Klehm Arboretum on Saturday afternoon

I visited Klehm for 90 minutes from 12:30-2:00 pm on Saturday, 1/13.  Highlights were 22 Common Redpolls in a flock with 10 siskins, 2 Hermit Thrushes, 16 Cedar Waxwings, and 8 Red-breasted Nuthatches.  There was only 1 Robin.

I heard the redpolls before I saw them.  After I heard them, I played a recording of their calls and they immediately flew in with the siskins and began feeding in birch catkins.  They were in the area of trail marker #10 on the west loop paved trail.

Klehm is closed on Sudays during the winter.

Ipsen Rd

After work today I went out to Ipsen Rd Conservation Area in Boone County. I was mainly looking for Short-eared Owls which I was unsuccessful in locating. I did find a couple of Rough-legged Hawks, one out in the Elmurst/Chicago Wetland CA, and one in Ipsen RD CA, and when I was watching one, a Merlin flew in from the east and landed in Ipsen. There was a Great Blue Heron in Ipsen, and when I was walking down the path on the south side, I had a Northern Harrier flying rather close to me.

NW Winnebago on January 7

I looked for birds in the NW partof Winnebago County started around 10:00 am until 2:00pm today, then went back to Ferguson at 4:00 pm and met Phil D, Steve G, & Joel N to look for Short-eared Owls .  Highlights were 37 Wild Turkeys on Yale Bridge Rd. just W of the Blackhawk Tree Farm, a male harrier at Yale Bridge/Prairie Rd, a dark-morph Rough-legged Hawk at Pec Wetlands along Blair Road.  3 immature White-crowned Sparrows were in a large mixed species flock of sparrows on Moody Road.  Over 75 Lapland Longspurs were also on Moody with many  Horned Larks.

At Ferguson, we saw 1 Northern Shrike and 2 Short-eared Owls.  A fly-over Belted Kingfisher near the pines was odd.

Sat. Afternoon birding

Joyce and I went to Klehm this afternoon and found some of the usual birds.  Cedar Waxwings, White-breasted Nuthatches, Red-breasted Nuthatches, one Robin, Chickadees, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker and Juncos.  It was very quiet with few bird singing .  We drove out west and found Lapland Lonspurs, Horned Larks and more Juncos.  We also found a Red-winged Blackbird on Kelly road just east of Hosington road near a farm house.  It was on the north side of the road about 3:45 pm.

Boone Cty 2017

Last year I started seriously birding in Boone Cty, working over the as much of the county as I could. In the end I managed to get 198 species of birds, starting with Great Horned Owl on January 5th and ending with Northern Shrike on December 30th.

I was hoping to crack 200, but that didn’t happen. Some that I couldn’t find or missed that I am hoping to grab this year are, American White Pelican, Northern Pintail, Mute & Trumpeter Swans, all 3 Scoters, Red-shouldered Hawk, Peregrine Falcon, a few Warblers, some of the Sparrows, Carolina Wren, and Snowy Owl.

I did manage to find American & Least Bittern, Virginia Rail, Common Gallinule, Tundra Swan, Bobolink, Brewer’s Blackbird, Merlin, Lesser Black-backed Gull, and Black-billed Cuckoo.

I also added 3 birds to Boone County’s bird list on eBird, American Wigeon, Summer Tanager, and Northern Saw-whet Owl.

I am hoping to cap 200 this year, this morning I went out and managed to start off with 26 species starting with Red-bellied Woodpecker and adding to that Rough-legged Hawk, Wilson’s Snipe, Lapland Longspur, Snow Bunting, Horned Lark, and Northern Shrike.

Edit: I forgot to mention this but early in the year, I came across an article in the IOS archives about places to bird in Boone Cty by Dan Williams which was incredibly helpful, especially for places in Boone that are not BCCD or park district properties.

Rock Cut CBC

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Rock Cut CBC this year. We managed to have a rather cold day for it and several counters were having difficulty in finding birds. However we did manage to find 57 species on count day and 5 count week species. which beat the previous high of 48.

We had 13 field counters and 5 feeder watchers, which is a few more counters then usual, which made it so teams could be assigned to areas that don’t generally get counted. We beat several records, but we also had several notable no shows, including Gulls, Belted Kingfisher, and Eurasian Collared-Dove. Waterfowl in general were low (very little open water), as were hawks. One area we did particularly well in was owls, this count usually gets 1-2 species with 2-3 individuals, we got 4 species and 11 individuals.

Here is the list, species marked with an * would be new high count species. Species marked with ** are first time sightings on this count. Count week birds are cw.

cw Greater White-fronted Goose
43 Cackling Goose*
3231 Canada Goose
1 Gadwall
4 American Black Duck
108 Mallard
1 Lesser Scaup
3 Common Goldeneye
54 Wild Turkey
1 Great Blue Heron**
1 Bald Eagle
cw Northern Harrier
2 Sharp-shinned Hawk
3 Cooper’s Hawk
14 Red-tailed Hawk
cw American Coot
1 Wilson’s Snipe**
106 Rock Pigeon
59 Mourning Dove
3 Eastern Screech Owl**
3 Great Horned Owl*
2 Barred Owl
1 Northern Saw-whet Owl**
3 Red-headed Woodpecker**
49 Red-bellied Woodpecker*
52 Downy Woodpecker*
6 Hairy Woodpecker
5 Northern Flicker
1 Pileated Woodpecker
2 American Kestrel
1 Merlin**
1 Northern Shrike**
76 Blue Jay*
65 American Crow
36 Horned Lark*
104 Black-capped Chickadee
8 Tufted Titmouse*
2 Red-breasted Nuthatch
42 White-breasted Nuthatch
3 Brown Creeper
1 Winter Wren
cw Golden-crowned Kinglet
16 Eastern Bluebird
16 American Robin
278 European Starling
63 Cedar Waxwing
cw Lapland Longspur
184 American Tree Sparrow*
3 Fox Sparrow*
379 Dark-eyed Junco*
2 White-crowned Sparrow**
23 White-throated Sparrow**
2 Song Sparrow
10 Swamp Sparrow*
105 Northern Cardinal*
10 Common Grackle
43 House Finch
8 Purple Finch**
38 Pine Siskins**
110 American Goldfinch*
431 House Sparrow*