At 3:58 am today (17 Jan) I left for a dawn arrival to see a Say's Phoebe that was reported yesterday 16th by Charley, Greg, Debbie and Steve and originally found Monday 15th by David Blevins. It seemed like it was staying around so I took the chance as well as lined up some other good birds to try for. It took about 45 minutes to find the Say's Phoebe down by the lake behind the green house. It had flown back up to a tree near the house and was wagging its tail in the mist and rain. Then on to Arcola for a try to find David B.'s Prairie Falcon from 7 Jan. After I almost gave up it flew overhead at the west edge of Arcola, Dade Co, once with a bird in talon and the second overhead on the way back to the field to catch something else.
Other new birds for the year were Am. White Pelican, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and common loon at Stockton Lake; and Brewer's Blackbirds (CR 601 Cedar County) and a young Vesper Sparrow (on SW 1151 just south of MO 82) at Wah'Kon-Tah Prairie, St Clair Co.
It was misty and sprinkling most of the day, overcast and no sun, but the birding was great.