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Updated on January 17, 2019, 3:25 pm

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17 Jan: @ 15:04:18 
Re: Thoughts on no birds [Kenneth Kinman]
17 Jan: @ 14:10:21 
Thoughts on no birds [Chuck Otte]
16 Jan: @ 10:47:38 
2019 Kansas Birding Big Year [mike rader]
16 Jan: @ 10:10:08 
Savannah Sparrow [Jeff Hansen]
15 Jan: @ 17:33:03 
Bird Feeding Video [Jeff Hansen]
15 Jan: @ 10:07:35 
Surf Scoter Clinton SP [Molly Zahn]
14 Jan: @ 14:55:17 
Pott County DeAD zONE [Gary Haden]
14 Jan: @ 14:27:29 
Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds? [Mark Mayfield]
14 Jan: @ 13:07:20 
Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds? [Sebastian Patti]
14 Jan: @ 12:40:42 
Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds? [Dan]
14 Jan: @ 12:31:00 
Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds? [Chris Hobbs]
14 Jan: @ 12:01:01 
Manhattan - where are the water birds? [Dan]
13 Jan: @ 19:11:58 
Hillsdale Long-tailed Duck still around. [Mark Land]
13 Jan: @ 17:28:34 
More Black Vultures to add to Mannell's report, CK Co. KS 1-13-19 [Jenn Rader]
13 Jan: @ 16:32:16 
Winter Backyard Birds [Paul Griffin]
13 Jan: @ 15:46:38 
Black Vultures [terry mannell]
12 Jan: @ 20:44:37 
Bird mis-ID [Lowell Johnson]
12 Jan: @ 17:33:20 
New Yard Bird [Jeff Hansen]
11 Jan: @ 12:01:52 
No Second Saturday bird walk tomorrow (Wichita) [Cheryl Miller]
11 Jan: @ 09:27:46 
Fw: Regional Editor for the Kansas NAS Christmas Bird Counts (NO SIGHTINGS) [Sebastian Patti]
10 Jan: @ 21:41:13 
Prairie Falcon [Lowell Johnson]
08 Jan: @ 11:46:22 
Baker Wetlands Survey [Daniel Larson]
07 Jan: @ 18:55:09 
CBC's [Max Thompson]
07 Jan: @ 13:44:37 
Re: Long-tailed Duck Hillsdale [David Schneider]
06 Jan: @ 21:35:44 
Falcons at KSU Stock farm [Mark Mayfield]
06 Jan: @ 19:10:29 
Cheney and LaFarge, Jan. 6 [Pete Janzen]
06 Jan: @ 15:11:59 
Long-tailed Duck Hillsdale [Walt Cochran]
05 Jan: @ 19:23:55 
Harvey County [G & J Fenton Friesen]
05 Jan: @ 12:33:42 
Re: St marys CBC Results [coleen brown]
05 Jan: @ 11:31:55 
St marys CBC Results [Jeff Hansen]
03 Jan: @ 12:57:55 
Cheney Lake - gulls and scoters [Mark Nolen]
02 Jan: @ 17:46:51 
Re: [TAS] Topeka Backyard Birds [Randy Carman]
02 Jan: @ 16:02:26 
Hybrid goose [John Row]
02 Jan: @ 10:46:26 
Topeka Backyard Birds [Jeff Hansen]
02 Jan: @ 10:46:02 
Dodge City CBC summary [Jeff Calhoun]
02 Jan: @ 10:17:48 
Sawyer Christmas Bird Count summary [Hofmeier, Jordan [KDWPT]]
01 Jan: @ 23:26:36 
New Year's Day birding [David Haight]
01 Jan: @ 12:13:30 
HV County East Lake [G & J Fenton Friesen]
01 Jan: @ 03:55:58 
County Listing Due February 7 [Kevin Groeneweg]
31 Dec: @ 15:38:45 
2018 Parsons CBC Recap... [Andrew Burnett]
31 Dec: @ 11:49:57 
Re: Gull identification [John Northrup]
31 Dec: @ 10:24:58 
Gull identification [Joseph Miller]
31 Dec: @ 02:37:26 
Re: Are Buteo hybrids possible ? [Scott Seltman]
30 Dec: @ 22:14:13 
Re: Leavenworth/Atchison CBC [John Schukman]
30 Dec: @ 21:26:15 
Marion CBC [TRE Enterprises]
30 Dec: @ 20:53:10 
Leavenworth/Atchison CBC [John Schukman]
30 Dec: @ 20:42:53 
Re: Olathe CBC [Kenneth Butler]
30 Dec: @ 19:53:10 
Red Hills CBC results [Pete Janzen]
30 Dec: @ 19:23:20 
Olathe CBC [Jeff Witters]
30 Dec: @ 15:09:17 
Are Buteo hybrids possible ? [Nickel, James B]





Subject: Thoughts on no birds
Date: Thu Jan 17 2019 15:04 pm
From: kinman AT hotmail.com
 
Dear All,
I don't have any direct experience with zebra mussels, but I've read that their razor sharp shells are quite a nuisance to people walking along beaches and wading in shallow water. Therefore, I wonder if there have been any research that might suggest that ducks and wading birds might be getting injured from walking on those sharp shells. If so, could it result in those birds preferring to frequent areas that are still free of zebra mussels? Or course, it also doesn't help that zebra mussels eat the good algae but don't eat the blue-green algae which are causing toxic blooms.
--------------Ken Kinman, Hays, Kansas

________________________________
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas on behalf of Chuck Otte
Sent: Thursday, January 17, 2019 2:09 PM
To: KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Thoughts on no birds

Gary and Dan both asked a good question that mirror what I've been
fielding a lot of this year, "where are the birds". Since I really didn't
see anyone address it (although several of the responses were humorous) I
thought I'd tackle it.

