A dozen birders enjoyed a productive Saturday morning in St. Charles County starting on the Blue Grosbeak trail before 0600 hours.  We were serenaded on most of that trail by Catbirds, Indigo Buntings, Bobwhites, Thrashers and Common Yellowthroats.  At the top of the first rise we spent some time looking and listening in vain for  special sparrows.  If you count Chipping, Field and Song Sparrows as special we did good, in not, well you know.  A brief appearance by a flying Yellow-billed Cuckoo gave hopes we could get the whole group on it, but as is the Cuckoo’s way it vanished in a tree.

 

Farther up the trail we did score a singing Blue Grosbeak and had several Bell’s Vireos, so we got some goods birds.  A few other birds in the area were Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Warbling Vireo, Yellow Warbler, Eastern Kingbirds, Belted Kingfishers, Northern Parula, Orchard and Baltimore Orioles, Tree, Barn and Northern Rough-winged Swallows.

 

Pat Lueders led the group to Darst Bottom for nesting Scissor-tailed Flycatchers and Lark Sparrows.  We got great looks at three of the former, distant looks at two of the latter.

 

About 10AM we arrived at Lost Valley Trail and had Kentucky Warbler and Louisiana Waterthrush.  Acadian Flycatchers and Yellow-throated Vireos were singing away.  Not far in we heard and a few saw a Worm-eating Warbler.  The Red-shouldered Hawk nest was empty.  At the trail intersection I found an occupied American Redstart nest.  At Bob Bailey’s suggestion at the intersection we went straight rather than turning left as was our custom.  Where the new mountain biking trail goes off to the left we found a female RB Grosbeak feeding a chick, heard Cerulean Warblers and saw a Yellow-throated Warbler and saw another Worm-eating Warbler. 

 

Heading out a faint Broad-winged Hawk was heard.  As we walked into the parking lot we saw a soaring Mississippi Kite, a fine way to finish the walk.  The rain started as I exited that parking lot.

 

Thank you Mike T, Bernie F, Pat L and Dick P for helping lead.  Thank you Bernie for also toting your scope.  Thank you Mike T for your bird list since I forgot my recorder.

 

Total species count was 79.

 

Mike Grant

Chesterfield, MO

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