Mike Habberfield — July 28, 11:02PM
yellow-billed magpie - range expansion?
On July 24, 2017 I was birding in Temescal Canyon Gateway Park just northwest of Santa Monica, CA. I observed two birds which I thought were most certainly yellow-billed magpies. Unmistakable magpie shape and plumage, the bright yellow bill jumped out at me, and I listened to and matched the call via a mobile device while in the field. I was shocked to later see that no yellow-billed magpies have ever been reported to eBird at this location, or anywhere closer than Santa Barbara. I am at a loss for any other possible bird with which I could be confusing yellow-billed magpie. Is it possible that this species has only recently expanded its range to the Santa Monica mountains?
The predicted climate-induced range shifts detailed by Audubon (http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/yellow-billed-magpie) indicate the possibility of summer range expansion toward Santa Monica by 2020. Also of note is that the current summer range depicted by this source is already southwest of Santa Barbara and very close to Temescal Canyon, yet no eBird sightings have been reported there.
Any insight or clarification would be much appreciated!