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Birding trip to southwest counties.

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  • coenbrenda
    Greetings, Brenda and I spent Sunday through Tuesday looking for late fall migrating waterbirds. We found Jason s and Andrea s Greater Scaup and two
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 23, 2005
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      Brenda and I spent Sunday through Tuesday looking for late fall
      migrating waterbirds. We found Jason's and Andrea's Greater Scaup and
      two Red-breasted Mergansers one mile north of the town of Ridgway.
      They were still there Tuesday. The Hooded Mergansers are still on the
      Ridgway Reservoir. We did find a Double-crested Cormorant and 4
      California Gulls on Sunday.
      We found another good birding spot about two miles east of Montrose.
      It is the town water supply and can be reached off of San Miguel RD.
      San Miguel Rd. is just south of US-50. We drove the canal road from
      the east end of San Miguel RD. There are not any mean signs and the
      reservoir can be viewed from the east and south sides. It looks like
      it could have some real potential for waterbirds and shorebirds.
      On Monday 21st, the only good bird in Gunnison County was a Barrow's
      Goldeneye at the east end of Blue Mesa. There were lots of ducks and
      gulls and one Common Loon.
      Lake City was quite and we could only find two active feeders. The
      best birding was at Lake San Cristobal. Lots of common ducks and
      grebes were present.
      Driving south to Archuleta and Pogosa Springs was uneventful. There
      are few birds in the high country. We managed to spend some time in
      the hot pools at Pogosa. I had to drag Brenda, kicking and screaming,
      into the pools but I finally succeeded.
      The next morning, Tuesday 22nd, we did find a few good birds. We
      drove to Sullenberger Reservoir west of Pogosa. Best bird was a first
      year male Greater Scaup. This may be a new county record for
      Next we drove to the lake at Fairfield Inn along US-160. The pair of
      Trumpeter Swans(clipped wings) now have 4 first winter swans with
      them. I assume they are offsprings. The young swans are mobile so
      will they stay or will they leave. There were many ducks and geese to
      look through. We did find one Cackling Goose. From what I could tell
      I suspect it was a Richardson's. The goose was very small with a tiny
      Upon arriving back to the truck Eurasian Collared-Doves greeted us.
      This surely isn't the first county record for Archuleta. Two of them
      looked like hybrids, Morning Doves/Collared-Doves. Does this happen?
      We proceeded on to LaPlata County with two places on our list to
      check. Pastorius State Widlife Area was first. Lots of ducks but not
      much of interest so we traveled over to Zink's Pond. We were able to
      fill most of our LaPlata County duck holes at Zink's. Sure is nice to
      see Canvasbacks and Pintails. We did have a swan in a ditch. Finally
      it came into view and yes it was a Mute. What a red bill.

      This year we keep a year list. In early January we left for Belize
      and Guatemala. We returned in late March and birded only locally
      since. We did make a short time to Wyoming and southern Utah. The
      Cackling Goose was number 600 or about 30% of the bird species in
      North America. We now have a better appreciation for the effort some
      make to reach 700 plus just in ABA area. One BIG difference! We only
      spent about $3000 extra in driving down as far as Guatemala, not the
      $90,000 that is spent on big years in ABA regions.

      Happy birding,
      Coen and Brenda
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