Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Jackson Reservoir and Barr Lake

December 1, 2015

Richard Stevens:

Peter Wynn and I enjoyed a morning walk around Jackson Reservoir (Morgan County).  Winds were 6 mph; temperatures were in the high 30s.

We managed to relocate the resident Eastern Screech-Owl & two Long-eared Owls along the western side!  While scoping the lake we found a 4th cycle Lesser Black-backed Gull & several Bonaparte's Gulls.

Passerines in the Campgrounds were scarce.  No Varied Thrushes were found among the many American Robins.  Four Yellow-rumped Warblers represented the warblers. 

No uncommon sparrows could be found among the small flocks of White-crowned and American Tree Sparrows.  A few Song Sparrows were reacted to our pishing.  A Common Yellowthroat popped out of some cattails near the shore.

After dropping Peter off, I ended my birding day below the dam at Barr Lake (Adams).  The walk was quite rewarding.

My target birds were Winter Wren, Rusty Blackbird & Long-eared Owl.  No Winter Wren was found.  While pishing, I heard the rattle of a wren.  Unfortunately, when it came out of the cattails, it was a Marsh Wren.  A second bird also rattled about 10 yards away.

I found a female Rusty Blackbird searching for food on the muddy bank with a couple of Song Sparrows.  They were along the "canal" that runs east from the footbridge below the dam (approximately mile 6.6 for those familiar with the mile markers).

Then two additional female Rusty Blackbirds were found in the cottonwoods south of the footbridge.

Near sunset, I looked carefully at the thicker bushes.  A Long-eared Owl was well hidden at the eastern end of my walk.

On the way back to my car (parked at the old stone house parking area), three Great Horned Owls were heard calling.

Then at the northern end of the hike, a second Long-eared Owl responded to my recordings!  Unfortunately, the owl was on the opposite side of the canal.  I did not approach to get a look at the bird.

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