Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Another Trip to Barr Lake

May 26, 2009

Richard Stevens:

While waiting for friends' flight to land at DIA Airport, I made a quick trip (4 hours) to Barr Lake (Arapahoe County). It was raining all around the state park, however party sunny at the park. Winds did pick up to 25+ mph around 9:00 am.

During my stay, I hiked from mile marker 0.0 (Visitor's Center footbridge to 0.6, then back to 0.0 to 7.0 (south end of dam) and back to the Visitor's Center.

Highlights included a Hooded Warbler mm 0.1 (just west of the Niedrach red footbridge). This bird slowly worked its way north of the red footbridge before disappearing in thicker cover.

A Northern Waterthrush was hidden deep in the taller grasses at the northeast end of the loop defined by the Niedrach Boardwalk (mm 0.5). Quite a few Bullock's Orioles and Western Kingbirds were setting up territories here.

At mm 0.6 just west of the Boardwalk Loop, I found a brightly yellow and orange colored warbler. Unfortunately it flew deep into the willows and did not come out in the 20 minutes I waited. It was either a Townsend's Warbler or Blackburnian Warbler; I will never know.

Several Western Wood-pewees were found between mm 0.0 and the Pioneer Trail at mm 8.1. Another Northern Waterthrush was below the main road at mm 7.9. This most likely is the same bird that has been around the Pioneer Trail the past week.

Only two thrushes were found today. A Swainson's Thrush was near the banding station at mm 8.7. A Hermit Thrush was at mm 7.8.

I hiked all the way to the south end of the dam at mm 7.0. I did not relocate the Magnolia Warbler found yesterday.

After picking up Bryan and Sue Ehlmann at the airport, we drove over to Cherry Creek Reservoir (Arapahoe). The Least Tern was not found. The mudflats at the new wetlands were covered by last night's and this morning's rain. We did not see any terns flying over the lake.

Nine Burrowing Owls were found at various locations along the DIA Owl Loop (see CoBus website for additional details).

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