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Gail and I did a bit of wandering around Pike and Lincoln Counties Saturday afternoon. The open water below the Clarksville Lock and Dam was in stark contrast to the ice-covered Mississippi above it. We counted 37 Bald Eagles taking advantage of the easy fishing, and 510 Common Mergansers.
Clarence Cannon NWR was exceptionally quiet. All of the pools were frozen, but we had nice looks at Northern Harriers and American Tree Sparrows, and a fleeting glimpse of a coyote trotting across the snowy marsh.
BK Leach CA was our final stop and it certainly didn't disappoint. We really enjoyed watching a flock of 200 or so Lapland Longspurs in the snowy field west of Marre Road. We had nine species of Sparrow, including a beautiful male Eastern Towhee doing the two-step in the leaf debris. A Rough-legged Hawk that Gail had spotted a few days earlier was still working the field northeast of the old headquarters. And it's hard to beat Short-eared Owls flying low over Norton Woods Road as the setting sun fills the sky with a warm pink glow.
Enjoy every bird-
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