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Headed for Columbia Bottom hoping the Upland Sandpipers had spent the  night, 
but could not find them.  Disappointment disappeared when I checked  out a 
bird atop a 3-foot bush at the first big left curve after the  entrance.  My ID 
was quickly confirmed when he started singing his  Grasshopper buzzy song.  
Next personal FOY birds were two Cattle Egrets in  high breeding plumage near 
the tiny pond just as you turn left to go to the  Bottom Confluence.  The new 
visitor center is open, but not on Monday and  Tuesday.
 
On to Riverlands where there was a small cluster of shorebirds in the water  
on the left of the road leading down to the dam.  My personal FOY Spotted  
Sandpiper along with a Solitary, Pectorals, Yellowlegs, possible Bairds that  
kept hiding behind grasses blowing in the gale.
In Ellis Bay scoped two personal FOY Caspian Terns that were sharing the  
island spit with some Ring-billed Gulls.  On the way out of REDA finally  got 
countable looks at the skittish Sora in the Riverlands Way Gate ditch  (reported 
by others including Mark Mittelman this 
year).  He/she kept darting back into the grass when a Kildeer would  land 
nearby.  That made 5 for the day.
 
When I pulled off to check the Bald Eagle nest on 143, two fuzzy gray  
eaglets were flapping their wings to the delight of the passengers in several  cars 
on each side of the road.  When I arrived home, there were several  familiar 
faces on the 6:00 news on KSDK commenting on the phenomenon.
 
Jackie Chain
St Louis County
 
 
 
 

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