Monday, November 15, 2010

Red Rocks Park Area

November 15, 2010

Richard Stevens:

After spending November 13 & 14th in bed (slept probably 18+ hours each day), my cold appeared to be better. I had to get out of the house. While I did not feel up to much hiking, I could sit at Red Rocks Park (Jefferson County) late in the afternoon.

I arrived at 4:00 pm, which may have been a little late considering the poor light (snowing a bit). The number of juncos at the feeders behind the Trading Post was half of my previous visits. In the past four or five visits, an adult and 2 or 3 juvenile White-crowned Sparrows preceded visits from the Golden-crowned Sparrow and White-throated Sparrow. No White-crowned Sparrows came tonight.

I had just about given up hope and was only staying until no birds visited the feeder. At 4:39 pm, the Curve-billed Thrasher jumped up on the northwestern platform feeder. The bird stayed until 4:44 pm and then jumped down and disappeared over the 4X4 (with red paint on it) and into the thick brush.

The two sparrows never came for a visit. By then I had decided to stay longer than any birds. Four Song Sparrows showed up around 5:00 pm. Two of which stayed until at least 5:40 pm when I left. There is a light on the northwest corner of the trading post. I wonder if the Song Sparrows (2 of the 4 kept coming to the platform feeder) take advantage of the light and eat late into the night. I was too cold to stay longer in hopes of deciding that.

Instead of going home, I parked at Red Rocks Park entrance # 2 and walked the highway south to Morrison and back. Northern Pygmy-Owls have nested in the riparian area along the creek in the past; none was found tonight.

Before going home, I drove over to White Ranch Open Space. Here, my Northern Pygmy-Owl recording did get a response!

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