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I know, it's pouring down rain, but when I woke up at 5:30 this morning, I
had a theory: if it's been raining most of the night, and if it lets up, the
birds are going to be very hungry for breakfast!  So I drove to St. Charles
CO for the third time.  I got there at 7:30; it was still raining and there
were no birds around the yard, so I drove around for 10 minutes or so.  When
I went back to my favorite parking spot, the inca dove was there feeding all
by itself.  It stayed for a few minutes as other birds joined in the meal,
then they all flew.  I saw it once more before 8.  A little after 8, the
homeowner came out to throw around more seed.  I gave him a bag of seed and
thanked him for his hospitality.  The new supply of seed on the ground
brought in maybe 200 birds, several different species.

Two interesting things: I saw a leucistic bird, the size and shape of a
brown-headed cowbird; smudgy gray on head, breast and belly, very pale,
almost white on tail and distal half of wings.  I've spent almost 5 hours at
that place in the last week and that was the first time I saw that bird.

The other thing.....I was listening to my new Birding By Ear CD in the car;
one of the sections covers buteos.  It also gives examples of blue jays
mimicing calls of broadwinged or red-tailed hawks.  When there were lots of
birds on the concrete pad, I heard a hawk call and all the birds
flew...except for 2 blue jays who were sitting on the fence and promptly
rushed down to the feeding area, which they then had all to themselves.  I
never did see a hawk, and the other birds returned soon thereafter.

Oh well, another exciting birding adventure!

Susan Eaton
Kirkwood, St. Louis CO., MO
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