Date: 11/3/17 8:06 pm From: Alan Buriak <a_buriak...> Subject: Waterfowl, Late Eastern Phoebe - Butler County
Late this afternoon myself and Sam Gutherie met at Glade Run Lake in southern Butler County to see if any waterfowl had showed up yet in what would be the first full waterfowl season since the lake reopened. The visit did produce a Hooded Merganser, 3 American Wigeons, and 2 Gadwall, however perhaps most notable were a high amount of Pied-billed Grebes. Just from the pier with a scope, we carefully and conservatively counted 10 visible simultaneously. Then there were another 4 at the far back end of the backwaters, bringing the total to 14. This is all in a not-so-big lake. Furthermore, with the level of vegetation that has been left growing in the lake when they refilled it, large portions of the far sides of the lake (including a couple sheltered and shallow coves) are concealed, so there were certainly even more than 14, perhaps even significantly more. While I see Pied-billed Grebes everywhere it seems at times, it is always a lone bird or a pair scattered here or there. Never have I witnessed the concentration that we did today. The level of vegetation providing cover for waterfowl in this lake seems to have set it up to become a top waterfowl spot in the area, however for that same reason, viewing is a challenge. The pier provides decent views of the main part of the lake, but to get to the largest area of shallower water, which was where the Wigeon and Gadwall were, you have to hike the trail back 1/2 mile to a mile, which will provide you with a few views of the back of the lake, albeit also partially obstructed by the vegetation growing out of the lake. While hiking back the trail, I also encountered a late Eastern Phoebe, which is the first November eBird record for Butler County. Sam and I have discussed the potential of this lake and intend to keep a close eye on it the whole way through to spring, as it would be nice to get a full record of what shows up in the first full season since the lake was refilled. It is also much closer and more convenient for us to hit it on a semi-regular basis than some of the much larger sites, like Lake Arthur, so it is filling a nice birding niche in the area.