Sunday, November 7, 2010

FAB-u-lous Morning

This morning I was ambivalent about where to bird, but finally decided to go for waterfowl at Lake Wichita. I ended up having a pretty good birding morning all the way around. Of course, I forgot my camera at home, so a word picture will have to do. The weather was cool, but sunny and there wasn't any wind, so very comfortable.

I started at Lake Wichita Park, along the chat trail, back to the barrow pit, then across the bridge and up behind the wooded area that runs parallel to the chat trail. It seemed at first it would be a very quiet morning, but it didn't stay that way. The winter birds are definitely back. Today I saw my first of season white-crowned sparrow, savannah sparrow, yellow-rumped warbler, northern harrier, greater yellowlegs and spotted towhee.

Near the bridge I heard an odd sound near the beaver dam, so went down into the brush to see if I could find what was making the noise. I didn't find out, but did have an interesting observation. I ended up in the middle of a flock of nearly a dozen cardinals and heard them making a kind of chuffing noise I have never noted before. I haven't found a recording like it yet.

Birds seen included: ring-billed gull, Eastern phoebe, white-crowned sparrow, Bewick's wren, blue jay, cardinal, American coot, ruddy duck, green-winged teal, bufflehead, American wigeon, canvasback, song sparrow, red-winged blackbird, house finch, yellow-rumped warbler, savannah sparrow, common grackle, mockingbird, rock pigeon, robin, spotted towhee, great blue heron, red-tailed hawk, Eurasian collared dove, European starling, and great-tailed grackle. I also had a chance to watch a white-tailed deer for some time.

I then drove by Rosemont Cemetery on the way to the spillway. I occasionally see turkeys there and this morning was one of my lucky days. I saw two turkeys walking among the headstones in an otherwise quiet cemetery.

Then headed over to the Lake Wichita spillway and walked up for a view over the lake and then down along the dirt road on the opposite side of the dam, between the drainage ditch and the mesquite fields. There I saw European starlings, eastern phobe, meadowlarks (unidentified species), great blue heron, blue jay, killdeer, white pelican, ring-billed gull, double-crested cormorant, greater yellowlegs, mallard, semi-palmated sandpiper, northern harrier, lark sparrow, savannah sparrow, mourning dove, rock pigeon, dark-eyed junco, white-winged dove, and cattle egret.

So overall a good morning.

Good birding!

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