Date: 3/15/17 7:03 pm From: Francis Commercon <siskinbyderailleur...> Subject: [cobirds] Pacific Wren at Grey Rock Trail, Larimer County
This morning I took a new birder out to Grey Rock Trail up the Poudre Canyon. In addition to a pair of AMERICAN DIPPERS clearly engaging in nest building activities where the trail crosses over the Poudre River, we found a skulking PACIFIC WREN along the summit trail, just where this trail first crosses the creek as you hike northward and upward. The habitat was of dense dead grasses and weeds and tangles of shrubs along the banks of the creek. The bird called loudly in agitation as we crossed the creek. I recorded its call with my iPhone and later confirmed that it was indeed a Pacific Wren (not Winter, because of higher and more terse notes). The compact little hazelnut-brown bird popped out into view and gave spectacular looks. Very faint eyeline, tiny stubby tail, ventral side just about as cinnamon brown as the dorsal side and definitely no white on the throat. It even sang two rounds of its gorgeous song up close!
Its cousin, the Canyon Wren, sang loudly from a nearby cliff and a female Hairy Woodpecker knocked away at a burnt Ponderosa fervently. Pygmy Nuthatches squeaked and flitted about in the high pine boughs. A flock of Steller's Jays gave my hiking partner stunning views; a Townsend's Solitaire serenaded us from just up the hill. And the sun shown strongly upon the land as the soil came alive with ants, spiders, wasps, and even a millipede. We are fortunate to have inherited such a marvelous world.