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Red Phalarope at Benicia, California

Emerson A. Stoner
4 (July-August)
From Field and Study
Online Text:

Red Phalarope at Benicia, California

On November 2, 1937, Burton Kuntz, a student of the Benicia High School, found a Red Phalarope (Phalaropus fulicarius) on a street near the shore of Carquinez Straits, in Benicia, Solano County, California. The bird was in a dazed condition and died shortly after it was found. It was brought to me and I have preserved it as a skin. It proved to be a female. The stomach was empty with the exception of a single, small lead shot; there being no indication of bodily injury, this may have caused lead poisoning. Verification of the identification of this skin as that of a Red Phalarope was made by Mr. J. Grinnell at the University of California.

Four days later, November 6, I observed several phalaropes which appeared to be of this species in the waters of Carquinez Straits near the Martinez wharf. The Red Phalarope being a pelagic species, it is possible that the severe storms at the end of October blew a flock of these birds inland. Benicia is a little over forty miles directly east from the seacoast, or, in a northeasterly direction, twenty-five miles from the Golden Gate.

Emerson A. Stoner

Benicia, California, February 9, 1938.

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