I guess it is fitting that 2008 should go out with one last round of flooding in the Grand River Basin!  I think this is # 15 for the year, or is it 16?? I drove around the Fountain Grove CA  - Swan Lake NWR areas couple of days ago days and found lots of high water with several roads submerged again. Glad the Swan Lake CBC is not until Sat. so there will be time for the water to go down some. Some of the roads will be very muddy though if they are not frozen then.
  The good news is more Waterfowl and Bald Eagles are back since there is some open water again now. Most of them left after the Big Freeze Up earlier in the Month. Saw a good number of Ring-billed Gulls at Swan Lake which is unsual for there this time of year. Several Great Blue Herons have stuck it out so far and had a small flock of Greater White-fronted Geese flyover. Saw two Red-shouldered Hawks on the refuge and a Rough-legged Hawk on the way home. Saw couple of Loggerhead Shrikes, but no Northern this time. Hopefully we will find some of those for the count.
Happy New Year!
 Steve Kinder
Chillicothe, Livingston Co.
The Audubon Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
ASM Website: http://mobirds.org/