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Yesterday I found Prairie Falcon on Hammy Road south of town and a Merlin on a fence post at Muskrat Lake (Crockett Road).
   
  Today the Prairie Falcon was sitting on a utility pole to the south of Muskrat Lake off of Crockett Road. I was able to watch it for about five minutes before it took off north by northwest. I imagine it settled in somewhere in the Lake Contrary area.
   
  I did NOT see any Lapland Longspurs or Snow Buntings today, although I did see (and scan through) about 200 Horned Larks. I guess the longspurs and buntings like blizzard condition and when the sun shines, they leave! ;-)
   
  A small area of Lake Contrary was being kept free from ice by a large contingent of Snow Geese and Canada Geese. Taking advantage of the open water were: Greater White-fronted Geese, Common Goldeneyes, Lesser Scaup, Green-winged Teal, Ruddy Ducks, Mallards, Ring-necked Ducks, Gadwall, one drake Redhead and American Coots. Over on the Missouri River, next to Lake Contrary were thirteen Common Mergansers.
   
  I counted fifteen Bald Eagles in the area.
   
  As I was leaving the area around Muskrat Lake, three Trumpeter Swan rose up from somewhere in the ice-over lake area and flew towards the bluffs and then south. All three looked like they had red neck collars.


Larry Lade
Saint Joseph, MO
Buchanan County
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