Are the tamarisks all dead or just individual trees?
If they are all dead in large groups along the river, then it is the beetle. A predatory beetle was brought in to eliminate the Tamarisks. It was tested for more than 10 years to see if it was going to be an eco-disaster. Scientists figured it would do a mile or 2 in a year. Once the tammies in an area are dead, the beetle dies. So no eco problems and the plan was put into place.
So the scientists calculations were it would take dozens of years to clear up the Colorado River system. The beetle was first released in CO and by the second year it was in the Grand Canyon. It kills large sections of tammies. Of course, when dealing with nature, nothing went as planned. Too successful.
The reason why the tammies are considered bad is, some estimates put an additional 50% of the water in the CO river system in the tammies alone. No native plants can compete with them. Problem is tammies can grow overnight and willows take a decade to recover. So there are a lot of treeless sections of rivers in the CO river system.
That is also why if you are a boater you have been told not to go some places because they are trying to re-introduce the willows.
From: <cobirds...> <cobirds...> On Behalf Of pandion2006 Sent: Monday, September 14, 2020 6:07 PM To: <coloradobirder...>; Colorado Birds <cobirds...> Subject: RE: [cobirds] Weekend Birding/Weld
We're actually camping at Crow Valley and walked as far north and west as we could towards those trees. There's a fenceline with no apparent gap or gate so we didn't cross over.
Speaking of the fields north of the campground... it looks like there's a campaign to eradicate Russian olive. Anyone know who's behind that?
at Crow Valley CG
Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S7 that does NOT catch fire.
Lone Tree Creek crossing at Weld CR 110 (just west of Hwy 85 in Nunn) had a good smattering of birds:
* Wilson's Warbler * Orange-crowned Warbler * McGillvray's Warbler * Gray Catbird * Green-tailed Towhee * Brown Thrasher * Lapland Longspur (2) flyover and seen briefing on ground with Horned Lark * American Goldfinch * Song Sparrow * Yellow-beasted Chat * Brewer's Sparrow * White-crowned Sparrow * Mourning Dove * American Kestrel * Eurasian-collared Dove * Lark Sparrow
Weld CR 124 pond-few miles west of Hwy 77 hosted ducks, geese, Prairie Falcon, Swainson's Hawk, Golden Eagle, Greater Yellowlegs, Baird's and Least Sandpiper.
Galeton Ponds heating up. Burrowing Owl still lingering about one mile east of Weld CR 74/61 (ponds). Franklin's Gull (34), Long-biled Dowitcher (12), Stilt Sandpiper (5), Black Tern (8), Forster's Tern 91), Greater Yellowlegs and Wilson's Phalarope.
Crow Valley Campground I got 37 species, highlights include Red-headed Woodpecker, Red-naped Sapsucker (2), Laplong Longspur flyover NE corner, Red-breasted Nuthatch, empids, Gray Catbird, Swainson's Thrush, MacGillvray's Warbler, and Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Others reported a vireo species, three Great Horned Owl.
Crow Valley question: Has anyone ventured out to the north-south mature tree lines at very western edge of farm property out the (west) back gate? I have not and wondered about how close you can get to them or in them? Or if worth the hike out to them? I've been out on the farm property just never walked that far west.