Members of the public are invited to join docents from Yolo Basin Foundation on Saturday for a free, guided tour of the city of Davis wetlands. Wintering waterfowl are abundant and late-fall migrants continue to arrive with the recent storms.
One of the last ducks to leave its northern breeding grounds in late fall is the common goldeneye. White underneath, the male has a black head, back and tail, with round white patches on its cheeks. White stripes are visible on black wings while he’s swimming. White wing patches are conspicuous in flight.
The female has a chocolate brown head with a slate gray back, wings and tail. This medium-sized diving duck is named for its golden yellow eye color. Rapid wing beats produce a whistling sound in flight, giving it the nickname “the whistler.”
All those wishing to join the tour should meet a few minutes before 3 p.m. at the gate in front of the city’s wastewater treatment plant, east of the Yolo County Landfill on County Road 28H. Participants should take their own binoculars, water (there is no potable water on site) and field guide. Docents will have spotting scopes to enhance wildlife viewing.
Most of the tour is by car on firm gravel roads, with a couple of optional short walks in the wetlands. A portable toilet is available on the route. Tours run rain or shine.
To reach the wastewater treatment station, head north from Davis on Pole Line Road, turn right on Road 28H and go 3 miles east, just past County Road 105. The group meets at the gate east of the intersection.
This is a free tour; no reservations are required. For more information, call Heidi Satter at 530-757-4828 before the day of the tour, or visit www.yolobasin.org.