Jacumba Valley Ranch is the large (1250 acre) abandoned agricultural area just to the east of residential Jacumba. The lake and swamp have been less than productive for the last month or so, and I only visit two three times a week.
The Ranch, however, has become more interesting. I’ve been doing a loop along the west end extending up to the giant power lines that bisect it. The most productive area is the border between the old ag fields and the railroad tracks. On New Years Day I found Sage Thrasher, Mountain Bluebird, Vesper Sparrow, Bell’s Sparrow (thank you Paul L), Chipping Sparrow, Cactus Wren, Rock Wren, Horned Lark and Merlin in this area.
A lot of The Ranch if engulfed in tumbleweed, but there are significant areas of bare earth which I will try to survey in the next few weeks. I think that Mountain Plovers are possible. I dunno.
It snowed quite a built, for Jacumba, the morning of 12-31-14, and there still was a lot of snow left on the ground on 1-1-15. I’ve included a few pics of the snow.
Also of interest, the snow brought an invasion of the common Dark-eyed Juncos. Seems to be about ten times as many. Sapsuckers seem to have left town. Tricolored Blackbird numbers are low.