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A Noisy California Gull Colony

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

09:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Trailhead at the intersection of San Antonio Road and Terminal Boulevard

37.433605, -122.099551

Our Spring Birdathon is underway and we’re raising funds for our education programs! When you sign up for a field trip, please consider making a donation to support our mission. Every dollar that you donate makes a difference.

NEW TRIP POLICY: Please limit your sign-ups to 1 weekend trip and 2 weekday trips per month.

Before signing up for this trip, please take a moment to read our trip policies and view our liability waiver.

A Noisy California Gull Colony (Palo Alto)

Breeding California Gulls in the South Bay have been monitored since 1980 when there were only 24 gulls. A count in 2023 showed 8,879 nests at the Palo Alto Flood Control Basin out of about 23,500 nests in the South Bay. We will walk the Adobe Creek Loop Trail to an area across from the basin islands used for nesting by California Gulls. There we will look for fuzzy gray chicks and some early fledglings for about 30 minutes. On the way back we will meander and look for shorebirds on Charleston Slough on the left and ducks and pelicans in Adobe Creek on the right. At the pump house we'll look for Barn and Cliff Swallows. For a preview check out https://scvas.org/self-guided-birding/california-gull-colony.

Trip Difficulty: About a 3 mile round trip. Paved from the trailhead to the intersection of Bay Trail and Adobe Creek Loop Trail. The Adobe Creek Loop Trail is wide, packed dirt with some gravel (wheelchair accessible). The colony can be viewed from the trail; secondary paths nearest the colony (at the water’s edge) are not recommended for wheelchairs. There is no elevation change. No shade; several benches along the way.

Other Trip Notes: Bring your binoculars, and if you have them, cameras with telephoto lenses, and spotting scopes.

Leaders: Mary Ann Robertson (650) 521-3910 (voice only in the field), Diane McCoy (650) 714-3769, Julie Amato, and Vicki Silvas-Young

Beginner Friendly

Meet: Meet at the trailhead at the intersection of San Antonio Road and Terminal Boulevard

Directions: From US-101 in Mountain View, exit San Antonio Rd. Continue north to the end of San Antonio Rd then turn right onto Terminal Blvd. Park along Terminal Blvd. Latitude/Longitude: 37.433605, -122.099551

Facilities: Wheelchair accessible restroom; drinking water at trailhead. Cell phone service is good.

Parking Type and Fees: Parking (free) along Terminal Boulevard. There are two ADA parking spots and a curb cut and path leading to the trailhead, at the San Antonio Gate.

Banner Photo: California Gull by Mary Ann Robertson

Questions? Email general questions to fieldtrips@scvas.org or contact the trip leader for questions regarding the event.

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