Many natural factors (and human factors too for that matter) can impact
bird populations on a local or regional level. Birds have the same needs
the we have: food, water and shelter. The presence or absence of any of
these and the quality of same can inmpact how many and which birds are
present at any given time. Yeah, I know, Birds 101.

Weather extremes often are a driving factor on bird populations. There was
quite a bit of the northern Flint Hills that was hard hit by a major
drought from September of 2017 through July of 2018. While it did start
raining in August of 2018 there was aleady a significant loss in
traditional food sources as well as quality and amount of habitat. Lower
levels of native or traditional food supplies will disperse birds
elsewhere. As birds are usually going to be in areas outside of our
backyard feeding stations first, they will move on if food supplies are
limited or scarce. This also points out perhaps how nominally our backyard
feeding impacts bird populations. Much of reported low numbers of birds at
feeders, at least in the northern Flint Hills I feel can be attributed to
11 months of drought. Interestingly, about ten or so years ago there were
some major floods in SE Kansas. I had calls from residents there, in the
late summer and fall following the floods, asking the same questions.
Nearly every caller, when asked, would indicate loss of vegetation and
habitat from flooding.

Milford Lake had some high water levels this late summer (once it started
raining). In late October Milford peaked out almost 10 feet above normal
conservation pool level. Because of the length of time that the lake was
high, areas between the high water mark and conservation pool experienced
expected flood damage with a resulting loss of vegetative cover and with
that, food. When we conducted the Wakefield CBC, which covers a lot of the
wetland areas at the upper end of Milford Lake, we found large areas of
limited vegetation and ZERO birds. Lack of food and cover resulted in bids
going elsewhere.

The thing to keep in mind is that bird populations, as far as location,
are very dynamic within any given year and from year to year. But much of
it is going to come back to water, food and shelter.

Waterbird populations can be even more enigmatic. I suspect that food and
shelter are the driving factors still. The problem is that as humans we
look at the resources, as humans, not as birds would view it. I can think
back to trips to Colorado where I'd see what looked like excellent habitat
and stop to investigate only to find no birds! But if you found birds you
wanted to work the area well as there were always multiple species.

With migratory water birds we also have the function of "have we had
enough cold weather further north to drive them this far south?" I've
noticed over the past few years that Milford Lake has much lower gull
populations than we were having 10 years ago. Is it Zebra Mussels? Is it
blue-green algae? Is it other water quality issues or a food problem? Is
it simply a representation of declining bird populations in general?
Likely it's a combination of many or all of those factors.

Can I tell you exactly why bird populations at Point X, Y, or Z are higher
or lower than "normal? Nope. Christmas Bird Count numbers, on average
across the state, were lower than in past years both in number of species
and number of indiduals. So we simply see additional confirmation of what
we are seeing in our backyards. But I also won't rule out that we are used
to going to Point X to see birds and this year they are at Point Y?

Just some rambling thoughs on a cloudy afternoon.

Chuck

-----
Chuck Otte [email protected]
County Extension Agent, Ag & Natural Resources
Geary County Extension Office, PO BOX 28 785-238-4161
Junction City, Kansas 66441-0028 FAX 785-238-7166
http://www.geary.ksu.edu/

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Subject: Thoughts on no birds
Date: Thu Jan 17 2019 14:10 pm
From: cotte AT ksu.edu
 
Gary and Dan both asked a good question that mirror what I've been 
fielding a lot of this year, "where are the birds". Since I really didn't
see anyone address it (although several of the responses were humorous) I
thought I'd tackle it.

Many natural factors (and human factors too for that matter) can impact
bird populations on a local or regional level. Birds have the same needs
the we have: food, water and shelter. The presence or absence of any of
these and the quality of same can inmpact how many and which birds are
present at any given time. Yeah, I know, Birds 101.

Weather extremes often are a driving factor on bird populations. There was
quite a bit of the northern Flint Hills that was hard hit by a major
drought from September of 2017 through July of 2018. While it did start
raining in August of 2018 there was aleady a significant loss in
traditional food sources as well as quality and amount of habitat. Lower
levels of native or traditional food supplies will disperse birds
elsewhere. As birds are usually going to be in areas outside of our
backyard feeding stations first, they will move on if food supplies are
limited or scarce. This also points out perhaps how nominally our backyard
feeding impacts bird populations. Much of reported low numbers of birds at
feeders, at least in the northern Flint Hills I feel can be attributed to
11 months of drought. Interestingly, about ten or so years ago there were
some major floods in SE Kansas. I had calls from residents there, in the
late summer and fall following the floods, asking the same questions.
Nearly every caller, when asked, would indicate loss of vegetation and
habitat from flooding.

Milford Lake had some high water levels this late summer (once it started
raining). In late October Milford peaked out almost 10 feet above normal
conservation pool level. Because of the length of time that the lake was
high, areas between the high water mark and conservation pool experienced
expected flood damage with a resulting loss of vegetative cover and with
that, food. When we conducted the Wakefield CBC, which covers a lot of the
wetland areas at the upper end of Milford Lake, we found large areas of
limited vegetation and ZERO birds. Lack of food and cover resulted in bids
going elsewhere.

The thing to keep in mind is that bird populations, as far as location,
are very dynamic within any given year and from year to year. But much of
it is going to come back to water, food and shelter.

Waterbird populations can be even more enigmatic. I suspect that food and
shelter are the driving factors still. The problem is that as humans we
look at the resources, as humans, not as birds would view it. I can think
back to trips to Colorado where I'd see what looked like excellent habitat
and stop to investigate only to find no birds! But if you found birds you
wanted to work the area well as there were always multiple species.

