Recently, large masses of krill have appeared offshore, attracting thousands of northbound red-necked phalaropes. Small numbers of these phalaropes have come ashore, turning up in freshwater ponds and pools along the coast, including a small flock at the mouth of San Pedro Creek.
The female (above), as is typical of phalaropes, was VERY tame, allowing me to approach within a few feet as she foraged. A characteristic behavior of the species is to spin around in the water, creating a whirlpool that pulls up small invertebrates from below.
Like all three species of phalaropes, red-necked phalaropes exhibit reverse sexual dimorphism. In most bird species, the male is more brightly colored, but in phalaropes, the female is more brightly colored.