Northern Harrier in the Meadow

Northern Harrier on a fencepost in the Berkeley Meadow

Wondering whether the recent rains had left ponds in the Berkeley Meadow (Sylvia McLaughlin Eastshore State Park), I walked through this habitat restoration area at midday.  All the rain had dried or soaked in, leaving no shallow bodies of water to draw the great show of birds we saw there last year.  The only birds I saw were this Northern Harrier, very likely the same individual I photographed in Cesar Chavez Park a few days ago, and a Black Phoebe, who would not sit still long enough for me to focus.  Even sitting on a fencepost, this bird is an impressive sight. So impressive that I failed to notice the Western Fence Lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis) in its talons.  Thanks to sharp-eyed Peter Rauch for pointing it out.

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