With migratory water birds we also have the function of "have we had
enough cold weather further north to drive them this far south?" I've
noticed over the past few years that Milford Lake has much lower gull
populations than we were having 10 years ago. Is it Zebra Mussels? Is it
blue-green algae? Is it other water quality issues or a food problem? Is
it simply a representation of declining bird populations in general?
Likely it's a combination of many or all of those factors.

Can I tell you exactly why bird populations at Point X, Y, or Z are higher
or lower than "normal? Nope. Christmas Bird Count numbers, on average
across the state, were lower than in past years both in number of species
and number of indiduals. So we simply see additional confirmation of what
we are seeing in our backyards. But I also won't rule out that we are used
to going to Point X to see birds and this year they are at Point Y?

Just some rambling thoughs on a cloudy afternoon.

Chuck

-----
Chuck Otte [email protected]
County Extension Agent, Ag & Natural Resources
Geary County Extension Office, PO BOX 28 785-238-4161
Junction City, Kansas 66441-0028 FAX 785-238-7166
http://www.geary.ksu.edu/

For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
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To contact a listowner, send a message to
mailto:[email protected]



Subject: 2019 Kansas Birding Big Year
Date: Wed Jan 16 2019 10:47 am
From: mike_rader AT hotmail.com
 
Hi all,

KDWPT will again be conducting the Kansas Birding Big Year competition in 2019. Results from the 2018 contest will be available in the next couple of weeks. We had a great participation number with over 100 regeristered. The link below has the information about signing up for 2019:

https://ksoutdoors.com/Service...


Thanks,
Mike Rader

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Subject: Savannah Sparrow
Date: Wed Jan 16 2019 10:10 am
From: jeff.hansen.sd AT gmail.com
 
This video shows the savannah sparrow that showed up in my Topeka yard last
week.

https://youtu.be/zVW2zjGSFWU

It's 3 minutes long and explains how to distinguish song sparrows from
savannah sparrows.

I'm still surprised that a Savannah sparrow came to my yard.

--
Jeff Hansen
https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
http://www.kansasnativeplants....
https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

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Subject: Bird Feeding Video
Date: Tue Jan 15 2019 17:33 pm
From: jeff.hansen.sd AT gmail.com
 
I made this video on feeding the birds and it's quite popular. I thought I
better share it with the group. It's just 2.5 minutes long. Hopefully most
of you are already practicing this.

https://youtu.be/CC_3nkAdY4E

Recorded in Topeka back in November.

--
Jeff Hansen
https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
http://www.kansasnativeplants....
https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

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Subject: Surf Scoter Clinton SP
Date: Tue Jan 15 2019 10:07 am
From: mollymzahn AT gmail.com
 
Hi all,
I found a surf scoter just offshore of the cove to the east of the marina
at Clinton SP (DG county) this morning.
Good birding,
Molly Zahn
Lawrence

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Subject: Pott County DeAD zONE
Date: Mon Jan 14 2019 14:55 pm
From: gchaden AT outlook.com
 
I walked from the Rocky Ford parking lot around Willow Lake and back to my car and as Dan noted it was clearly a dead zone in that part of Pottawattamie  County this morning.  I saw no geese or ducks or gulls.  A flock of meadowlarks was present on the road  into the parking lot.  While walking I saw three White-breasted Nuthatches, one adult bald eagle and heard one Pileated Woodpecker.  Large flocks Rock Pigeons and crows were feeding on K-State's north farm on my drive out.  Our feeder a mile north of Bramlage Coliseum has hosted Downeys, Red-Bellied Woodpeckers, Bluejays, Harris and White-throated and House Sparrows and Cardinals, Dark-eyed Juncos and a single Mourning Dove today.  - Gary Haden, Manhattan

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Subject: Manhattan - where are the water birds?
Date: Mon Jan 14 2019 14:27 pm
From: markherb AT ksu.edu
 
Yesterday there were a lot of gulls working the 2nd bend in the river along McDowell Creek Rd. south of 177. There were certainly Ring-billed but I didn™t stick around long enough to identify all of them.

Mark Mayfield

Mark H Mayfield

________________________________
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas on behalf of Sebastian Patti
Sent: Monday, January 14, 2019 1:07 PM
To: [email protected]
Subject: Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds?

˜Hey . . . There IS an "I" in FURLOUGH!!!!


[email protected]
Sebastian T. Patti
770 S. Grand Avenue
Unit 3088
Los Angeles, CA 90017
CELL: 773/304-7488

________________________________
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas on behalf of Chris Hobbs
Sent: Monday, January 14, 2019 12:30 PM
To: KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds?

Furloughed?!

Chris Hobbs
Lenexa
[email protected]

On Mon, Jan 14, 2019, 12:01 PM Dan After an unsuccessful trip to Best Buy to get my steam-powered PC
> serviced, I decided to make a run out to Tuttle Creek Reservoir. What I
> found was a whole bunch of nothing.
>
> At the outlet tubes there was a single Ring-billed Gull flying along the
> river downstream, but absolutely no signs of bird life on the water.
>
> Down at Rocky Ford, another complete lack of any birds on the water, and
> only one 4-yr-old Bald Eagle made a brief flyover.
>
> What gives, Manhattan?
>
> Dan Mulhern
>
> Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
>
> For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
> https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
> For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
> https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
> To contact a listowner, send a message to
> mailto:[email protected]
>

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https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
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mailto:[email protected]

For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
https://listserv.ksu.edu/ksbir...
For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
http://www.ksbirds.org/KSBIRD-...
To contact a listowner, send a message to
mailto:[email protected]

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mailto:[email protected]



Subject: Manhattan - where are the water birds?
Date: Mon Jan 14 2019 13:07 pm
From: sebastianpatti AT hotmail.com
 
˜Hey . . . There IS an "I" in FURLOUGH!!!!


