North Star Birding Species List | August 9, 2017
August 9, 2017
Wednesday, August 9, 2017, 6:30AM – 9:30AM
Weather: sunny with ground clouds.
Location: ACES & Pitkin County Open Space, North Star Nature Preserve
The morning was spectacular with low clouds hugging the ground throughout the low, flat valley floor and vegetation laden with moisture from heavy rain during the night. Bird and wildlife activity in general was quiet until the moment the sun came over Smuggler Mountain, and then there was a burst of activity. Most bird species we observed were seen as both adults and juveniles, in family flocks or larger groups. Highlights were foraging hummingbirds at paintbrush flowers, a red-tailed hawk that gave a scream before flying up valley, and a family of western tanagers. MacGillivray’s warblers were observed in two areas, and a bright male Wilson’s warbler was probably with a family group that stayed obscured among the willows. The sun burned off the low clouds, transforming the landscape from Alasksa-like heavy, moisture-laden, cold air and mist back to our usual sunny, warm Colorado atmosphere. It was remarkable to see how the birds responded to these conditions, as well as having the opportunity to explore the south side of the river in this ‘wildlife only’ part of North Star Nature Preserve. We experienced this high-quality and very important bird habitat, coming away with a deeper appreciation for this special place. Join us next Tuesday for more excellent birding at Rock Bottom Ranch!
~ Rebecca Weiss, ACES Bird Guide
Photo by Dale Armstrong