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This morning a had decision to make. Should I go to Farley Sod Farm and look
for the Buff-breasted Sandpiper or go to Squaw Creek? I decided to go to Squaw
Creek and stop by Nodaway Valley CA on the way up. When I got to Nodaway
Valley it was pretty quiet. Then I did see 20 Wood Ducks fly out of the
vegetation. (This is on the west side of the area, off Highway B.) I drove east to the
Nodaway River, turned around and headed back west. A bird fluttered down beside
the road ahead of me which was showing an awful lot of white on the
under-wings. When I got my binocs on it I discovered it was a BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER,
great! Looking over in the plowed strip next to the water on the south side of
the road I discovered four more Buff-breasted Sandpipers. (Glad I came here
and did not go to Farley!). Continuing west to exit the area I found five
Vesper Sparrows in the road side vegetation.

Now it was time to head for Squaw Creek. I got most of the stuff I was
expecting. Birds of note: Great Blue Heron (of course), Little Blue Heron
(immature), Green Heron, Snowy Egret, Great Egret, Yellow-headed Blackbirds (20) and one
immature Bald Eagle. The only ducks I saw were Blue-winged Teal, Wood Ducks
and a couple of Mallards in eclipse plumage. The shorebirds in the north east
moist soil unit were: Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs, Stilt, Pectoral, Solitary,
Spotted, Least Sandpipers and Killdeer. (Oddly enough, I did not see a single
Killdeer at Nodaway Valley!) Also, as I pulled up this shorebird area, two
Sandhill Cranes flew overhead to the east part of the refuge and disappeared.

Larry Lade
Saint Joseph, Buchanan County

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