[email protected]
Sebastian T. Patti
770 S. Grand Avenue
Unit 3088
Los Angeles, CA 90017
CELL: 773/304-7488

________________________________
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas on behalf of Chris Hobbs
Sent: Monday, January 14, 2019 12:30 PM
To: KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Re: Manhattan - where are the water birds?

Furloughed?!

Chris Hobbs
Lenexa
[email protected]

On Mon, Jan 14, 2019, 12:01 PM Dan After an unsuccessful trip to Best Buy to get my steam-powered PC
> serviced, I decided to make a run out to Tuttle Creek Reservoir. What I
> found was a whole bunch of nothing.
>
> At the outlet tubes there was a single Ring-billed Gull flying along the
> river downstream, but absolutely no signs of bird life on the water.
>
> Down at Rocky Ford, another complete lack of any birds on the water, and
> only one 4-yr-old Bald Eagle made a brief flyover.
>
> What gives, Manhattan?
>
> Dan Mulhern
>
> Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
>
> For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
> https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
> For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
> https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
> To contact a listowner, send a message to
> mailto:[email protected]
>

For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
https://nam04.safelinks.protec...
To contact a listowner, send a message to
mailto:[email protected]

For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
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Subject: Manhattan - where are the water birds?
Date: Mon Jan 14 2019 12:40 pm
From: browndog06 AT cox.net
 
That would explain things. Thanks, Chris.


Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID

Chris Hobbs wrote:

>Furloughed?!
>
>Chris Hobbs
>Lenexa
>[email protected]
>
>On Mon, Jan 14, 2019, 12:01 PM Dan
>> After an unsuccessful trip to Best Buy to get my steam-powered PC
>> serviced, I decided to make a run out to Tuttle Creek Reservoir. What I
>> found was a whole bunch of nothing.
>>
>> At the outlet tubes there was a single Ring-billed Gull flying along the
>> river downstream, but absolutely no signs of bird life on the water.
>>
>> Down at Rocky Ford, another complete lack of any birds on the water, and
>> only one 4-yr-old Bald Eagle made a brief flyover.
>>
>> What gives, Manhattan?
>>
>> Dan Mulhern
>>
>> Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
>>
>> For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
>> https://listserv.ksu.edu/ksbir...
>> For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
>> http://www.ksbirds.org/KSBIRD-...
>> To contact a listowner, send a message to
>> mailto:[email protected]
>>
>
>For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
>https://listserv.ksu.edu/ksbir...
>For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
>http://www.ksbirds.org/KSBIRD-...
>To contact a listowner, send a message to
>mailto:[email protected]


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Subject: Manhattan - where are the water birds?
Date: Mon Jan 14 2019 12:31 pm
From: chobbs.f1 AT gmail.com
 
Furloughed?!

Chris Hobbs
Lenexa
[email protected]

On Mon, Jan 14, 2019, 12:01 PM Dan After an unsuccessful trip to Best Buy to get my steam-powered PC
> serviced, I decided to make a run out to Tuttle Creek Reservoir. What I
> found was a whole bunch of nothing.
>
> At the outlet tubes there was a single Ring-billed Gull flying along the
> river downstream, but absolutely no signs of bird life on the water.
>
> Down at Rocky Ford, another complete lack of any birds on the water, and
> only one 4-yr-old Bald Eagle made a brief flyover.
>
> What gives, Manhattan?
>
> Dan Mulhern
>
> Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
>
> For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
> https://listserv.ksu.edu/ksbir...
> For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
> http://www.ksbirds.org/KSBIRD-...
> To contact a listowner, send a message to
> mailto:[email protected]
>

For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
https://listserv.ksu.edu/ksbir...
For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
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Subject: Manhattan - where are the water birds?
Date: Mon Jan 14 2019 12:01 pm
From: browndog06 AT cox.net
 
After an unsuccessful trip to Best Buy to get my steam-powered PC serviced, I decided to make a run out to Tuttle Creek Reservoir. What I found was a whole bunch of nothing.

At the outlet tubes there was a single Ring-billed Gull flying along the river downstream, but absolutely no signs of bird life on the water.

Down at Rocky Ford, another complete lack of any birds on the water, and only one 4-yr-old Bald Eagle made a brief flyover.

What gives, Manhattan?

Dan Mulhern

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID

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Subject: Hillsdale Long-tailed Duck still around.
Date: Sun Jan 13 2019 19:11 pm
From: markeland AT kc.rr.com
 
After shoveling our 8 inches of snow (whew) I needed to get away from being a shut in so we dashed down to Hillsdale Lake in Miami county. The roads were fine but the marina lot had not been plowed. I parked and trekked down to the lake. The long-tailed was still hanging out with the scaup near the ramp for jet skis. Just like when we saw it in late December. 
Also seen was a Red-breasted Merganser and lots of Gadwall and Common Goldeneye. In addition it looks like the sledders were having a great time going downhill, not so much coming up hill.

Mark Land
Overland Park

Sent from my iPhone
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Subject: More Black Vultures to add to Mannell's report, CK Co. KS 1-13-19
Date: Sun Jan 13 2019 17:28 pm
From: jennrader34 AT gmail.com
 
It was lovely to see the Mannell's at the SEK Nature Center this afternoon.
Thanks to Terry's call I was able to relocate some of the Black Vultures he
and Sam saw just west of Galena. I decided to back track just a bit and
went north on Chico Road (next to the furthest west cemetery on HWY 66),
very close to where I saw a group of 5 BV's. I was surprised to see a large
group on a powerline tower to the east of Chico Road. Below is my account.
I estimated a total of 50 Black Vultures that I was able to scope. I posted
my two best pictures on eBird.

