Sunday, October 9, 2016

Chatfield Reservoir to Barr Lake

October 9, 2016

Richard Stevens:

Rebecca Kosten and I celebrated the fantastic fall day filled with birding.  Temperatures reached the middle 70s; winds were calm in the afternoon.

Our first stop was South Platte Park Reservoir (Jefferson/Arapahoe Counties) where the Surf Scoter was quickly found swimming off the south side.

We went over to Chatfield Reservoir (Jefferson/Douglas) to look for shorebirds.  No uncommon shorebirds were found off the southeast marina sand spit or the Platte River delta.  One Sabine's Gull was observed flying north of the heron rookery.

On the drive home, we stopped at Rocky Mountain Arsenal (Adams).  Nothing uncommon was found.  The previously reported Common Loon was not seen.  The American White Pelican count has risen to 96 birds on Lake Ladora.  Few passerines flew around the Bison enclosure.

To be different at Barr Lake (from our trips to the Visitor's Center side) we walked to the western end off Buckley Road.  Water levels were low, no shore or shorebirds.

Great-tailed Grackles and one Yellow-headed Blackbird were in the cattail marsh off 144th avenue (north side of the town of Barr).

We hiked several hundred yards west of the northern end of the dam.  One Pectoral Sandpiper was among 62 Killdeer.  Four Baird's Sandpipers, a dozen Franklin's Gulls and many Ring-billed Gulls were also counted there.

From the Visitor's Center side of Barr Lake we hiked several hundred yards south of the Niedrach trail.  Another four Pectoral Sandpipers were scattered among 51 Killdeer.

A walk to the banding station found few passerines.  One Barn Owl was north of the banding station.

We drove the DIA Owl Loop about an hour before sunset.  No Short-eared Owls appeared tonight.  One Burrowing Owl continues at Third Creek and West Cargo Road (the old prairie dog town 3.4 miles east of 96th avenue and Tower Road).

I had just washed the car, so we did not drive down the gravel Gun Club Road to check on the Burrowing Owls down there.  Yesterday, two Burrowing Owls were still there.

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