The North wickiup Boat Ramp was clear of ice, and very calm today, only the constant weird noise from moving ice could be heard but for Two raucous Clarke's Nutcrackers behind me, and a single Horned Grebe, its call carrying far across the Reservoir. Just off the boat ramp was a mixed raft of diving Duck, and a distant Bald Eagle attempted to swim ashore with its catch, not sure if it was successful or not, it was very far out.
Canvasback 26 Lesser Scaup 102 Ruddy Duck 281 Buffleheads scattered Common Goldeneye 18+ Common Merganser 2 Pied-billed Grebe 1 Bald Eagle 3
Eurasian Wigeon 1 male American Wigeon c15 Northern Pintail 6 Gadwall 2 Common Merganser 4 Canada Goose 60 red Crossbill 14
On my way home at the Equestrian Center on Horse Butte Road I had very nice looks at a male Prairie subspecies of Merlin. Sitting high in a snag, it returned Three times to exact same perch between hunting forays, reminiscent of a Flycatcher. I don't recall ever seeing this behavior before. Last Winter One perched in our yard, I'm wondering if it could be a returning bird has it was only a mile from our house?