Date: 10/21/18 7:27 pm
From: David T√łnnessen <davidtonnessenx...>
Subject: [cobirds] Kiowa County, 10/20
Evening folks,

Apologies for a late posting, but yesterday David Dowell and I birded Kiowa
county's larger reservoirs and discovered much activity. Starting pre-dawn
at Neenoshe Reservoir, we amassed large numbers of waterfowl of good
diversity from the south peninsula. Most notable waterbirds here proved to
be 2 *Common Loons* and 11 *White-winged Scoters* that Dowell spotted
amongst a raft of Aythya ducks, the largest single group of this species
that either of us had encountered in Colorado. Shorebirds were present in
small numbers at the main reservoir, and we found much larger numbers at
the disjunct southeast pond. An apparent *Short-billed Dowitcher* called
its high 3-note "tu-tu-tu" around dawn at the south peninsula of the main
reservoir, and other shorebirds present included *Greater* and *Lesser
Yellowlegs*, *Long-billed Dowitchers* in the hundreds, over a hundred *Stilt
Sandpipers*, 2 very late *Wilson's Phalaropes*, *Least Sandpipers*, *Pectoral
Sandpipers* and a *Baird's Sandpiper*. However, the highlight of our visit
to this reservoir was surely the sheer numbers of sparrows present; highly
vocal *White-crowned Sparrows* had invaded almost every patch of brush
between the peninsula and the southwest parking lot, and it would not
surprise me if a few thousand were present around this body of water total.
Mixed in we found multitudes of *Lincon's* and *Song Sparrows*, plus 3 *Swamp
Sparrows*, 9 *White-throated Sparrows*, and 6 *Harris's Sparrows*, and 2 *Field
Sparrows* the most of any of these species I have personally ever
encountered at once in the state. Non-sparrows of note while in the woods
and brush included fly-by *Eastern* and *Mountain Bluebirds*, a *Winter
Wren*, a *Rock Wren*, *Orange-crowned*, *Myrtle* and *Audubon's Warblers*,
and a beautiful iridescent *Rusty Blackbird*. Small groups of *Snow Geese*
including a single *Ross's* were flying over calling throughout, as were
longspurs composed mainly of *Chestnut-collared* but also a few *McCown's*
and a *Lapland *or two. They forage in the post-agricultural fields to the
south heavily.

We birded Neegronda and the two Queens Reservoirs briefly, and found
nothing quite as extraordinary. A *Lesser Black-backed Gull* was on Upper
Queens, but to be fair, there is always a Lesser Black-backed Gull at Upper
Queens no matter the season (or so it seems).

Because time was allowing, Dave Dowell and I also drove out to Adobe Creek
Reservoir and found some interesting presence there. An extremely late *Piping
Plover* (eBird says latest by a month) and *Snowy Plover *stood together
indolently on the east side of the res, just barely in Kiowa County. A *Red-throated
Loon* and 4 *Red-breasted Mergansers *were also notable birds on the Kiowa
County side. South of here, in the Bent County portion of the reservoir, 3 *Black-bellied
Plovers* and a *Sanderling* among Baird's Sandpipers added to the list of
slightly peculiars.

Good Fork-tailed Flycatcher-chasing,
David Tonnessen
Colorado Springs, CO

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