Date: 8/4/17 1:31 pm From: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...> Subject: IBET Again At Montrose Beach & Techny Basin Friday 8-4-17
Hello Bird People,
With the rain & north winds I wanted to see if new birds had come in at Montrose & if the water levels had gone way up at Techny Basin. Only slight shorebird changes at Montrose & yes the water was WAY up at Techny. The large mud flat at Techny North is now almost no mud flat with very little shorebird habitat remaining.
Montrose Beach (6:15-9:15 a.m.)
In the Protected Beach area were Killdeer (2) & Semipalmated Plover (1) & that was it. Yesterday's young Spotted Sandpiper was not seen by me. One Great Blue Heron remains in the channel along the pier.
On the main swimming beach the flooded "Lake Montrose Beach" has greatly expanded & along the edges were Killdeer (1), Semipalmated Plover (1), Pectoral (4), Least (5) & Semipalmated (2) Sandpipers. Yesterday's Lesser Yellowlegs was seemingly gone. Another Great Blue was standing in the flooded beach water & 3 Caspian Terns were among over 200 Ring Billed & 4 Herring Gulls. Hundred's of Swallows were all over the beach & the lawn areas with (again) most being Barn but today there were quite a few Cliff Swallows as well. Also a few Rough Winged, Bank & about 15 Purple Martins. Helping to correctly count shorebirds were Ted W, Chris ?, Dave A, Jill N & Andrew A. Had a lot of trouble getting the correct count for Semipalmated Sandpipers as at 1st I thought there were 2 but using Ted's scope they all seemed to be Least but later Ted & Chris had 1. Later still Andrew & Jill had 2 both of which I saw well. So I ended up back where I was in the 1st place!
After everyone else had left I decided to do one of my shorebird watches where I stay in one place & see what if anything arrives & leaves. Stood on the south edge of Lake Montrose for about 45 min during which time the 2 beach grooming machines did their best to flush all the birds by driving as close to the water as possible. Also, today was a big day for off leash running dogs on the swimming beach. So not the best day for I.D. work.
Then a somewhat larger shorebird landed in the water. Not as big as a Lesser Yellowlegs but almost. In fact that's what I thought it was at 1st. But it would NOT stand still & 4 times it flew & landed getting farther & farther away. Before I could get to where it was it flew again, went higher & higher & then went south without returning. Guess I failed the I.D. test today as the bird would never stay put more than 30 seconds & was never close. Based on the size & it's down curved bill I'd guess it was a Stilt Sandpiper but I surely could not prove it. Yours truly needs a better look than I had today. But keep checking in case it returns & you get a better look. I hate it when something interesting arrives & then leaves before I can properly deal with it!
As I was afraid of the water levels were way up at Techny & the mud flats were almost gone at Techny North & the little remaining bit of it was water logged. Had 37 Killdeer yesterday & 9 today. Had 15 Pectorals yesterday & 1 today. But there were about 50 Swallows & to my surprise most of them were Cliff Swallows! Again I saw 1 Black Crowned Night Heron but this time it was a young one.
As most of today's birds were the same as yesterday's birds & I will go with the Mystery Shorebird as Bird-Of-The-Day. At least it provided some excitement & it may have been a fairly good lake front bird if my guess was correct. Better viewing luck next time.
Al Stokie Again close to home in Cook County
------------------------------------ Posted by: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> ------------------------------------