Date: 6/22/20 8:05 pm
From: Brandon Caswell <brandon.caswell83...>
Subject: [ia-bird] Hancock, Winnebago, Kossuth auto tour 4/22, Polk Co. 4/21
Hi birders,

Yesterday I hit several spots in Polk Co., target birding
(county/year/state listing). Perhaps one of the best days of this type of
birding I’ve ever had!

Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt along NE 118th Ave: a pair of Yellow-breasted
Chats were #200 for Polk Co., along with several other county birds; chats
were continuing at (41.7767208, -93.4034067); this road was superb birding

Sandpiper RA: a single Fish Crow was on beach near Ring-billed Gulls around
7am; audio and photos obtained for state bird #334

Red Feather Prairie: could hear a Henslow’s Sparrow from the parking lot

Karl Chevrolet, Ankeny: Western Kingbird immediately flew to me and perched
on a sign; they are closed on Sundays so this is probably the best day to
go

WDM: Mississippi Kites buzzed around my vehicle right at the west entrance
of Fairmeadows Elementary, my alma mater 3rd-6th grade...a fun, reminiscing
drive throughout WDM after birding

Today, before noon I made a trip around NC Iowa from about 11:30a-5:00p,
checking many spots. It was overcast most of the time and temps in the low
70’s, excellent slough birding conditions. It seemed pretty remarkable, but
I had four different pairs of Trumpeter Swans with cygnets that were all
roughly the same size/age.

Forest City settling ponds: nothing to note

Crystal Hill WMA: a single Trumpeter with three cygnets

Crystal Lake: nothing to note

Myre Slough: at least a dozen Yellow-headed Blackbirds on territory; only
two Black Terns seen, which according to David Shealer this tern nesting
colony has pretty much collapsed, sad too because habitat looked great and
was widespread

Maynard Reece WPA: seven species of “blackbirds”; Trumpeter pair with six
cygnets

Union Slough NWR: Trumpeter pair with five cygnets; I also saw another
likely pair, but no young

330th St/Birch Ave (east of Titonka): Upland Sandpiper

Eagle Flats WMA/Warren E. Fox WMA: most Bobolinks I’ve ever seen, I stopped
counting at 30, but there were more; several times I saw groups of 4-5
males chasing females; Trumpeter Swan pair with two cygnets; another note
to locals, they have done a water drawdown here and the shorebird habitat
is really nice near the intersection of 270th St/Lake Ave

Eagle Lake WMA: although I didn’t spend a lot of time here I saw a single
Black Tern, which was disappointing; only heard one Pied-billed Grebe; the
infamous nesting grebe lake disappointed once again

Pilot Knob SP tomorrow morning...

Good birding,
Brandon Caswell
Marion

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