Saturday, October 29, 2011

Chaffee & Gunnison Counties

October 22, 2011

Richard Stevens:

Bryan Ehlmann and I birded around Chaffee County today. Weather was again quite cooperative. Winds were mild all day; high temperatures reached into the 60s.

We searched unsuccessfully for the Western Screech-Owls that nest in Buena Vista. We criss-crossed around Buena Vista three times during the day; without success. Western Screech-Owls were first found in the summer of 2007. While we relocated them in the summers of 2009 & 2010, our attempts in 2011 have all failed.

Pinyon Jays were found at the KOA Campgrounds below the Buena Vista Overlook. A second flock (14) was found along County Roads 301 & 300 on the way to Ruby Mountain. In the past, they have also been found at the Ruby Mountain parking area.

A small flock of 8 Bushtits were at the Buena Vista Overlook.

Lewis's Woodpeckers were found in Buena Vista (south of Brookdale Avenue and east of North Pleasant Avenue). In earlier weeks, nesting was again confirmed this summer.

We continued west over Cottonwood Pass to Taylor Park Reservoir (Gunnison County). A Black Scoter and male Barrow's Goldeneye were on the lake. The Barrow's Goldeneye could have been the one reported last month by Suzie Plooster?

After dark, we stopped at the many Campgrounds and picnic areas along Gunnison County Road 742. Northern Pygmy-Owls were found at two Campgrounds, Northern Saw-whet Owl at another.

We stopped to say "hi" to a friend. He had heard Flammulated Owls on his ranch up to 10/18. None responded to our recording tonight.

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