Date: 4/2/18 8:57 am
From: 'Steven Mlodinow' via Colorado Birds <cobirds...>
Subject: [cobirds] Weld County Yesterday
Greetings All

Yesterday, Dave Ely and I managed to reach 100 species in Weld County without setting out to do so
Indeed, our day started before dawn at Stewarts' Pond followed by Lower Latham. Bird activity was much lower than a week before when Sean and I visited those areas, and the temperature was much lower as well -- 24F. And the wind was blowing, which my weather apps had not indicated likely the night before.

It was when I commented on the wind that Dave looked at his weather app, and it had changed mightily from the day before. Snow was at 100% in 10 minutes. My app said the snow was going to last at least an hour. And the wind, well that prediction had risen as much as the temperature had fallen.

We tossed about a variety of ideas. Grover was nearly windless. Hmmmm. Snow, maybe lotsa birds by the roadside and those ST Grouse would be easier to spot against a blanket of white.

So, off we went.

We were wrong about lotsa roadside birds. And what we had were only larks. The grouse, on the other hand, were spotted easily by Ely -- but not against the snow; instead, perched on wires 100 feet above the ground (well, one was; two others were more than 50 feet above the ground). In all, we did see 9, including some on snow.

We decided to bail back to places with water. We drove thru Grover having made the stated decision to bypass birding there, and as we pulled into town, we saw 75 robins sitting on the road. In the next 20 minutes, we saw a nice assortment of juncos and a small mixed flock or Eastern and Mountain Bluebirds.

And so the day went, full of surprises.
Other highlights included:

Chipping Sparrow -- Adams and Bunkers Reservoirs
Northern Shrike -- Work Station, Crow Valley
Western Scrub-Jay -- willows and brush near intersection of Weld Co Rds 74 and 47
5 goose species at Clark Lake n of Eaton + Ross's x Cackling and Snow x Cackling (and thousands of Cacklings)
3 Mountain Chickadees -- Eaton Cemetery
Savannah Sparrow -- L Latham
Swainson's Hawk -- soaring over fields between Latham and Platteville
3 Lincoln's Sparrows -- Marshy area just e of Platteville
female Barrow's Goldeneye -- Firestone Gravel Ponds.

It was a pretty astonishing day, from inches of snow and fog to windless sunny landscapes.

Good Birding
Steve Mlodinow
Longmont CO

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