Happy Birdy New Year,

Jenn Rader
Galena, KS

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From:
Date: Sun, Jan 13, 2019 at 5:17 PM
Subject: eBird Report - Black Vulture Roost, Chico Road, Jan 13, 2019
To:


Black Vulture Roost, Chico Road, Cherokee, Kansas, US
Jan 13, 2019 4:10 PM - 4:25 PM
Protocol: Stationary
2 species

Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus) 50 Mannell's originally saw a small
group of BV's from HWY 66 in a tree between Galena and Riverton and gave me
a call. I went out about 40 minutes later and saw 5 in a tree along side
the hwy. I decided to head north on Chico road to see if there were any
more birds and found a large group roosting on a big power line. I counted
44 birds at the powerline tower, with one bird flying off back toward the
group of five close to the hwy. I estimated at least 50 birds in the area
from locations, which are within half a mile from each other. While I was
observing the birds on the tower, several would get up and fly, then come
back around and land. Best pictures have been added. I was able to scope
these birds, and all seen were Black Vultures.
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) 2

View this checklist online at https://ebird.org/view/checkli...

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (https://ebird.org/home)

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Subject: Winter Backyard Birds
Date: Sun Jan 13 2019 16:32 pm
From: pgriffin1 AT cox.net
 
Hi Folks,

I just had a couple of Eurasian Collared Doves at my feeders here in Riverside, in Wichita. They were with a small group of Mourning Doves. They were going after the millet on the ground. I don™t see them very often in the Winter, but they nest here in the summer. I also have a couple of Red-breasted Nuthatches. They like the suet and the SunFlower seeds. A lot of Juncos, some House Finches, many White Breasted Nuthatches, Downy Woodpeckers, Carolina Wrens, Chickadee's and a few House Sparrows. Every now and then, a few Goldfinches eating Thistle seed. A lady up the alley had a Yellow-rumped Warbler, going for the suet a few days ago. In recent weeks I have heard at night, Great Horned Owls. They have a nest around here some where. There are a lot of big Cottonwood trees, along the river near here.

Happy Birding,

Paul Griffin, Wichita, Ks
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Subject: Black Vultures
Date: Sun Jan 13 2019 15:46 pm
From: terryman0405 AT gmail.com
 
Sam and I stopped at at the nature center on our way back from a trip to
Louisiana. Just west of Galena on Hwy 66 were 9 Black Vultures.

Terry Mannell
Topeka

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Subject: Bird mis-ID
Date: Sat Jan 12 2019 20:44 pm
From: ljohnson AT ksu.edu
 
A few days ago I posted a photo of a bird I called an immature Prairie Falcon.  Tammi Maffitt pointed out that it was actually a Prairie race Merlin.  Guess I'm not a very good judge of size.  Lowell Johnson  Manhattan



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Subject: New Yard Bird
Date: Sat Jan 12 2019 17:33 pm
From: jeff.hansen.sd AT gmail.com
 
I was sure surprised to find a savannah sparrow in my Topeka yard today.
It had the faint yellow lore and the short tail. I posted a picture with my
Ebird report.

I didn't think these sparrows were seen in yards. I decided to check
feederwatch data from this year and last year.

2% of stations reported savannah sparrows in Kansas last year and none so
far this year.

https://feederwatch.org/pfw/st...

--
Jeff Hansen
https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
http://www.kansasnativeplants....
https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

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Subject: No Second Saturday bird walk tomorrow (Wichita)
Date: Fri Jan 11 2019 12:01 pm
From: avian67226 AT gmail.com
 
Hi friends. There will not be a Second Saturday bird walk at Chisholm Creek
Park (Wichita) tomorrow.

--
Cheryl Miller
Wichita, KS

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Subject: Fw: Regional Editor for the Kansas NAS Christmas Bird Counts (NO SIGHTINGS)
Date: Fri Jan 11 2019 9:27 am
From: sebastianpatti AT hotmail.com
 
Happy New Year!!

I wanted let you know that I have left the position of Regional Editor for the National Audubon Society. As some of you know,
I have taken a new job in Los Angeles and will be completely relocating in the spring.

Replacing me will be GENE YOUNG, who currently serves as editor of BOTH the KOS and OOS Bulletins. Please
send any documentation for your CBCs directly to him. His e-mail address is:

[email protected]

and his mailing address is:

Eugene A. Young
Northern Oklahoma College
Agriculture and Biological Science
Tonkawa, OKLAHOMA 74653-0310

I did want to take this opportunity to thank each of you for your hard work and dedication to the "cause." Birding is not
only just plain fun, but the NAS CBC program also confirms that as citizen scientists we can and do have a positive impact
and can make a direct contribution to ornithology. Thanks.

[email protected]
Sebastian T. Patti
770 S. Grand Avenue
Unit 3088
Los Angeles, CA 90017
CELL: 773/304-7488

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Subject: Prairie Falcon
Date: Thu Jan 10 2019 21:41 pm
From: ljohnson AT ksu.edu
 
On Sunday Mark Mayfield reported three falcons, a Kestrel, a peregrine and an unidentified third falcon in the K-State livestock farms.  On Tuesday I spotted a Kestrel and a Prairie Falcon near the beef farm there.  For those interested I have posted its photo on my web site.    In several return trips there I have seen only the Kestrel.

Lowell Johnson

Manhattan

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Subject: Baker Wetlands Survey
Date: Tue Jan 8 2019 11:46 am
From: birdkansa AT gmail.com
 
Roger Boyd, Scott Kimball, Nick Pumphrey, Kylee Sharp, and Dan Larson
surveyed Baker Wetlands, Lawrence, Kansas on January 6, 2019. It started at
34 degrees F and ended at 52. And 52 species were recorded.

