Thursday, April 20, 2017

Owling Trip to Teller & Fremont Counties

April 14-17, 2017

Terry Michaels and I went on a rare weekend birding trip (usually too many people wandering around).  We went owling in Fremont and Teller Counties.

I have written before about the about of equipment I carry.  Back in 1992, the equipment consisted of only a pair of $50 binoculars.  In later years, I found myself carrying GPS (locator), IPOD (play recordings), blue tooth speaker (amplify recordings), anemometer (wind speed & temperature), digital recorder (record sightings), digital camera (photograph sightings) and too expensive binoculars. 

Recently "owl listening stations" and spot light were taken on grouse and owling trips.

This trip we also added NVG7-3P     Night Vision goggles and radio transmitter/receiver (to locate tagged birds).

Because of the sensitivity of owl's habitat and nesting their locations will remain unnamed.  We have gained much expertise in locating owls and enjoyed these last few days.

Big misses were Flammulated Owls.  Perhaps they are not back in Colorado yet?  Usually they return to the mountains before snow covered roads allow access.  We drove several areas and even snow shoed where access was possible.


April 14:
No Flammulated Owls found in Teller County.   Two Northern Pygmy-Owls and a Northern Saw-whet Owl (caught on our "owl listening stations") north of Woodland Park.

April 15 & 16
The Western Screech-Owl was relocated along the Arkansas Riverwalk (Fremont County).  A Black Phoebe & Eastern Phoebe were at Florence River Park (Fremont).

After dark, our "receiver" picked up a possible Spotted Owl.  Two Northern Saw-whet Owls were found at the mouth of Phantom Canyon.

April 16
We also found two Northern Saw-whet Owls and a Northern Pygmy-Owl up Red Canyon Road (Fremont).  Our return to Phantom Canyon found the Spotted Owl.  Two Northern Saw-whet Owls at different locations than yesterday also were picked up by our "owl listening stations".

April 17
A hike around Mueller State Park (Teller) added two Williamson's Sapsuckers and an American Three-toed Woodpecker to our trip list.

After dark, a trek up the Crags Road to the Campgrounds found two Northern Pygmy-Owls and a great surprise.  A Boreal Owl was calling unprovoked north of the Campgrounds.

A brief stop at Beaver Creek Wildlife Area (Fremont) on the way home added one last Northern Pygmy-Owl to our trip list.

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