Date: 3/17/17 1:10 am From: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...> Subject: IBET Cook County-Chicago Botanic Garden & Techny North Thursday 3-16-17
Hello Bird People,
Really got a lot of walking in this a.m. from 8 to 11:30 a.m. at the CBG. I will say that about half of all the water areas are frozen but most of the ducks are in the pond just south of the Bell Tower Island. A few Mergansers in the the North Lake & in the silver of open water at the north east edge of the B.Brown Pond were a few more "puddle" ducks. Other than that it's all ice although with the temps going up that won't last too long. Land birds pretty much the same as always with only 1 new species having arrived. Nothing really special today but there was a good mix of ducks & land birds to look at & count so I was kept busy. Here's my site list:
Chicago Botanic Garden (8-11:30 a.m.)
P.B. Grebe (1) Canada Goose (34, scattered) Wood Duck (1-PR & 1-M at the B.Brown Pond) Mallard (27, scattered) Green Winged Teal (9) Gadwall (5 at the B.Brown Pond) Lesser Scaup (3-M & 1-F) Ring Necked Duck (1-M) Bufflehead (2-PR) Common Goldeneye (17) Hooded Merganser (1-PR) Red Breasted Merganser (3-M & 1-F in the North Lake) (Unless otherwise stated the above duck species were in the pond just south of the Bell Tower Island) Cooper's Hawk (1 very close in a tree) Ring Billed Gull (4) Mourning Dove (4) Red Bellied Woodpecker (3) Downy Woodpecker (1-M) Chickadee (6) W.B. Nuthatch (heard 1) Robins (40-45, many back to eating Juniper berries as the snow covers the lawns) CEDAR WAXWING (A group of 6 near Spider Island) (I saw Cedar Waxwings on Jan 1st & 2nd but these are the 1st since then.) Cardinal (4) FOX SPARROW (1) Song Sparrow (3-4, some singing) Junco (6-8) Red Winged Blackbird (~25) Grackle (9-10) House Finch (5 with 2 singing) Goldfinch (8-10) House Sparrow (8-9)
That's 30 species at the CBG of which 10 species were ducks, more duck species than previously I've been seeing here.
Techny North (1:20-1:50 p.m.)
John Leonard's adult BALD EAGLE was still here in the small tree mentioned by John. Unlike John I did venture out to see what ducks were there but stayed well away from the Eagle which ignored me as long as I didn't get any closer. Other birds were:
Mallard (18-20) Shoveler (16-M & 2-F) Pintail (the continuing female) Green Winged Teal (34-36) Wilson's Snipe (groups of 6 & 4 on the unfrozen part of the mud flat) Ring Billed Gull (2) Starling (a group of 9 in a tall tree)
For the 1st time in several visits I found no Kestrels nor Red Tailed Hawks. I had finished my counts when the Eagle decided to exit it's tree & made a pass along the waterway which caused every single duck to fly away but about 1/2 of them came right back. Thank you Eagle for allowing me to complete the counts before you went on your way. It flew off to the south toward the south part of Techny Basin.
Bird-Of-The-Day to the very large but calm, regal looking adult Bald Eagle & Runners-Up to the finally returning Cedar Waxwings. I ended up with 12 species of ducks at the 2 locations & I had a brief visit with birder Cindy M at the CBG.
License Plate Of The Day to one from New Mexico parked at the CBG but yesterday I saw a "mega plate" near Joliet which was one from NEW BRUNSWICK which may be the 1st one I've ever seen before although I may have seen one so long ago I don't remember it. It was a good thing I saw that plate yesterday as I failed to find any of the "white birds" (Owls & Pelicans) mentioned by Jeff Smith on Sunday.
Al Stokie Close to home in Cook County today
------------------------------------ Posted by: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> ------------------------------------