Sunday, January 7, 2018

Republican Wildlife Area

January 3, 2018

Richard Stevens:

Terry Michaels and I conducted a mini-Christmas Count around the Bonny Reservoir Wildlife Area  (Yuma County) today.  We really could not call it a full fledge Christmas Count when there are only two participants.  Temperatures reached 49 degrees in the afternoon.  Winds were 10 mph with gusts to 18 mph in the afternoon.

An hour before sunrise we walked Yuma County Road and the Republican River and heard five Eastern Screech-Owls.  Terry pointed out a Greater Prairie-Chicken dawdling along while scoping the hills behind the ranger's place.

At the old Fosters Grove Campgrounds, we found a male Northern Cardinal, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Long-eared Owl and eight Wild Turkeys

Along the South Road (gated off Yuma CR 2), we encountered another Red-bellied Woodpecker and a warbler.  Brief looks at the warbler were not long enough to identify the bird.  It may have been a Pine Warbler, Blackpoll Warbler or Nashville Warbler.  All we could confirm was a gray faced warbler with broken eye ring.  Neither of us observed much yellow and thought the undertail coverts to be whitish.  After 30 minutes or so, we determined that the bird had escaped further looks.  Our second Long-eared Owl of the day was in the thick grove of trees at the eastern end.

The old Wagon Wheel Campgrounds surprised us with a Red-naped Sapsucker.  We hoped it was a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, but was not.

A Common Redpoll and four Eastern Bluebirds were seen in the Hale area (CR 4/CR LL.5 and below the dam).  Seven additional Eastern Bluebirds were ran across along CR 4 toward Hale Ponds.  A Harris's Sparrow popped out of a brush pile.

We added two additional Red-bellied Woodpeckers at Hale Ponds to our day list.  Shortly after sunset, two additional Eastern Screech-Owls were heard.

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