Date: 12/31/17 1:16 pm
From: julie long <mayhill10...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...>
Subject: Re: IBET Carp. Dam Fox River - California Gull
And thanks to you Eric, for all of your effort to start and run a new count circle.  Lots of time and effort went into the event from you and Sally.  So glad you got the gull as a reward. I had a great, though not always toasty, time participating in the count. Julie Long, STC

On Saturday, December 30, 2017 11:03 PM, "Eric Secker <esecker...> [ILbirds]" <ILbirds-noreply...> wrote:


  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.

Good birding,

Eric & Sally Secker
West Dundee, Kane Co.

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