Date: 3/13/17 2:43 pm From: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...> Subject: IBET Cook County-Park Ridge/Des Plaines Small Lakes Monday 3-13-17
Hello Bird People,
Waited a while before starting to let the roads shape up after the snow. And then stayed close to home in case we got more snow. Covered 4 deep forest preserve lakes & Lake Opeka in Des Plaines. But before I do the site lists I have a request for local birders near Des Plaines.
On the golf course "greens" on the west side of Lake Opeka there is a small number of Canada Geese & with them is one white morph SNOW GOOSE, or I think it's a Snow Goose? It doesn't seem small enough to be a Ross's Goose & it seems to have a "grin patch" but here's the problem. The grassy area is snow covered so the geese have to go beneath the snow to get at the grass underneath. This means the bill usually can't be seen at all when under the snow & even when not under the snow the bill is snow covered from being under the snow. Therefore, although I think there's a "grin patch" I can't really be sure as I can't get a good look without the snow problems. So if anyone can take a look you may be lucky enough to see the bill better than I did & if so please report what you see & say which goose species you think it is. It's a Snow Goose to me unless someone can prove otherwise. Now for the short lists:
Here I wanted to look for the Loon reported from here by Marjorie & eventually I did find it.
COMMON LOON (1 in almost full breeding plumage) Great Blue Heron (3 on the lake banks) Canada Goose (24 on the lake, in the river & backwaters) Mallard (36 in the same 3 places as the geese) Shoveler (1-M) Hooded Merganser (1-PR in the river) Red Breasted Merganser (38 in the lake) Killdeer (1) Ring Billed (29) & Herring (2) Gulls Land birds were Crow (1) & Robins (3)
Lake Opeka In Des Plaines (12-12:25 p.m. with most of that time spent trying to see the above mentioned goose's bill)
Canada Goose (18) SNOW GOOSE (1 white morph) Mallard 2-PR) Ring Billed (56) & Herring (at least 2) Gulls
Axehead Lake (12:35-12:40 p.m.)(Again a waste of time)
Mallard (1-PR) Land birds were Pigeons, Robins & a Cardinal
I should mention that with the snow covering all the lawns the Robins have retreated to the wet parking lots where they are actually finding & eating worms.
Bird-Of-The-Day will be a tie between my 1st Common Loon of the year & what I think is a Snow Goose as I have never seen any goose species other than Canada at Lake Opeka before. Best Dressed Bird Of The Day to the 2 fine looking male Shovelers.
Al Stokie Close to home in Cook County today
------------------------------------ Posted by: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> ------------------------------------