Fall Bird Migration: Jaffee Park with Pitkin OST 9/15/22
September 15, 2022
Thursday, September 15, 2022, 7:30am-10:30am
Weather: Raining, then partly sunny
Location: Jaffee Park, Woody Creek, CO
With the weather serving up a low cloud ceiling and steady rain, we began the morning with a sense of intrepidness. Fortunately the rain subsided and we enjoyed sunshine for the latter half of the outing, along with pockets of bird activity. Our first birds were two red-tailed hawks perched in a snag over the river where they were preening and shaking their wet plumage out. Dippers were active along the entire reach of the river where we hiked. It was interesting to watch them forage, interact, and perch in the lowest boughs of a spruce over the river. We noted juvenile plumage for several of these birds. A kingfisher flew up and down the river, using it as a highway. Over the shale bluffs, we saw ravens soaring against the blue sky. A flock of swallows flew through our binocular views, showing up in the background as they foraged so high that they were not possible to see with the naked eye. This was an exciting observation, clearly a migrating flock feeding as they pass over this area. Chickadees and nuthatches were active in the riparian forest, wood-pewees hawked insects from treetops, and a single plumbeous vireo foraged among cottonwood foliage. Glad that we braved the weather, we made the most of the birds that were present and enjoyed the lower gorge’s dramatic geology. Join us next Thursday for more fall migration birding at the Marolt Open Space!
Western wood pewee
~ Rebecca Weiss, ACES Bird Guide