Lake Santa Margarita is 120 miles north of Santa Barbara. It is the main water supply for San Luis Obispo but is located in a valley east of the city over a small mountain range. My camera club members who are birders often mentioned the Western Grebes that nest around the lake. In the spring they can be seen paddling on the water with their chicks on the mother's back. Rainy weather kept us from getting to the lake to see this behavior. However, we thought the lake was worth seeing anyway. We experienced a remarkable day as the temperatures were in the 70's, the range land on the drive into the lake was a brilliant green and for some reason we had the lake to ourselves and just the birds. 
We saw plenty of grebes, but their young ones were on their own already. We did witness the grebes diving for small fish and then sharing their catch with other grebes -- no fighting, no competition -- just cooperation!!! 
And there were other birds as well.
Back to Top