Fifteen of us had a great outing at Hudson Gardens this past Saturday. The weather was not too hot and we recorded 35 species of birds (see list below).
Things were hopping from the outset. Before I could even introduce myself we had a juvenile Cooper’s Hawk calling from a nearby tree, and a female Wood Duck with five youngsters in tow right below the Cooper’s.
Another highlight as the morning progressed included either a single American White Pelican cruising by periodically, or a few different individuals doing the same. We also had great looks at the “golden slippers” of a very cooperative Snowy Egret. Photo from http://www.bioexpedition.com
We saw four species of swallows, including nesting Tree Swallows in a box at the south end of the wetland area. I was surprised to not see more Cliff Swallows as in the past they have nested in large numbers (100+) under the Bowles Ave. bridge over the South Platte. I guess their young have already fledged and moved on, but it seems a bit early to me.
Perhaps the most interesting observation was of a pair of Red-tailed Hawks that were hanging out side-by-side for much of the morning. One was a typical light-morph western Red-tail – the one we see the most frequently, but the other one was a darker intermediate-morph with a gorgeous, rich rufous (rusty red-brown) breast – photo courtesy of Bill Schmoker.
Finally, the last bird of the morning was the most colorful – a male Bullock’s Oriole.
It was a wonderful morning! Hope to see you soon on another Front Range Birding Company outing.
Hudson Gardens, Front Range Birding Company
Jun 25, 2016
Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) 13
Wood Duck (Aix sponsa) 1 1 female with 5 youngsters
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) 23 Several females with young
Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus) 8
American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) 1
Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) 1
Cooper’s Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) 1
Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) 2
Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus) 2
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) (Columba livia (Feral Pigeon)) 3
Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) 4
Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) 9
Broad-tailed Hummingbird (Selasphorus platycercus) 4
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon) 1
Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens) 3
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) 8
Western Wood-Pewee (Contopus sordidulus) 4
Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis) 1
Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) 2
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica) 5
Cliff Swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) 7
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) 3
Bushtit (Psaltriparus minimus) 4
House Wren (Troglodytes aedon) 3
American Robin (Turdus migratorius) 26
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) 3
Yellow Warbler (Setophaga petechia) 19
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia) 2
Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) 13
Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula) 18
Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) 2
Bullock’s Oriole (Icterus bullockii) 1
House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus) 3
Lesser Goldfinch (Spinus psaltria) 1
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis) 3