Monday, November 19, 2007

Wall of Death on Hearthside Property at Bolsa Chica

This 4,400 foot long glass wall is a killer of birds at Bolsa Chica. Sunday my friend Carrie and I discovered 4 dead birds in one hour while walking along the wall. We also found two stunned birds sitting in the dirt immediately below the wall.

Here are the four birds found on Sunday the 18th of November. They are a male Anna's humming bird, a yellow rumped warbler, a mourning dove, and a female northern harrier.

This is a different view of the dead northern harrier. Such a senseless, unnecessary loss of a beautiful bird.

You can see from this image how close the wall is to habitat which is attractive to birds.

This morning we found this dead meadow lark next to the wall. When Flossie Horgan the Executive Director of the Bolsa Chica Land Trust talked to Ed Mountford, a representative of Hearthside Homes and told him what was happening he dismissed her concerns with the comment "Oh they are only sparrows", and went on to say they plan to put something up on the wall that will make it more obvious to the birds, but he didn't know when this would happen. I have four birds in my freezer that prove him wrong. The dead birds are not sparrows, and even if they were sparrows, there are native sparrows that are important members of the natural community at Bolsa Chica. Members of the Bolsa Chica Land Trust, Sea and Sage Audubon and other organizations have contacted the enforcement officer for the California Coastal Commission, representatives of the California Department of Fish and Game, our and the press. What can be done to prevent more deaths remains to be seen. One thing that really ticks me off is on one hand the developer is using the Bolsa Chica as a selling point to attract buyers, and on the other hand killing the very birds that live there.

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