Date: 4/4/17 10:13 am
From: DAVID A LEATHERMAN <daleatherman...>
Subject: [cobirds] Denver Zoo (Denver) on April 3
Highlights of a wonderful day of photography with my oldest son Matt at the Denver Zoo yesterday:

Common Grackles were present in numbers much expanded beyond the normal group that overwinters in the waterfowl compound (saw my FOY in the Fort Collins area as I went to the car to drive to Denver).

European Starlings coming within a clawed foot of losing their lives to a pursuing Secretarybird. The latter sauntered up to them nonchalantly, then made a rapid, unsuccessful, at least while we watched, dash. The secretarybird is in the genus Sagittarius, the mythological Greek archer, presumably because the plumes on the back of the secretarybird head resemble arrows in a quiver. One account I read indicates adult birds are not a particularly prominent part of this generalist, grassland predator's native diet.

White-eared Catbird from New Guinea eating an "American" Cockroach (which possibly is really native to Africa) not provided by its keepers within its glassed-in cage inside the Bird House, chronically infested with cockroaches and house mice.


Double-crested Cormorants making zoo overflights to get nest sticks somewhere to the north (golf course?). Their grunting in the City Park colony would make an interesting

spectrogram (similar to Congressional debate?).

Not a bird thing, but a food thing: Komodo Monitor (lizard, from which birds are descended) eating a 2-3 pound dressed rabbit provided for its weekly Monday feeding (eaten in three rapid-succession gulps, wow, followed by lots of water drinking and mouth wiping on rocks).

Dave Leatherman

Fort Collins

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