Morning Birding at Rock Bottom Ranch 9/6/22

ACES Staff

September 6, 2022

Morning Birding at Rock Bottom Ranch 9/6/22

Tuesday, September 6, 2022, 7:30am-10:30am
Weather: Sunny & hot
Location: Rock Bottom Ranch, CO


Migration and fall molting and foraging behaviors were today’s themes. We saw migrating Wilson’s warblers, white-crowned sparrows, and Brewer’s sparrows that were underway with their migration. These birds nest in very different elevations and habitats compared to where we found them today, indicating that these individuals are on the move, heading south toward their wintering ranges. We also saw some very scruffy birds that were molting: a song sparrow with no tail, starlings with white-tipped body feathers, crows with neck feathers missing, and red-winged blackbirds that were growing in their buffy-edged, fresh plumage that gives them a scaly appearance. We also observed cedar waxwings hawking insects the same way that flycatchers do, and robins eating fruits to take advantage of seasonally available foods. Highlights included a Wilson’s snipe that flushed near us, an osprey, and an active kingfisher. Fall would not be complete without some mystery birds, and today we had a mystery sparrow in great light for long, clear observations. As a group, we flipped through the sparrow pages in the Sibley guide and considered other sparrow-like species, and this bird remained unidentified! Join us for more exciting fall birding this Thursday at North Star Nature Preserve.

Species List: 

Canada Goose
Rock Pigeon
Eurasian Collared-Dove
Broad-tailed Hummingbird
Wilson’s Snipe
Belted Kingfisher
Steller’s Jay
Woodhouse’s Scrub-Jay
Black-billed Magpie
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
White-breasted Nuthatch
American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
Evening Grosbeak
American Goldfinch
Spotted Towhee
Song Sparrow
Brewer’s Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow
Red-winged Blackbird
Yellow Warbler
Wilson’s Warbler

~ Rebecca Weiss, ACES Bird Guide

Featured photo: Wilson’s snipe

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