2018- 48

2017 - 58

2016 - 62

2015 - 42

2014 - 27

2013 - 31

2012 - 35

2011 - 18

2010 - 20

Not all of these were the first week of January. 2014 and before were done
on the west restoration area only.

A fair number of ducks were seen including 4 Buffleheads. A single
LeConte's Sparrow was located.The complete count is at the link below.

Thanks

Dan Larson

Berryton Kansas


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Subject: CBC's
Date: Mon Jan 7 2019 18:55 pm
From: maxt AT cox.net
 
Please if you have finished up your counts, get the results to me as soon as
you can. We need to input the data so we can get the database finished up
and analyzed.

Thanks so much.

Max





Max C. Thompson

1729 E. 11th Ave.

Winfield, KS




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Subject: Long-tailed Duck Hillsdale
Date: Mon Jan 7 2019 13:44 pm
From: 000006b9183db5ce-dmarc-request AT listserv.ksu.edu
 
The long-tailed duck is still there today at Hillsdale Lake mixed in with the scaup.
David Schneider


> On Jan 6, 2019, at 3:11 PM, Walt Cochran <[email protected]> wrote:
>
> A single long-tailed duck is located just East of the main Marina West of the Dam and East of the Marina mixed in with Scaup. Providing very good looks and at this time close to shore!
>
> Sent from my iPhone
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> To contact a listowner, send a message to
> mailto:[email protected]

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Subject: Falcons at KSU Stock farm
Date: Sun Jan 6 2019 21:35 pm
From: markherb AT ksu.edu
 
Late this afternoon (4:45-5:15, Sunday), there were two large falcons chasing (and catching) birds at the KSU Stock farm around the poultry area where all the buildings are. I'm sure one was a Peregrine after watching it feed for 15 minutes from 50 meters with a scope.  I never had a good look at the other. Based on the flight and pursuit behavior, it too was likely a Peregrine but I couldn't rule out a Prairie. Both birds were on the small end of the the size range.

There was also a Kestrel and a Harlan's Hawk in the area.

Mark Mayfield
Manhattan

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Subject: Cheney and LaFarge, Jan. 6
Date: Sun Jan 6 2019 19:10 pm
From: pete.janzen AT sbcglobal.net
 
I finally dragged myself out of the house for some 2019 birding today. I
found some birds that had been previously reported by others. Single
Black Scoter and Lesser Blackcked Gull at Cheney Reservoir, Reno Co.
(Heimerman Point) and a single ffirst/second year Glaucous Gull at
Lafarge Sandpit, Sedgwick County. The large flocks of Common Mergansers
and Common Goldeneye are here. I saw about 8 Bald Eagles so there are
not that many here compared to some other years. I could not find a loon
at Cheney. Also there was a single American PIpit at Cheney Dam
(Sedgwick Co.). American Pipits have been found in several previous
winters in the vicinity of the dam at Cheney. Apparently in mild years
they are able to make a living there. Double-crested Cormorants are in
substantial numbers around Wichita this winter.

--
Pete Janzen Wichita, KS [email protected]


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Subject: Long-tailed Duck Hillsdale
Date: Sun Jan 6 2019 15:11 pm
From: 0000023297197213-dmarc-request AT listserv.ksu.edu
 
A single long-tailed duck is located just East of the main Marina West of the Dam and East of the Marina mixed in with Scaup.  Providing very good looks and at this time close to shore!

Sent from my iPhone
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Subject: Harvey County
Date: Sat Jan 5 2019 19:23 pm
From: friesen.fenton AT gmail.com
 
I co led the Kauffman Museum bird walk in North Newton today with Rod
Wedel. We saw the regular suspects. I then went to Western Harvey County
where the corner of 24th and Riverpark Road held of all things a
Dickcissel. I'll post to Ebird on that once I process things a bit. A
Prairie Falcon just east of the Alta Mill lingered from the CBC. A trip
east of Newton and south a bit led to a Barn Owl at its usual location.
All in Harvey County.

Still can't quite believe the Dickcissel. I keep thinking it must be
something else. It was really out of place. Best view was a side / back
view.

Gregg Friesen
Newton, KS.

--
Gregg & Joanna Fenton Friesen
Newton, KS

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Subject: St marys CBC Results
Date: Sat Jan 5 2019 12:33 pm
From: coleenm2002 AT hotmail.com
 
Great report and comparison info, Jeff. Thanks for sharing! It was a lot of fun!
Coleen Brown, Manhattan



Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone


-------- Original message --------
From: Jeff Hansen
Date: 1/5/19 11:31 AM (GMT-06:00)
To: St Marys Birders , Topeka Audubon , KSBIRD List
Subject: St marys CBC Results

If interested in the details of the birds count, I put them on my blog.

https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

On the day of the count we had cloudy skies and light wind. Day time temperatures started at 16 F and only rose to 19 F. There was no snow on the ground. Large bodies of water were open and most moving water was open. A total of 15 people participated. We had 7 groups of people who birded in the field and only 1 group that watched their feeders.

We had a total of 27,101 birds counted composed of 67 species for the count day and 4 count week species. Count week species were seen 3 days before or after the count day but not on count day. By far the most abundantly seen species was the Snow goose at 20,683.

We added 2 new species to the count - purple finch and great-tailed grackle.

We had high counts for many species on the count as compared to previous counts. Most notable were the 63 Greater Prairie Chickens and 83 Trumpeter Swans.

As far as low counts, we only had one American Robin.

We missed a number of species such as Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and Lapland Longspurs.

We had no rare species this year but the prairie chickens and swans were a nice surprise.

Ive composed three tables: Counts for the year, Counts from all years, and Effort from all years. They can be found by following the link to the blog.

