Saturday, January 5, 2008

Trip to Valmont Reservoir complex

After dropping Tim off at the Denver Airport this afternoon, I got back to Boulder and hopped on my bike. I headed up the bike path to Boulder Creek. There are a few little ponds where the path near my house intersects the S Boulder Creek path near Arapaho and the Foothills Parkway. There is still some open water here, and there were 8 COMMON GOLDENEYE, 10 GADWALL, 2 RING-NECKED DUCK (#30) and 2 LESSER SCAUP hanging out. I watched as one female Goldeneye rode low in the water with her head stretched out in front of her in a display posture. She pursued another female and even dove under water and went after the other female's feet and tail from under the surface. While looking through a group of Canada Geese at the ball fields off Stanzio Dr, I spotted a PRAIRIE FALCON (pic of a bird caught at the Goshute Mtn Hawkwatch, Fall 2006) flying by overhead. I then rode over to Legion Park which is a great place to scope the Valmont Reservoir complex. This complex has three reservoirs, Valmont, Hillcrest and Leggett. Valmont is now about 97% frozen and it had a couple hundred gulls roosting on the ice, including 5 HERRING and 2 CALIFORNIA GULLS. A TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE was calling and singing in the pine trees. Water birds included AMERICAN COOT, PIED-BILLED and WESTERN GREBES, NORTHERN SHOVELER, HOODED, RED-BREASTED and COMMON MERGANSERS, 1 CANVASBACK, Mallards, Gadwall and American Wigeon. Two BALD EAGLES (1 1st year, 1 3rd year) were out on the edge of the ice on Valmont as well. I heard a single Bohemian Waxwing fly over. Before it got dark, I got over to the Bobolink Trail and caught up with a BELTED KINGFISHER and AMERICAN TREE SPARROWS. The local Great Horned was a no show this evening. A healthy 19 new year BGBY birds! While riding to work yesterday morning, I picked up a single EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVE putting my total at 47.

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