Sharon Hatten and I set out this morning at 5:30 AM for a full day of birding.  The highlights for us were the Painted Bunting, Blue Grosbeak, and Western Kingbird all within our first hour at Clinton Lake.  All views were so up close and personal we barely needed our binoculars.  From there we headed to south of St. Joseph to look at Horseshoe Lake and Lake Contrary.  The highlights there were a large flock of Cattle Egrets.  We were excited about this because it was the first time we had seen them in their full orange-ish plumage.  Mixed in with them were four Little Blue Herons.  Three were immature with the black and the white and one was a mature.  Later we did see another mature Little Blue Heron.  We were able to view a Common Nighthawk on a telephone wire just off 59 Highway and Route U.  Later, while we were doing our route around Lake Contrary we viewed a Grasshopper Sparrow and a Whip-poor-will on a timber fence post.  Between Squaw Creek and our daily routes throughout the day there were numerous Indigo Buntings, House Wrens, American White Pelicans, Eastern Wood Peewees, Orchard Orioles, Loggerhead Shrikes, Brown Thrashers, Dickcissels, Meadowlarks, Yellow Warblers, Great Egrets, Green Heron, Wood Ducks, Eastern Kingbirds, and many more.  We ended the day with a 20 minute view from 10 yards away, a beautiful Northern Bobwhite on an old fallen log.  He called continuously as we took it all in.  We didn’t leave until he did.  I’m sure I’m forgetting something.  I’m beat.  But the end result was 4 new life birds for me, and 7 new life birds for Sharon and a mystery duck we’ll be asking friends to identify.  Not a bad day!

 

Christine Kline

Pleasant Hill, MO ~ Cass County

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The Audubon Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
ASM Fall Meeting: September 24-26 at Camp Clover Point
http://mobirds.org/
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The Audubon Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
List archives: https://po.missouri.edu/archives/mobirds-l.html