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20118Swift Current area

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  • M A
    Feb 11, 2011
      What a week in the way of 'weather'... from a deep freeze to a melt
      within a couple days. Ugh!! (Sure makes for icy, dicey roads!!)

      Monday (Feb 7), I saw 2 different Snowy Owls... one very barred Snowy
      Owl within less than 1 mile east of the compressor station, sitting on a
      powerpole on the north of Fosterton grid road, and one very barred Snowy
      Owl on a powerpole along Hwy 32, just north of Cantuar.

      Yesterday (Feb 10), I saw a Merlin fly from the trees at a farm at the
      intersection of Hwy 32/Hwy 332. It flew alongside the highway as we
      drove slowly by (driving slow because of the ice-covered highway!!)

      Other than the owls and falcon, all I have been seeing out there all
      week were several coveys of Gray Partridge (5-25 per covey), a couple
      flocks of 5 or 6 Sharp-tailed Grouse, a few Black-billed Magpies, a few
      Horned Larks, a couple large flocks of 300+ Snow Buntings, and a couple
      herds of 100+ Pronghorn. I have been feeling sorry for the Pronghorn...
      you can see them trying to paw through the ice-encrusted snow.

      Out at work this week, all I have been seeing are a flock of 9 Gray
      Partridges, 1 Sharp-tailed Grouse (sitting in the trees), 3 Black-billed
      Magpies, & at least 75 House Sparrows. Even the non-birders are
      commenting on the low numbers of birds and wildlife they're seeing (or
      not seeing) out and about this winter.

      This week on the home front, we are continuing to see 1 male Downy
      Woodpecker, 1 male Northern Flicker, 4 Red-breasted Nuthatches, 25-75
      Bohemian Waxwings, several House Finches, 2 Common Redpolls, 25+ House
      Sparrows, & 1 Nuttall's Cottontail. The birds are very nervous, so I
      think the Sharp-shinned Hawk is likely still around.

      The Bohs have pretty much cleaned up the berries on our Mountain Ash
      tree so they land, then leave as they look for new food sources. There
      are (dried up) plums on a tree next door so they do stop there every so
      often, and also seem to enjoy sunning themselves atop the other next
      door neighbour's big evergreens. The Downy WP and Flicker seem to be
      enjoying the unsalted peanut butter thickly spread on the tree trunk in
      the backyard.

      Happy birding,

      - Mary Ann and Larry, Swift Current, SK
      50° 17' 00" N - 107° 48' 00" W

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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