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Hearing about the Gulls at Long Branch earlier this week as well as the
Trumpeter Swan at Eagle Bluffs, I decided to devote the day driving to
different duck-watching destinations.  Turns out, I should have driven
farther south (or east).  99% of Eagle Bluffs was frozen over again and 100%
of Long Branch was.  

At Eagle Bluffs, the eagles were out in force as Anne said earlier.  I saw 1
adult and 3 immatures in a tree as well as 1 adult flying.  The American
Tree Sparrows are still chilling in the soybean field and a half-dozen
horned larks were chattering across the road.  Unlike the open water, the
feeders were abuzz with activity.  In less than 30 minutes, sighted or heard
downy, hairy, red-headed, red-bellied, and pileated woodpeckers, white- and
red-breasted nuthatch, brown creeper, pine siskins, cardinals, goldfinches,
white-throated and house sparrows, and spotted a great blue heron flying
through the trees in the distance.  No purple finches or even house finches,
which I really expected to see given the weather.  Overall, still got 30
species, but a very slow day until the feeder frenzy to round out my trip.

Long Branch was completely frozen over with no gulls or waterfowl anywhere
to be seen.  I drove the length of the park up to Atlanta CA still seeing
nothing.  At Atlanta, the "highlight" was a group of 50+ American Crows and
a pair of Red-Tailed Hawks.  Another interesting sight was a pair of humans
firing what looked to be an automatic rifle at the shooting range.  Not sure
if that is what it was, but they packed up pretty quick after I started
driving around the area.  One final sighting was a half-dozen Eastern
Bluebirds.  I was hoping to see some Longspurs or perhaps a rogue Snow
Bunting down for the cold we had this week, but no luck.

Hope everyone's staying warm!

-Chase Darr
Columbia, MO

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