Smithville Lake (Clay County, MO) held an interesting mix of birds this evening. With all the boat avtivity at the marinas, many birds could be found on the newly/partially constructed rock "jetties" at Woodhenge and Little Platte Park. Short walks and a bit of stealth enabled me to get good looks at:
Cattle Egret-8(looking utterly bizarre on a rocky jetty near the other terns and gulls)
Ring-Billed Gull-65 (showing the incredible variation of first-cycle birds)
Bonaparte's Gull-2
Franklin's Gull-3
Caspian Tern-4
Common Tern-3(all 3 Tern, sp. close enough for scope comparison; too cool!)
Forsters Tern-8
"Sterna" Tern, sp-55(large flock flew by the woodhenge jetty and continued north)
American Avocet-4
Willet-18
RUDDY TURNSTONE-2(new Smithville Lake bird for me)
SANDERLING-1(another first for me at Smithville)
While driving from the Little Platte Recreation Area to the north end of the dam, I saw a beautiful male Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher hawking insects on Hwy. F near the Harborview subdivision.
From the north end of the dam in the evening light:
Common Loon-2(looked to be in full alternate plumage; both birds vocalizing frequently!)
Eared Grebe-1
12 species of waterfowl scattered about the main body of the lake at sunset.
Had my first Orchard Orioles at the Little Platte Park areas. Also 8 sparrow sp., including Harris (1), White-Crowned (8), White-Throated (2), Clay-Colored (many), and Vesper (1).
Good Birding!,
Doug Willis
Liberty, MO
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