Town Crier: Birder puts out call for Montclair wildlife website

pie-prior-1216-01MONTCLARION: December 23, 2016

The 12 days of Christmas have nothing on Kay Loughman.The North Hills birder posts monthly listings of plants and animals — including calling birds — on her website at

It takes a village to track all the flora and fauna. Loughman has a stable of helpers — including her husband, Bill. In November, they documented 50 bird species in and around Claremont Canyon — everything from Yellow-rumped Warblers to Ruby-crowned Kinglets. Add to that eight species of butterflies and two species of mammals and you’ve got a regular wild kingdom.

Not to mention mushrooms and lichen and buckeye (Oh my!)
Would someone like to start a wildlife website for Montclair?

Loughman says she’ll help mentor and is excited about the prospects. “The wildlife should be almost identical — but wouldn’t it be fun to discover some differences!” And don’t forget, Montclair Park has a pond, which means you’ll see ducks and other water fowl.

Finally, speaking of birds, Oakland’s Audubon Christmas Bird Count is Dec. 18. If you’d like to join the team of bird counters in Montclair, even for part of the day, email Robert Lewis at

Around town: There’s a new holiday pop-up shop in Montclair. Local metalsmith Deborah Hutcheson saw the old Raimondi’s Paint shop, 2024 Mountain Blvd., sitting empty and she called the realtor to work out a deal. Hutch Handcrafted Jewelry is open until at least Dec. 23 (she has the lease through Dec. 28) and Deborah hopes her precious metal and gemstone jewelry and bronze tabletop sculptures sell out. See it at:

Holiday highlights: That chorus of jingle bells echoing through Union Square isn’t SantaCon — it’s passengers on the Holiday Nights and Sights tour through the San Francisco’s best lit districts. Sunday through Thursday until Dec. 23, catch a Hornblower Classic Cable Car and let a jolly driver take the wheel while you soak up the seasonal offerings. Check it out:

And on a musical note: First Presbyterian Church of Oakland, 2619 Broadway, features renowned organist and artist-in-residence, Jonathan Dimmock, performing “Messiaen’s: La Nativite du Seigneur” at 9 p.m. Dec. 23.Got news? You can reach Ginny Prior by email at or on the web at http://www.


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