Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Monday, 14th May 2012
We spent the whole day birding in Weld and Larimer Counties, driving east as far as Crow Valley campground.  Our first stop was at a lake on the west side of WCR 23 south of CO 14 where Nancy wanted to try some new settings on her camera for photographing the Yellow-headed Blackbirds.  There were at least 35 of them singing their raspy songs from the tops of the reeds.

There were also a pair of Western Grebes and a Pair of Clark's Grebes swimming out on the lake, which made for some good comparisons.

A Virginia Rail called repeatedly from the marsh in front of us but would not show himself even when I used playback.  His rattle was accompanied by the equally rattly murmur of a few American Coots.

Crow Valley was a disappointment, as most birders are finding this year, probably because everything is so dry.  We didn't see a single warbler.  We did see a Veery and a couple of pairs of Brown Thrashers, and Western Kingbirds were chasing each other all over the campground.  

On the way back, we decided to go south the WCR 74 and head east toward Fort Collins.  Along the way, we saw a dozen ibis at the Baldridge neighborhood just east of Severance.  We pulled in for Nancy to photograph them.  I got out the scope and I quickly realized that one of the ibis was different from the others.  Consulting the bird book, I realized it had all the field marks of a Glossy Ibis.  Nancy zeroed in on it and got some good photos, including one that shows both a White-faced Ibis and the more rare Glossy Ibis side by side, showing clearly the differences between the two.  Here are two photos:
                 Glossy Ibis                                                                          White-faced Ibis                                                             

Glossy Ibis