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The Swainson's Hawk that nest on the west side of Springfield last year lost its tree to development over the winter.  The good news is a pair has just about completed the construction of a new nest in a tree line in the next field south of where they nested last year.

Did a run around yesterday on the Spot and Split route that is being offered as an ASM field trip next week.  On the way to Fellow's Lake we stopped by the east side Swainson's Hawk and it was perched next to the nest.  Then on to Fellow's Lake where the highlights were a Barred and Great Horned Owl at Fellow's Lake and several Yellow-rumped Warblers, Ruby-Crowned Kinglets, and a Pied-billed Grebe as well as a nesting Red-tailed Hawk.  Our local Greater Ozarks Audubon group running the Fellow's Lake Bluebird trail also saw a Horned Grebe and Common Loon. At McCraw's Ford on the James River we viewed the Yellow-throated Warbler and the N Parula.  We then visited the nesting Cooper's Hawk and the nesting Yellow-crowned Night Herons.  At Bois D'Arc Conservation Area we had hoped to see a Barn Owl but we did not, and the barn it has been roosting in has had a chunk of the metal roof blown off too.  There is a nesting box in the barn so we do not know if the owl was using the box or if it has left the area.  There is an active Great-horned Owl nest in a tree line very near the barn and the nest has three young owl chicks about ready to fledge.  Actually, one has fledged, it was on a limb below the nest.  So now there is double concern for the Barn Owl, it may already have been Great Honed Owl breakfast.

Today I did a walk around at the Dickerson Park Zoo, yet another planned ASM field trip.  This is a new location for us to bird.  The zoo is modern and is located in a classic Ozark ravine and hills location.  It has a lot of diverse birding conditions with running water.  I viewed Yellow-rumped Warbler and Ruby-crowned Kinglet along with Yellow -bellied Sapsucker, Kingfisher, Brown Thrasher and many of the regulars including numerous Carolina Wrens.  There is also a section we bird that is on the zoo property but outside of the exotic area and runs along the creek that flows through the zoon grounds.  It is great to be on the zoo grounds before it is open and busy with people as we will experience on the Sunday this field trip is scheduled.  The other neat part is the comfortable toilet facilities never very far away.

Our local group has a field trip planned for Greer's Spring this weekend, so we will let everyone know about what success we do or do not have at that location.

This weekend weather looks great as we seem to be on a beautiful weekend and rain during the week cycle.  Let's hope it holds on for at least one more cycle.  The real challenge we are facing now are leaves.  The leaves are out way early, with many in and near town virtually leaved out.  It is beautiful right now and we are ready for the birds but the leaves are going to make us work for our pleasure, and ,oh yes, our sore necks.

Charley
Greene County
Greater Ozarks Audubon
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