Monday, January 4, 2016

Birding Day 4 of 2016

January 4, 2016

Shortly after midnight, I drove to Rampart Range Road and Highway 67 (Douglas County).  It was cold; fortunately, winds were calm, unusual for the mountains.  Eventually I would find both a Northern Pygmy-Owl & Northern Saw-whet Owl along Hwy 67!  Feeling good and not tired I decided to head up to Larimer County:

Day four of the New Year was a good one as I found all my target birds and more!  Temperatures barely reached into the high 30s; winds fortunately were calm most of the day.

It was a "cool" 19 degrees at 8:00 am when I stood at the "Yellow-throated Warbler" house.  The homeowner said that the bird had visited yesterday at 7:00 am, but was not yet seen today, looking good for me?

Dale and Joel Adams from Florence showed up around 9:00 am. The bird finally made an appearance at 10:39 am, for 15 seconds.  Fortunately, it came back after ten minutes.

Others said that 10:00 am was a good time to see it now.  Others thought Noon; in any case, it obviously varies.  Got to see and photograph the bird!

Next, I joined Georgia Doyle and her friend at the Larimer County Landfill. One has to check in at the office to obtain access.  This can take awhile, as birders are not priority; however, it is nice that birders are allowed to look at the hundreds of gulls at the dumpsite.

Eventually we observed an adult Lesser Black-backed Gull, juvenile Glaucous Gull and a first winter California Gull among hundreds of Ring-billed Gulls.  The 4th cycle Glaucous-winged x Herring Gull stood out in the crowd of Ring-billeds.  A possible young Thayer's Gull was also in the mix.

Thanks to Georgia Doyle for some excellent directions for the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and Swamp Sparrow.  I stopped at Hilltop Drive but missed the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker then continued to Bobcat Ridge Natural Area.

The American Woodcock was easy to find at Bobcat Ridge Natural Area because several birders had scopes on it!  A second American Woodcock had been found by Cole Wild; regrettable several of us searched for it unsuccessfully.

I then returned to the "favorite tree" of the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.  This time the bird was indeed there!

With an hour of sunlight left, I went to River's Edge Natural Area.  The Swamp Sparrow was cooperative and exactly where Georgia had explained!

I walked the Big Thompson River at Taft Avenue.  The previously reported Eastern Screech-Owl was not found and the only target bird I missed today.

On the way home, I stopped at Barr Lake (Adams County).  Calm winds made a walk below the dam quite pleasant.  No Long-eared Owls were heard tonight.

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