--
Jeff Hansen
https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
http://www.kansasnativeplants....
https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

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Subject: St marys CBC Results
Date: Sat Jan 5 2019 11:31 am
From: jeff.hansen.sd AT gmail.com
 
If interested in the details of the birds count, I put them on my blog.

https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

On the day of the count we had cloudy skies and light wind. Day time
temperatures started at 16 F and only rose to 19 F. There was no snow on
the ground. Large bodies of water were open and most moving water was open.
A total of 15 people participated. We had 7 groups of people who birded in
the field and only 1 group that watched their feeders.

We had a total of 27,101 birds counted composed of 67 species for the count
day and 4 count week species. Count week species were seen 3 days before or
after the count day but not on count day. By far the most abundantly seen
species was the Snow goose at 20,683.

We added 2 new species to the count - purple finch and great-tailed
grackle.

We had high counts for many species on the count as compared to previous
counts. Most notable were the 63 Greater Prairie Chickens and 83 Trumpeter
Swans.

As far as low counts, we only had one American Robin.

We missed a number of species such as Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and Lapland
Longspurs.

We had no rare species this year but the prairie chickens and swans were a
nice surprise.

I™ve composed three tables: Counts for the year, Counts from all years,
and Effort from all years. They can be found by following the link to the
blog.

--
Jeff Hansen
https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
http://www.kansasnativeplants....
https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

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Subject: Cheney Lake - gulls and scoters
Date: Thu Jan 3 2019 12:57 pm
From: marktnol AT hotmail.com
 
Just spotted three black scoters at Cheney Lake (near the west shore sailboat marina, diving very close to the east-most jetty. Two female/immature and one male.

Also had 4 lesser black-backed gulls and a possible herringXglaucous today. These were viewed from the dam (on the lake and the outlet area).

The last two days have been great birding at Cheney (Sedgwick, Reno, Kingman counties). Herring gulls and common mergansers have arrived in full force. There were also two Glaucous Gulls (an adult and first year) hanging around the east side and damn area (seen Jan 2) in addition to the possible hybrid.

Mark Nolen
Wichita, KS
[email protected]



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Subject: Topeka Backyard Birds
Date: Wed Jan 2 2019 17:46 pm
From: ralfcarman AT gmail.com
 
I had my first ever yard Sapsucker yesterday. The water is what attracted
her. Every day at dawn and dusk I get up to 5 White Throated Sparrows on
the ground under my feeder feeding and spending a lot of time chasing each
other around! They are also joined by Cardinals and Mourning Doves that
feed more calmly. Randy
On Wed, Jan 2, 2019 at 10:46 AM Jeff Hansen
wrote:

> Thought I'd share some observations from my Topeka yard.
>
> I filled all feeders this morning (they were all emptied yesterday). I
> kept hearing this crying bird call. I'd heard it a couple days ago too.
> Thought its probably a blue jay. But it was a sapsucker. I saw it make the
> sound. Never heard them vocalize. Later I saw 2, probably why it was
> vocalizing. Maybe guarding its suet log.
>
> I still have a fox sparrow in my yard. I've never had one stay this long.
> Usually just a visit.
>
> I also have 2 white throated sparrows. I also never have them stay this
> late.
>
> I have no harris's sparrows.
>
> I had a hairy woodpecker this morning. It's been years since one visited
> the yard. Not at a feeder but up in the tree.
>
> The red shouldered hawk still visits daily. I put out euthanized house
> sparrows for it on a table. It flies down, grabs one and flies off with it.
>
>
> --
> Jeff Hansen
> https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
> http://www.kansasnativeplants....
> https://kansasgarden.blogspot....
>
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Subject: Hybrid goose
Date: Wed Jan 2 2019 16:02 pm
From: johmarrow AT hotmail.com
 
There's a hybrid goose, possible snow x Canada at Lake Shawnee on the west side, just north of the Ted Ensley Gardens.

John Row
Manhattan, KS

Sent from my iPhone
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Subject: Topeka Backyard Birds
Date: Wed Jan 2 2019 10:46 am
From: jeff.hansen.sd AT gmail.com
 
Thought I'd share some observations from my Topeka yard.

I filled all feeders this morning (they were all emptied yesterday). I
kept hearing this crying bird call. I'd heard it a couple days ago too.
Thought its probably a blue jay. But it was a sapsucker. I saw it make the
sound. Never heard them vocalize. Later I saw 2, probably why it was
vocalizing. Maybe guarding its suet log.

I still have a fox sparrow in my yard. I've never had one stay this long.
Usually just a visit.

I also have 2 white throated sparrows. I also never have them stay this
late.

I have no harris's sparrows.

I had a hairy woodpecker this morning. It's been years since one visited
the yard. Not at a feeder but up in the tree.

The red shouldered hawk still visits daily. I put out euthanized house
sparrows for it on a table. It flies down, grabs one and flies off with it.

--
Jeff Hansen
https://www.youtube.com/Backya...
http://www.kansasnativeplants....
https://kansasgarden.blogspot....

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Subject: Dodge City CBC summary
Date: Wed Jan 2 2019 10:46 am
From: jeffcalhoun11 AT gmail.com
 
Seventeen observers participated on the Dodge City CBC last Sunday,
December 30. Although I, personally, had what I'd call a slow day, 68
species were recorded. It was a great time with a few notable events:

white geese -- Although there are a bunch around, less than 200 were
counted on count day... Ross's Geese were missed entirely

Cackling Geese - I've seen a few counts noting high numbers of these, and
Dodge joins that group with a new all-time high count of 794.

Waterfowl - Hooded Merganser was a new record for the count, but a handful
of odd misses also limited the overall species total

Raptors - All expected Accipiters, Buteos and Falcons were recorded in
average or below average numbers, while 44 Northern Harriers was a new
all-time high!

