Date: 5/31/18 2:27 pm From: Christopher Cudworth <cudworthfix...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...> Subject: Re: IBET Stalking The Black Tern (Again) Thursday 5-31-18
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, before the City of Batavia contracted an
engineering firm to scrape out the wetland at the corner of Fabyan Parkway
and Randall Road, there were black terns breeding annually at the southeast
We'd also find 20 species of ducks on that property each spring and fall.
Redhead, canvasback and many more. And black-bellied and golden plover
alighted in the fields where Walmart now stands.
In summer, I found babies of both Virginia and Sora Rail. There were
black-crowned night herons in a breeding colony in those cottonwoods.
Hunters pegged snipe in the fall, and the farmer with a hook for one hand
would chase us birders off the property now and then.
But we went there anyway, and one warm fall afternoon I wandered about
counting all the bird's nests in the small shrubs surrounding the wetland.
The development of that property into a water delivery system that was
later branded a forest preserve property was keenly pursued to generate tax
revenues. I talked with the engineers doing the work who promised "it will
be a better wetland than before," but I was skeptical. I know there is much
good work done in wetland mitigation, and it works. But in this case, the
pressures to channelized that outflow have resulted in a shallow, rather
birdless section of wetland in central Kane County.
And I miss the black terns.
On Thu, May 31, 2018 at 4:12 PM, Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <
> Hello Bird People,
> On our way out of Goose Pond/Lake in McHenry Co on Monday we
> encountered 3 birders going in & one of them (Keith B) did find 2
> Black Terns although we failed during the 2 hours we looked thereby
> proving Terns were still present just not for us. So today I made a
> project out of it going to 4 places were Black Terns have a history of
> The 1st place was Glacial Park where Black Terns are sometimes found
> both at the main pond & the small pond by the last parking lot. Looked
> at both places but no Black Terns. Heard 1 Yellow Headed Blackbird,
> saw Willow Flycatchers & heard an Eastern Phoebe. So I was 0 for 1 on
> Black Terns.
> So I had to make the long walk at Goose Pond/Lake Natural Area with
> all its mosquitoes & other bugs. Seemed o.k. at 1st so I didn't use
> bug spray but soon I wished I had. Using spray after being bitten is a
> little like "closing the barn door after the horse is out" but better
> late than never. After 15 min of fast walking I was at the observation
> area & right away I see a Tern like bird but it's far away & the light
> is against me. Can't see any details & then it was gone. Now I "know"
> it was a Black Tern but can't prove it. But about 15 min later it was
> back & I got a much better look. Used my scope as it never came in &
> always stayed at the far (south) end of the water. Disappeared again &
> reappeared again too. Success of a sort!
> With a little looking I found 2 COMMON GALLINUES but they were a long
> way off & it's a good thing I could make out the red bills clearly.
> Also saw plenty of YELLOW HEADED BLACKBIRDS & 10 Sandhill Cranes flew
> by with 2 of them landing. Also one of the Ruddy Ducks was still
> Anyway, now I am 1 for 2 on Black Terns.
> Third stop was Lake Catherine off Lakeview which is fairly close by.
> When we were here on Monday Bob Erickson did see 1 Black Tern which I
> never saw & today it was the same with me finding none.
> So now I'm 1 for 3 on Black Terns.
> Last stop was in Lake County at the boat launch at Turner Lake in
> Chain 'O Lakes St Pk where Andy Stewart had seen a Black Tern
> recently. Sat by the boat launch for 45 min (I was giving it 1 hour)
> but was not seeing anything but Swallows when 1 Black Tern flew into
> view briefly & was gone.
> Thank you Andy! So the final tally is 2 for 4 on Black Terns.
> Drove a lot today but the baby Prius C was in rare form giving me 65.7
> mpg so I don't feel too guilty about gas consumption. Bird-Of-The-Day
> to the hard to find Black Terns & Runners-Up to the 2 Common
> Gallinules & the FOY Dickcissels at North Branch which is near Goose
> Pond/Lake. I knew they'd be there.
> Al Stokie
> Mostly in McHenry County with one stop in Lake County
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