Lake Carl Blackwell birding – 11/5/11

American Crow in flight over Lake Carl Blackwell

I wandered around on my favorite local haunts on a lovely morning a couple of weeks ago: Lake Carl Blackwell. The ongoing drought here has left water levels lower than I’ve seen them in 8 years of exploring this place. In particular, a secluded pond that is a perennial refuge for dabbling ducks was dry – reduced to a couple of muddy puddles. The remaining grounds (fields and forest) were delightfully birdy, despite high winds. Here’s a trip report including some notable observations.

I started out noticing mammals – three rather tame deer and one coyote greeted me as I drove north from over the causeway.

Canada Goose 22
Gadwall 10
American Wigeon 4
Mallard 12
Northern Shoveler 9
Redhead 30
Ring-necked Duck 6
Northern Bobwhite 11 1 covey flushed
Pied-billed Grebe 2
Double-crested Cormorant 21
American White Pelican 2
Great Blue Heron 2

Franklin's Gull

Ring-billed Gull

It's always a treat to see American White Pelicans on the wing.

Red-tailed Hawk 1 chased by a Merlin
Merlin 1 chased Red-tailed Hawk

Yes, that was a surprise and pretty neat to see. That little merlin really had the redtail’s number!

American Coot 46
Killdeer 13
Bonaparte’s Gull 13
Franklin’s Gull 6
Ring-billed Gull 24
Downy Woodpecker 1
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker 2 did not see to confirm yellow vs red-shafted
Blue Jay 3
American Crow 10
Carolina Chickadee 4
Eastern Bluebird 9
American Robin 4
Yellow-rumped Warbler 8
Harris’s Sparrow 1 first of season
White-crowned Sparrow 3 first of the season for me; Z. l. leucophrys from what I could tell.

I still find the immature plumage of White-crowned Sparrow to be subtly beautiful:

Dark-eyed Junco 22
Eastern Meadowlark 1
House Finch 2
American Goldfinch 3
House Sparrow 4

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (

On my walk out, I encountered this deer skull in the grass.

This entry was posted in animal behavior, birding, birds/nature, environment, Franklin's Gull, migrants, wildlife. Bookmark the permalink.

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