Date: 3/6/17 1:59 pm
From: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...>
Subject: IBET Searching For Recently Reported Kane County Birds Monday 36-17
Hello Bird People,

Since I only carefully covered 1 place today this report should not be
as overly long as was yesterday's. I saw on IBET that Marion M
reported a Northern Shrike at Nelson Lake & Brendon reported many
birds at several Kane County locations so I decided that was the place
to go today mainly as I wanted that Shrike having failed to find all
the other ones reported in 2017. I also decided to walk in from the
east side lot so that I could check the waterfowl while on the way to
Audubon Bridge where the Shrike was seen. I will say that this is a
fairly long walk & sections of the trail are quite muddy so if you go
be prepared.

As I neared the bridge area I saw another birder coming in on the
Seavy pathway. Turned out it was Scott Cohrs & I was glad to see him
as he usually sees birds quicker than I do. But Scott or no Scott we
did NOT find the Shrike. Decided to return the way we came in so as to
re-cover the hedge & small tree area near the bridge which looked like
an excellent Shrike area not to mention that the Shrike had been seen
there before. But still no Shrike & Scott was out of time needing to
get to work, a problem we "old retired guys" no longer have. While
making an emergency "pit stop" after Scott left I saw a bird land at
tree top level & it was a gray & black bird not another Red Wing.
Called Scott back & got it in a scope view. We are sure it is a
Northern & not a Loggerhead but you need to check for that on Shrikes
seen in March as both are possible although Loggerhead is more
unlikely. This may have been the 1st time I have ever spotted a target
bird before Scott saw it! I was helped by the fact that he was walking
away when it arrived & not looking in that direction.

Shortly thereafter I spotted 2 big white birds flying over the water
which we figured would be Pelicans but they turned out to be 2 black
billed Trumpeter Swans. They also turned out be a new Kane County
species for me. Quite a bonus! Here's my full site list:

Nelson Lake Marsh Area (7:45-9:45 a.m.)

Great Blue Heron (1 fly-by)
TRUMPETER SWAN (2)
Canada Goose (25-28)
Mallard (8)
Gadwall (6)
Shoveler (12)
Green Winged Teal (few in flight)
Ring Necked Duck (~20)
Coots (~45)
NORTHERN HARRIER (1 hunting, not an adult male)
Red Tailed Hawk (1 or 2)
Kestrel (1 in flight)
SANDHILL CRANE (1-PR on the ground)
Killdeer (heard 1 in flight)
Gull Species? (Too far away but probably a Herring?)
Mourning Dove (1)
Blue Jay (2)
Chickadee (also 2)
EASTERN BLUEBIRD (5)
Robin (12-14)
Starling (4-5)
NORTHERN SHRIKE (1, not easy to find but had good looks once we did see it)
Cardinal (3-4)
Tree Sparrow (2)
Song Sparrow (4-5)
FOX SPARROW (1, got into a fight with a Purple Finch & the Fox Sparrow won)
Junco (15-20)
Red Winged Blackbird (25 or more)
EASTERN MEADOWLARK (3, FOY for me)
PURPLE FINCH (5-6, must of been males as they were singing but all I
saw were females)

Brendon had mentioned that both Meadowlark species were back at that
undeveloped Stonegate sub-division near Hampshire & I actually
remembered how to get there after all the times Brendon told me how.
As I arrived the wind was very, very strong & rain had just begun & I
thought there's no way anything would sit up & sing. But as happens
many times I was wrong as the WESTERN MEADOWLARK was singing away
although it was so low I could not see it. Finally after 10 min of
looking in the wind & rain I saw it on the top of a short post & had a
good look. I guess if that bird wanted to sing it was going to do so
no matter the conditions. I will also say that the Eastern Meadowlark
did not agree that singing was in order when I was there. If you need
directions to this place look at Brendon's IBET post from yesterday.

Bird-Of-The-Day to the N.Shrike which I had almost given up on for
this Winter season.
Runners-Up to the Western Meadowlark & my new Kane County Trumpeter Swans.
And you will note that I turned this post into a fairly long one after
all. Always happens!

Al Stokie
In Kane County only today


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Posted by: Al Stokie <alstokie99...>
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