The Migration will begin soon.

The wind died right on schedule, it is the strangest recurring weather pattern. This Diablo wind starts the last week of April, blows all summer 10+ mph then on Labor Day it stops. Solidly stops each and every year I have lived on this Island I could set my clock to it. Here we are the wind has stopped, until next April.

After the wind is gone the temperature rises, today it’s just over 100º F.

I took the two black and white photos of the Seagulls last Spring before the wind started. The water was flat as glass with the only ripples and waves were caused by the diving of the waterbirds. They fly in a large circle diving in the same spot numerous times, I suspect there is a school of bait fish making their way down the slough. I see a school early in the morning just as the Sun begins to rise, the wake they cause is noticeable. Directly behind them is a much larger wake caused by the larger fish in pursuit of them.

Behind the large wake is the flock of waterbirds diving and plucking unlucky survivors off the top of the water. Seagulls are opportunist scavengers following schools of large fish, Sea lions and remnants left on the shoreline.

Ocean fishing boats always have a long trail of SeaGulls behind them catching the scraps tossed overboard as remains of cleaning fish. They show up as the San Francisco Giants baseball games are ending, usually around the 7th inning. These birds know a good thing.

They flock at dusk to fly back to their night perches on the shore of a pond. I remember when living in Fresno although it is a Desert Town each evening at dusk a flock of Seagulls would fly across Town. They flew from ponding basins on the outskirts of town to the San Joaquin River which forms the Northern border.

On a different note; the migrating birds will be making a comeback within the next 3-4 weeks, if they are on my schedule. I notice there is snow already in some parts of the North where the Canadians and Terns begin their journeys South. They will be followed by the various Goose species and Ducks; how many will land on our slough is anyones guess. I’m not sure if the smoke will keep them at bay, with luck the rains will begin. Although October would be early for the rain to begin it is not unheard of, it has rained from October to April in years past.

I am looking forward to the Autumn’s cool weather and the prospect of extinguishing the wildfires. It’s impossible to know what this weather pattern may bring, I realize most of science predicts the West will remain bone dry. I believe there is a chance the opposite will be true, maybe this climate change will alter the jet stream. Changing it’s flow to direct moisture towards the West Coast; it may be possible however don’t place too much trust in my uneducated opinion. I ‘ll stick with the Weather Guessers.

Jacques Lebec Natural Self Reliance

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