Monday, December 25, 2017

A Christmas Snowy Owl

December 25, 2017

Richard Steves:

Rebecca and I arrived at Standley Lake (Jefferson County) this morning just in time to see the Snowy Owl fly over the dam.  It was not a satisfying look for our first Jefferson County Snowy Owl.

It was my third Snowy Owl of the 2017-18 season (Morgan, Logan and now Jefferson Counties).  In the 2011-12 season I had observed 10 Snowy Owls (Arapahoe, Adams, Logan, Sedgwick, Weld , Yuma Counties)!

We did not relocate the bird from the north side of the lake.  The owl was later relocated in the open space north of 100th avenue & Simms.  When we were there is was too cold to walk the area.

Temperature only reached 21 degrees today.  It would have felt colder but for a wind of 2 mph only gusting to 6 mph.

After dropping Rebecca off, I drove off chasing a Pine Warbler report in Arapahoe County.  I brief search found the area to be private yards.  I was uncomfortable looking around on Christmas day and left.

Then I went to the South Platte Birding Area at 88th avenue (Adams).  A half mile hike south added two Barrow's Goldeneyes to my day list.  Many gulls on nearby East Gravel Lakes and Tani Reservoir were almost all Ring-billed Gulls.  One California Gull was on Tani.

I still had a couple of hours of daylight and decided to return to the Jefferson County Open Space.  A two mile walk north and west of 100th and Simms did not find the Snowy Owl.

Returning home by way of 100th avenue west to North Alkire Street south to 88th avenue, then east, I scoped the south side of Standley Lake.  The Snowy Owl was there!

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