Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
||Thread Tools||Rate Thread|
|Monday 24th March 2003, 10:21||#1|
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: NE Indiana, USA
Fort Wayne, 3-23-03, afternoon: BONANZA!
Apologizing for a late post here. I tried several times to post last night, but while I could access the forum, no threads would come up! Oh, well....
After watching my beloved Hoosiers lose their basketball game by 22 points (yikes!), I headed out for my first Stockbridge Audubon trip of the season, to Hurshtown Reservoir, about 15 miles NE of town. This is a city drinking water storage facility, completely man-made, which stands high above the surrounding flat farmlands.
What a disappointment to find it still mostly covered by ice (my last trip here last November, lasted about 5 minutes -- we had no sooner arrived than a squall line blew through, with heavy rain and high winds that produced tornadoes in the area). But there was a patch of open water at the far western end, which gave us some small number of ducks, grebes, gulls and loons.
After checking all this out, we drove to Cedarville Reservoir, which is a very wide dammed section of the St. Joseph River, about 6 miles away. It was completed free of ice and totally loaded with ducks, which we could see from a small church parking lot.
Here's my complete list for the approximately two hours spent at these two locations:
Seeing the loons was especially wonderful! There were 3, all in full, fresh breeding plumage. And they were calling, which I had never heard before!!! They swam to within 50 feet of the shoreline at Hurshtown, and we had wonderful naked eye, bino and scoped views of them, with their velvety black heads, dark red eyes, and those checkerboard backs. One even lifted off and gave us wonderful flight views, circling overhead before settling back down.
The Horned Grebes were in all stages of plumage, and those in full breeding feather were just gorgeous!
We were a little surprised not to see any Blue-Winged Teal, but I had seen them earlier in the day at a location about 15 miles to the SW.
The only thing that would have made it more complete for me would have been some Northern Pintails -- I do love seeing those elegant birds!
No new lifers from the day, but nearly everything was a year's first sighting for me. And several (Gadwall, Redhead, Canvasback, Horned Grebe, Ruddy Duck, Common Goldeneye) were the first sightings in several years!
Afterward, several of us adjourned for Mexican food and margaritas, nicely rounding out a terrific birding day.
Now, it's Monday, and I must head for work, darn it. We have sunny skies and 70 degrees predicted -- and there's an extremely rare Gyrfalcon reported about 100 miles west of me. Only the second photographed sighting record for Indiana -- and I can't go chasing it! But digis of it have been posted on the Surfbirds.com rarities page. Look for the name Jeff McCoy.
Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.
Click here to Support BirdForum
|Monday 24th March 2003, 10:41||#2|
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Doncaster, UK
Nice list Beverlybaynes (as you know, I like lists!!!)
That's a good return for a couple of hours birding, and definitely deserves to be called a bonanza!
I am impressed by the show the loons gave you.
I've only ever heard them recorded, to hear them in the feather must have been great.
Thanks for the info, and please keep it up, I really enjoy my vicarious American birding!
|Monday 24th March 2003, 16:08||#3|
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Devon. UK.
Obviously a great day except for the Hoosiers defeat.
Are you listening to the voice that talks in your head while you read this?
|Monday 24th March 2003, 16:35||#4|
Join Date: Jan 2003
I hear loons all summer long here, right through to lake freeze up. I'm hoping to finally get some pictures this summer. The lake we fish the most is only a 1/4 mile from here and is normally just full of loons. We can watch their babies grow all summer before they have to leave. They regularly fly over my house going to a pond across town (my house is right in the middle of their flying path). They are certainly majestic birds!
|Rate This Thread|