Date: 1/12/18 12:28 pm
From: Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...>
Subject: IBET What A Difference A Day Makes Weather-Wise (Evanston Lakefront) Friday 1-12-18
Hello Bird People,

Decided to go somewhere I would not be tempted to look for those big,
elusive Woodpeckers so I went to the shores of Lake Michigan from
Evanston to Wilmette. For almost 3 hours I got to battle some very
ferocious winds which on several occasions moved me over a few feet
when I tried to stand still & scan the lake. At least the winds did
not knock me over! I must say it was an exciting day to be walking
outside. Yesterday it was 57 degrees & today 23.

South Blvd Beach, Lee Street Beach Through Burnham Shores Park (7:50-8:30 a.m.)

Scanned the lake here but all I could find were 55 Canada Geese flying
inland from the lake & on or above the lake were Goldeneye (6), R.B.
Mergansers (3-F) & Herring Gulls (3 fly-bys). Not a very good start.

Dawes Park Boat Ramp Area (8:40-8:50 a.m.)

All the birds were in the boat ramp enclosure & included:

Mallard (1-PR), Goldeneye (1-M & 4-F), R.B. Merganser (4-F) & Herring
Gull (2 fly-bys)
Not very good here either but things got a little better at the next 2 stops.

N.U. Land/Lakefill Lagoon (8:50-9:50 a.m.)

In the Lagoon were Mallards (17), Goldeneye (1-M & 3-F), R.B.
Merganser (1-PR) plus both
Ringed Billed (10) & Herring (8) Gulls. On the lawns nearby were 16
Canada Geese but the one bird highlight of the day was when I found a
sub-adult BLACK CROWNED NIGHT HERON sleeping in a Juniper type tree
along the lagoon edge. Later it flew from the tree & landed along the
rocky shore where most of the Mallards were resting & a full adult
BLACK CROWNED NIGHT HERON was hunting something in the tall grass
although I'm not sure what it was after, maybe a mouse? You may recall
there were 5 or 6 wintering here last Winter. My main reason for
coming here was to see if any were here this Winter & yes at least 2
are. The waves were so high & the wind so strong I could see nothing
in the lake.

Wilmette Harbor In Gillson Park (10-10:40 a.m.)

Again I could see nothing in the lake but in the harbor were Canada
Geese (6), REDHEAD (1-M),
Goldeneye (9), Red Breasted (2-F) & COMMON MERGANSER (4-M & 2-F) & one
adult Herring Gull. When both species of Mergansers are together you
can see how much bigger the Commons are than the Red Breasted. Flying
from the Coast Guard building to the harbor office were 2 House
Sparrows which proved to be the only land birds seen today along the
lakefront although I did see one flying Red Tailed Hawk on the way

Bird-Of-The-Day to the 2 Black Crowned Night Herons which have somehow
survived almost 3 weeks of zero or near zero temps before the 2 day
warm up. Runner-Up to the nice looking male Common Mergansers.

Big Day For License Plates

I could tell I was in Evanston by the high quality of the roadside out
of state plates. You can't count plates on the N.U. campus but near
South Blvd beach is o.k. even though it's probably just cars owned by
students in their off campus parking areas.

Plate Of The Day to one from DELAWARE in the Evanston shopping
district & Runner-Up to one from UTAH near the South Blvd Beach. Also
saw a Montana plate but I'm not counting it as there were university
buildings near by Dawes Park & so it was "on campus" in my opinion.

Al Stokie
Covering Cook County lakefront parks & beaches

Posted by: Al Stokie <alstokie99...>


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