Letters to the Editor

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Alameda usually has a small number of migrating American robins (Turdus migratorius) during winter and early spring, but this is the second year we’ve had a record number of the red-chested curious birds. 

Large groups of them numbering maybe 40 or more were first sighted last year. In the last few days, we’ve seen as many as 89, flying among the trees and going after earthworms on Bay Farm Island.

Rain in the past two weeks must have contributed to the number of worms and beetles coming out of the wet soil and grassy areas.

In the past three decades, Bay Farm’s birders have noted mainly just couples here and there. Coming for mating season, they make nests and hatch their eggs. But for bird and animal lovers, the current record large numbers of robins are a great sign of bird population growth. 

I personally photographed seven individual robins in my backyard trying to visit our ground-based bird bath. While one splashed and bathed, the others were in the “on-deck circle” awaiting their turns. 

The large groups of robins are supposedly making a migratory pitstop, resting here for a few days before moving on and will be visible through March. Get out there with binoculars or cameras or just with your eyes to enjoy them before they depart.

Males are courting females and make many varied chirps. Once mated, males can be heard making very unique distinctive calls for their mates and brood late in the day. They’re real characters and females can often be seen and heard clucking at their mates in disapproval if not enough grubs or worms have been brought back to the nest.

Maybe we’re not so different after all.


Mike Lano

The Alameda Education Foundation (AEF) would like to thank JP and Christine Parker of SPIN! Neapolitan Pizza at Alameda Landing for benefiting AEF with their “Dine & Donate” night on Jan. 4. 

SPIN! generously donated a portion of the proceeds from this evening to AEF, which will use these funds to support programs that benefit Alameda students. AEF will use the money for enrichment programs, middle-school sports and a brand-new college test prep program based out of Encinal High School.  

SPIN’s Dine & Donate nights are a delicious way to raise funds for vital AEF programs. We invite your readers to join us at future events on Mondays: Feb. 8, March 7, April 4, May 2 and June 6 between 5:30 and 8 p.m.  


Vicki Sedlack


I understand that the city would pay prospective City Manager Jill Keimbach $245,000 per year plus benefits. 

That seems like a lot of money, particularly when the average Alamedan per capita income is about $42,000 per year with no benefits. Doesn’t the City Council realize we are not San Francisco or Oakland, we’re little Mayberry.

It is our taxes that pay for all those inflated salaries and retirements the City Council so generously makes available. Surely there’s a qualified person out there that would love to live in a quiet community on the bay that could squeeze by on less than $250,000-plus a year. I, for one, would not mind seeing Keimach seek employment elsewhere. Why break the backs of us, the taxpayers?


Dave Case