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Larry Lade and I found a very early Merlin today at Mud Lake South of St. Joe. Easterla and Robbins has Aug. 31st as earliest date. Looked to be the female Praire race - very pale.
We birded Squaw Creek this P.M. in the extreme heat - not too much activity but did see the two adult Sandhill cranes feeding in NE part of refuge - near pool North of Cattail Pool. There were 4 adult Little Blue Herons there also and a few Great Egrets. We saw about 40 young Pied-billed Grebes and about a dozen Young Am Coots at South end of the refuge. The Moorhens and Least Bitterns must have been staying down in the shade as we didn't see any. We didn't find any shorebirds there either - there were a few at Lake Contrary. Heard a couple Sedge Wrens on the refuge and also south of Contrary.

 Later, Steve


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