Date: 12/24/17 8:20 am
From: Joel Geier <joel.geier...>
Subject: [COBOL] Hart Mountain CBC on December 20, 2017
The Hart Mountain CBC took place on Hart Mountain National Antelope
Refuge and adjoining parts of the Warner Valley on Wednesday, December
20th.

Refuge manager Laurel Kullerud organized the count and got us set up in
the bunkhouse on Tuesday evening, despite an incoming storm with high
winds that made walking difficult. The wind tore a sheet of 3/4-inch
plywood off of the winter housing for the air conditioning unit. It went
cartwheeling out into the sagebrush, but we chased it down and secured
it back where it belonged, adding a few boulders and a log to weigh it
down.

Snowfall overnight produced drifts that were up to 18 inches deep in one
spot that Clay Crofton managed to step into while hiking down Rock Creek,
but generally less than a few inches on the main roads. Teams that worked
down in the Warner enjoyed mostly calm conditions and temperatures that
climbed up to 36 F by noon, but teams up on the plateau above the
escarpment reported breezy to windy conditions, with snow flurries in
the afternoon.

Down in the Warner Valley, several lakes had areas of open water, but
waterfowl were scarce, perhaps due to colder weather earlier in the
month. Due to windy conditions we didn't make any serious owling effort.

Despite this we found 37 species on count-day, plus at least four count-
week (cw) species as noted in the list below. Species that were new for
the checklist are indicated by (*).

Mallard 2 inflow to Hart Lake
Ring-necked Duck(*) 1 male on Hart Lake
Ruddy Duck(*) 5 Swamp Lake in Warner Valley
Bald Eagle 2 (1 adult, 1 imm)
Northern Harrier 3 Warner Wetlands
Red-tailed Hawk 6 Warner Valley
Ferruginous Hawk 1 just north of Plush
Rough-legged Hawk 1 Warner Valley
Golden Eagle 8 at least 5 in Warner Valley and along
escarpment, 3 up on plateau.
American Kestrel 5 Warner Valley
Chukar 6 Hart Canyon area
GREATER SAGE-GROUSE 7 west of headquarters
California Quail cw Warner Valley
Wilson's Snipe 1 in sagebrush along Rock Creek(?)
Rock Pigeon 2 escarpment
Mourning Dove 1 visiting feeder in Warner Valley
Eurasian Collared-Dove 1 visiting feeder in Warner Valley
Great Horned Owl cw Warner Valley ranch
Northern Flicker 10
Prairie Falcon cw 1 near Plush on morning of 21 Dec
Horned Lark 128 incl. flock of 110 along road to Blue Sky
CALIFORNIA SCRUB-JAY 1 visiting feeder in Warner Valley
(necklace and other field marks clearly seen).
Black-billed Magpie 44 mainly around cattle in Warner Valley
Common Raven 25 ditto
Mountain Chickadee 17 Blue Sky area
Bushtit 49 three flocks along escarpment
RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH 1 Blue Sky area
Canyon Wren cw 1 along road up to HQ on 19 Dec
BEWICK'S WREN 2 1 visiting feeder in Warner Valley;
1 at seep on escarpment above Hart Lk.
Townsend's Solitaire 30 mainly near Blue Sky
American Robin 249 mainly up on plateau and escarpment seeps
Northern Shrike 5 mainly in Warner Valley
Loggerhead Shrike 1 n. side of Hart Lake
European Starling 29 between Plush and Hart Lake
Spotted Towhee 2 Rock Creek sw. of headquarters
Song Sparrow 12 mainly in Warner Valley
White-crowned Sparrow 3 at Warner Wetlands interpretive site
HARRIS'S SPARROW(*) 1 imm. visiting feeder in Warner Valley
Dark-eyed (Oregon) Junco 88
" "(Slate-colored) Junco 2
Pine Siskin 4 visiting feeder in Warner Valley;
American Goldfinch 4 visiting feeder in Warner Valley;

A few LESSER GOLDFINCHES have also been visiting a feeder in the Warner
Valley recently, and might yet make it into the count-week list. A
probable PINK-SIDED JUNCO has also been seen; in addition to pinkish
flanks it appears larger than Oregon Juncos in the same flock, and has
dark lores. We're still hoping for photos to confirm this one.

Volunteers included Clay Crofton, Pat Grediagin, Jeff Picton, Jöelle
Fournier, Zachary McCoy, and Martha Geier. Thanks to all who made the
trek despite conditions that raised whitecaps on Lake Abert. Special
thanks to Laurel and Zack for helping us all get set up in the
bunkhouse on Tuesday evening, and to Jöelle and Zack for sharing their
feeder birds.

Happy winter birding,
Joel



--
Joel Geier
Camp Adair area north of Corvallis



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