Date: 10/21/17 5:51 pm
From: Pete Janzen <pete.janzen...>
Subject: Fall River and Toronto birds October 21
8 members and friends of Wichita Audubon spent the day birding at Fall
River and Toronto Reservoirs.  The high winds were sustained throughout
the day but we found a few birds of interest.

Pre-dawn we had 2 or 3 Greater Prairie-chickens fly over US 400 near
Beaumont (Butler County)

At Fall River Reservoir (Greenwood County) we estimated 120,000
Franklin's Gulls.  DC Cormorants, White Pelicans and Am. Coots were all
in the hundreds of birds.- There were at least 5 Bald Eagles.  Two Least
Sandpipers were on a muddy shoreline area.

At Toronto Reservoir (Woodson County) there was a substantial muddy spit
off to the west of  of Cross Timbers St. Park.  This had a surprising
number of shorebirds including a number of Am. Avocets, 70 LB
Dowitchers, 1 Pectoral, 4 Lesser Yellowlegs, 2 Least Sandpipers and a
Sanderling.  Lots of pelicans, cormorants and Franklin's Gulls as well. 
Franklin's were also in the thousands at Toronto but we made no effort
to determine total numbers on the lake.  There were four dead White
Pelicans on the spit.  Impossible to say if these were dead from natural
causes/disease/toxins or if they were shot.   We then visited the pecan
orchard area adjacent to Toronto Wildlife Area just north of Toronto. 
That is one of those places that always seems to turn up good birds, and
we found some today.  It was mostly out of the wind and birds were
active.  There were 2 Pine Warblers (new for all-time Woodson Co. list)
seen well by the entire group, as well as a Black-throated Green seen by
some of our party.  The surprise of the day was a Yellow-billed Cuckoo
lurking in vines about 30 ft off of the ground.  I checked BOK when I
got home and there are two Kansas records from later in the fall than
this, but it was for sure the latest sighting any of us had observed.

We quit and headed for home at about the right time as the rain was
moving in.  There is a depressingly huge amount of sericia lespediza in
many areas around both lakes.  In general cold-weather waterfowl had not
yet moved in but I bet they are on the heels of this front that came
through this evening.

Pete Janzen Wichita, KS <pete.janzen...>

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