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We've had some pretty serious rain around Kansas City. I gather it has raised the level of Sunshine Lake and created a puddle or two at Cooley Lake. Has it had any effect on Little Bean Lake, Sugar Lake and  the lakes around St. Joseph? Did it go far enough north to affect Big Lake and Squaw Creek?

BTW, there are conflicting hypotheses about the effect of new rains re-covering exposed mudflats. Normally, shallow sheet water is especially good for wading shore birds like Godwits, Dowitchers, Stilts, etc. But one hypothesis has it that when a mudflat is re-covered with water after having dried out for a long time, the organisms that these birds feed on will have died, and their eggs will need some time to hatch and grow before such sheet water will again hold wading shorebirds. Another point of view holds that, since wading shorebirds often congretate in  large puddles on bare fields, there must be something for the birds to eat almost immediately in every new puddle.

I'm guessing that portions of mudflat on our dried-out oxbows that are re-covered soon after they have dried out will immediately have food for waders. The invertebrates they feed on will just have burrowed down when the mudflat dried out, but will still be living and will reappear quickly once it is covered again. Flats that have been dry for long periods may take longer to be productive.

Anyway, I'm thinking of going north to look for shorebirds. Let me know if it is likely to be worthwhile, or if I should put it off for a week or two.

Thanks.

Bob Fisher
Independence, Missouri
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