Saturday, April 23, 2016

Drive to South Platte Park Reservoir & Chatfield State Park

April 23, 2016

Richard Stevens:

Today was not quite as fantastic as yesterday, still not bad, as temperatures reached 77 degrees.  Winds were strong all day.  Anemometer readings at 3:00 pm were 28 mph with gusts to 36 mph.

I drove down to South Platte Park Reservoir (Arapahoe/Jefferson) to check on the report that the three Long-tailed Ducks were still there.  Thanks to Michael Kiessig for the heads up. 

The three ducks were at the extreme northern end of the lake (Arapahoe County).  Bring a scope if you want to see them; they were more than 400 meters away.  I had to watch them for quite a while to confirm the ID.  They rode the high waves up and down.  Several times, they stretched their wings and uplifted their heads.

Chatfield Reservoir (Jefferson/Douglas) just to the south was the next stop.  I walked the Kingfisher Bridge path on both sides of the South Platte River (farther upstream than downstream). 

The highlight was a Cooper's Hawk making a run at a Blue Jay.  He did not catch the jay, however did come close.

Only one Eastern Phoebe was found today; it was upstream of the bridge.  No "Empidonax Species", Wood-pewees or warblers have arrived yet (nor expected).

I also walked Plum Creek Delta area downstream of the footbridge where a pair of Eastern Phoebes attempted nesting the last two years.  None was found today.  A Peregrine Falcon was observed flying along the eastern side of the dam.

No shorebirds were found along the southern marina sand spit.  Two Bonaparte's Gulls were on the eastern side of the sand spit.  One Burrowing Owl was west of the southeastern entrance to Chatfield Reservoir.

A drive down Roxborough Road, south of Titan did not find the previously reported Burrowing Owls.

A stop at Cherry Creek Reservoir (Arapahoe) did not find the Marbled Godwits reported yesterday.  At least one Bonaparte's Gull flew around the middle of the lake.  No Common Loons were found today.

A Ferruginous Hawk was high up on one of the streetlights along Pena Blvd when I drove in to pick up birding companions near sunset.

No comments: