Date: 12/30/17 9:03 pm From: Eric Secker <esecker...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...> Subject: IBET Carp. Dam Fox River - California Gull
Best bird in our area for the Rutland Christmas Bird Count today was an adult CALIFORNIA GULL at Carpentersville Dam - my second ever sighting of this species for Illinois which usually eludes me. Unfortunately the gulls have been turning over a lot and it wasn't seen again after a Bald Eagle flushed the group and only half returned. There were also two "Thayer's" ICELAND GULLS today, an adult and a second-year bird. As many as 17 BALD EAGLES have been hanging around the dam (though generally you'll only see 2-4 close). Ducks at the dam or below have included Mallards, Am. Black Duck, Common Merganser, Common Goldeneye, and Hooded Merganser. Up to 15 Great Blue Herons have also been hanging out above the dam. Yesterday we watched two Coyotes walking out on the ice and flushing all the herons which was a weird sight in the 5 degree weather.
We had over 30+ participants for the first ever Rutland CBC who were up for braving the challenge of the cold. So far everyone I checked with still had all ten fingers at the end of the day so I'm considering that a success. I drove a lot more than usual and probably the only record I broke was number of clothing layers worn, but I went home with some great sightings, new friends, and overall feeling like it wasn't that bad dealing with the cold, though I definitely look forward to warmer years than this one in the future.
We're still confirming final totals for the count but overall we had a good variety of species represented even though many of the longer cold walks through forest preserves didn't produce many birds. That challenge was countered somewhat by all the birding by car done today, all the birds congregating right on the river and recently plowed country roadsides, and birds coming in at feeders. If you didn't join us this year, but want to be on the list for in the future, feel free to send me an email.
Eric & Sally Secker West Dundee, Kane Co.
------------------------------------ Posted by: Eric Secker <esecker...> ------------------------------------