Date: 1/8/18 8:42 pm
From: Jenn Rader <jennrader34...>
Subject: Raptors in southcentral to southeastern KS & some Blackwolf CBC highlights, 1/6 & 1/8 2018
I went back to my hometown of Wilson this weekend to help with the
Blackwolf CBC. This is always a fun count for me. I drove Rob Penner, Byron
Grauerholz and Caleb Kroker around the southern portion of the count, and
it was a great day, even if it was slow for several stops.
Some highlights for our group were several feeding birds of prey such as a
Prairie Falcon, Cooper’s Hawk and Am. Kestrel. We watched a bobcat walk,
then run through an ag field around 10am. We came across two groups of
Mountain Bluebirds, one group totaling about 25 with a Townsend’s Solitaire
in the mix, the other 33. Mountain Bluebird was a life bird for one in our
crew, making the whole day that much sweeter. We also enjoyed watching a
Belted Kingfisher cough up a pellet, a well-camouflaged Barred Owl taking a
snooze, 4 hunting Rough-legged Hawks, and ended with some Short-eared Owls
south of Wilson.
I had a meeting in Hutchinson this morning and opted to cut over to the
Newton, and then Potwin area before getting on HWY 400 to head back to
Galena. I decided to count roadside raptors on my way.
From Hutchinson to Galena, I ended up with a grand total of 4 Bald Eagles
(all adults), 26 American Kestrels, 6 Rough-legged Hawks, 14 Northern
Harriers, 255 Red-tailed Hawks (one a beautiful dark Harlan’s) and 1
Red-shouldered Hawk. I’m sure I missed a few!

Not far east of El Dorado, I watched a Red-tailed dive down and land right
beside a second Red-tailed that had already caught something and was eating
on it. Not long after, I saw two Red-tailed’s at what appeared to be a very
smashed deer carcass. An interesting drive, for sure!

Happy New Year and Good Birding!

Jenn Rader
Galena, KS
Jenn Rader
Galena, KS

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