Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Banner Lakes Wildlife Area to Red Rocks Park

November 19, 2013

Richard Stevens:

Early this morning Bryan Ehlmann and I returned to Banner Lakes Wildlife Area (Weld County).  We knew the Wildlife Area was closed (open Saturday to Monday); however, we thought that scoping the Russian Olive Tree windbreak below the northern parking area from Highway 52, might find the Eastern Towhee (seen on Sunday & Monday).

While a Townsend's Solitaire and many Robins were seen, the Eastern Towhee was not (no Spotted Towhees either).

After dropping Bryan off at home, I continued west to Red Rocks Park (Jefferson).  The Golden-crowned Sparrow appeared within 10 minutes of my arrival.

Next, I stopped and looked for the slate colored Fox Sparrow reported along the entrance road.  Directions: the willows and bushes under the rocky cliffs just west of the last house on the north side of the entrance road (as one drives in from Jefferson County Road 93).

The area was quite birdy with many Mountain Chickadees, White-crowned Sparrows and Dark-eyed Juncos.  The Fox Sparrow was not there.

I noticed many birds coming to the feeders at the back of the house (above).  House Sparrows, House Finches, Mountain Chickadees, Black-capped Chickadees, White-breasted Nuthatches, Dark-eyed Juncos, Western Scrub-Jays and American Robins visited off and on.

A large sparrow that appeared to have a brown and reddish body and grayish head popped up just once.  By the time I set up my scope, I only got a two-second look before this sparrow dropped down onto the deck below the feeders.  It never reappeared.  The sparrow may have been the slate colored Fox Sparrow, however, I could not record that I observed it.

No Short-eared Owls appeared along the DIA Owl Loop (Adams) as I drove home.

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