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Birds and Birding

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This region is a hotspot for birds and birding. There are many habitats close to each other such as salt marsh, freshwater ponds, sand dunes, ocean, harbor, woodlands, residential, and agricultural land. The proximity of these habitats make for a wide diversity in birding. Elkhorn Slough and the Moss Landing region are well know by bird counters for the high numbers and record number of species. Annual counts regularly list more than 200 species for one day.

Birds and Blooms magazine has endorsed the Captain's Inn at Moss Landing as one of the nations birdiest bed and breakfasts, 2009.

The Captain's Inn has a birding checklist with birds observed from and at the Inn. This "from our backyard" list started with 141 species logged by Captain Yohn and his wife Melanie. Our guests have been steadily adding new species to the list during our first year of operation (03-04). The more recent sightings include: * John & Peggy Poole: Mew Gull * Melanie Gideon: Yellow Throated Loon * John & Peggy Poole: Downy Woodpecker * Richard Jeffers: Townsend's Warbler * Rod Norden: Surf Scoters * Rod Norden: Shearwater sp. * Rebecca Cheek: Lincoln's Sparrow * Sarah Chester: Phalarope sp.

Calif pelican

A number of guest birders have challenged each other and set "in room" and "at the Inn" birding records. While we can not promise these numbers as nature widely varies with time of year, weather, and other parameters; this can give you an idea of the potenial. Some of the records to beat are as follows:

* Guest at the Captain's Inn on a two night stay, birds listed from the Moss Landing and Elkhorn Slough area: 78 species (Y.G.)

* Guest at the Captain's Inn on a two night stay, from the Inn without leaving the Inn's property (but using all the high points): 61species (K.H.)

* Guest in room "Sanctuary" for one night stay, counted prior to check out, without leaving the room: 29 species (J.S.)

* Guest in Pelican Beach, starting at dawn, using spotting scope, without leaving the room, counted prior to having breakfast (9:30am): 37 species (R.J.), 34 species (J.P.)

* Guest in High Seas, starting at dawn, telescope used, without leaving the bed in the room, counted prior to having breakfast: 36 species (R.N.)

Our past birding guests challenge you to break their records!

Blk Skimmer

Birders from out of state will find California Quail, Western Grebe, Clarks Grebe, and other local species within the immediate area. Bill Oddie from BBC has birded from the Inn. We can provide the use of identification and guide books, the Captain's Inn bird checklist, and have binoculars for rent.

Birders' Challenge Weekends: If you rent out three or more rooms for two nights each, the Captain's Inn will set up a "friendly competition" for you and your birding friends. We will provide a prize for the winner, early coffee, help verifing rare sightings, and a discount on the second night stay. We can also help provide activities for spouses who are less interested in birding. Ask us for details and conditions.

Am Avocets Moss Landing offers so much for the birder from pontoon boat tours on Elkhorn Slough, pelagic tours, hikes with local experts, hiking trails, and driving routes to hotspots. The inn offers packages for Elkhorn Slough Safari and can help plan your birding adventure. The Captain's Inn is an official sponsor of the Bird-a-thon: Santa Clara Audubon Chapter.

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Call for Reservations 831-633-5550

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