Sunday, December 2, 2018

Birding the Southwest Metro Area

November 30, 2018

Richard Stevens:

High temperature today was 34 degrees.  Winds were 5-6 mph with gusts to 12 mph.  My birding centered around southwestern metro area today.

Fortune today with songbirds pitiful, I had better time finding waterfowl.  Of course, they do not move around as much.

My first stop was South Platte Park Reservoir (Arapahoe/Jefferson); target bird was the Purple Finch.  It was not found around the southwest corner of the reservoir nor in the surrounding neighborhoods during an hour search.

Next, I walked Waterton Canyon (Jefferson); target bird was the red Fox Sparrow that has been reported for a week or so.  It was not found during my 1.5 hour hike up and down the canyon.

Next stop was the Plum Creek wetlands at Titan Road.  Finally, a target bird was located.  I did photograph the Trumpeter Swan swimming south of Titan Road.

I returned to South Platte Park Reservoir and scoped the lake.  The Black Scoter was swimming and diving below the dam at the eastern edge of the reservoir.

A quick look at Eaglewatch Lake (southeast of the reservoir) found four Greater Scaups which had previous been reported.  Another pair swam on the South Platte River, just east of the Lake.

My next stop was the South Park neighborhood; target birds were the Pine Warbler and Palm Warbler previously reported.  Skies were darkening and temperatures dropped into the 20's.  Winds also picked up speed.  Neither target bird was found.

I had stopped at nearby South Platte Park as I passed it.  The previously reported Harris's Sparrow was in the bush at the southwest corner of the nature center.

After missing Palm Warbler at the "bowl" at South Park II,   I walked over to the north side of McLellan Reservoir still searching for the Yellow-rumped Warbler flock.  

Two Tundra Swans were on the northwest corner McLellan Reservoir (Arapahoe County).   

I do not remember if I mentioned any time before, scoping McLellan Reservoir from the paved path along the north side is closer and easier than finding a place to park and scope along West County Line Road (south side of Reservoir).

Do not know how today's photos will turn out, as shutter speed at South Platte Park was 1/60 second and 1/10 second at McLellan (quite slow for a hand held camera).  Will put on Colorado Birding Society's website tomorrow. 

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