Water Birds -- Yes, this deserves a special category on this count!! Two
Ring-billed Gulls were reported for the 3rd time ever and the first time
since the 1970's... Few other aquatic lingerers except two Great Blue
Herons.

Passerines - An average showing for most species, although there are a few
highlights. The best bird of the count award goes to the Zempels who found
a Say's Phoebe! Two Northern Shrikes were noted and also represent a new
bird for the count! Better numbers of Meadowlarks than in recent years were
fun to count for many observers.Twenty Black-billed Magpies were recorded,
a number I always enjoy watching.

A big thanks to all that participated!

Jeff Calhoun
Dodge City, KS

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Subject: Sawyer Christmas Bird Count summary
Date: Wed Jan 2 2019 10:17 am
From: Jordan.Hofmeier AT ks.gov
 
The 2018 Sawyer Christmas Bird Count was completed on Thursday Dec. 20, 2018. This year marked the 44th year of the count. Unfortunately, it seems the wind had a heavy hand in our totals, with only 5,935 individuals (lowest individual total since 1999/2000) and 67 species (lowest number of species since 2010/2011) + 6 Count Week species. Naturally, the following Friday would have been a glorious day for a bird count.


There were no record counts of any species (aside from 1 new recorded species - see below), though Cedar Waxwing (405) was the 2nd highest ever (compared to 450 individuals in 1982).


Good finds

Inca Dove - first for the count and first record for Barber County (at least from what I can tell in the Birds of Kansas book)

Lark Sparrow - (observed in only 3 counts)

Red-shouldered Hawk - (observed in 3 counts)

Eastern Phoebe - (observed in 8 counts)

Pied-billed Grebe - (observed in 5 counts)

Common Yellowthroat - (count week)


Strange/Notable misses

Wild Turkey (86% of counts - it was observed in count week however)

Blue Jay (82% counts)

Ring-necked Pheasant (80% counts)

Cooper's Hawk (80%)

Barred Owl (77%)

Golden-crowned Kinglet (68%)



--------------------------------------------------------

Jordan Hofmeier

Aquatic Ecologist, Ecological Services

Kansas Dept. of Wildlife, Parks, & Tourism

512 SE 25th Ave, Pratt, KS 67124

Office: (620) 672-0798

Cell: (785) 249-0874

Fax: (620) 672-2972

[email protected]

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Subject: New Year's Day birding
Date: Tue Jan 1 2019 23:26 pm
From: dhaight1 AT sbcglobal.net
 
I began the new year by observing 15 bird species in my back yard including a White Winged Dove which appears to be hanging around my neighborhood this winter, numerous Goldfinches with a few Pine Siskins mixed in, a Red Breasted and a White Breasted Nuthatch and  a Carolina Wren.  This was a good beginning to the year.  Happy New Year.

David Haight
Abilene, KS

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Subject: HV County East Lake
Date: Tue Jan 1 2019 12:13 pm
From: friesen.fenton AT gmail.com
 
I birded Harvey County East Lake this AM.  Lots of geese flying over the
lake with few landing; all Canada. Highlights include a Red-shouldered
Hawk and 3 Purple Finches at Walton's Landing. The two local Bald Eagles
spent the hour fishing.

Gregg

--
Gregg & Joanna Fenton Friesen
Newton, KS

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Subject: County Listing Due February 7
Date: Tue Jan 1 2019 3:55 am
From: kgroeneweg AT sbcglobal.net
 
Happy new year!
Yes, you read that right...I'm skipping January. I'll be out of the country (birding, of course) for the first three weeks of January starting today, so I'll catch up on things for the February update, giving you time to compile your 2018 stats and get a good jump on 2019. If you've already sent me an update for this month, no worries if you send another update next month.
Please send me your county updates, as well as updates to your Kansas life and year list totals, by Thursday, February7. To participate you must have seen or heard a minimum of 75 species to be "listable" in a county. Send your updates [email protected] Please send only updates to your list totals and not your entire list of county totals. Let me know if you have any questions.





Kevin Groeneweg

Wichita




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Subject: 2018 Parsons CBC Recap...
Date: Mon Dec 31 2018 15:38 pm
From: aburnett9180 AT gmail.com
 
Parsons CBC 2018 Report....

First off a big thank you to all the volunteers who helped with the
counting efforts for the 41st Parsons CBC. The count was held Dec 22nd,
2018. We had count records for hours birding and participants. This
coupled with awesome weather allowed us to have a wonderful count total
despite what appeared to be subpar birding. What an awesome group we had.

The count ended up with 100 total species and 60,505 individuals. About 20
of these species were only seen in one of the 6 zones. This happens nearly
every year, but it amazes me none-the-less. The combinations of habitats
in each zone really allows the species numbers to pile up.

Best species was probably Greater Scaup - making it's first appearance on
the count.

Other Notable species seen: Lapland Longspur, Merlin, Boneparte's Gull,
Chipping Sparrow, Western Meadowlark, & Purple Finch.

Notable Misses: Wood Duck, Double-crested Cormorant, Red-breasted
Nuthatch, Pine Siskin, Common Yellowthroat, LeConte's Sparrow, Eastern
Screech-owl.

What really drove the total up was getting almost every realistic water
bird species and every expected sparrow species.

Record high counts were recorded for the following species: Trumpeter
Swan(67), Mallard(52,466), Canvasback(285), Ruddy Duck(65), Cooper's
Hawk(6), Red-shouldered Hawk(13), Barred Owl (8), Red-bellied
Woodpecker(75), White-breasted Nuthatch (17), Sedge Wren(6), Northern
Mockingbird(51), Western Meadowlark(11)

This count ranks as the 2nd highest in the history of the count for both
total species and total individuals to last years count. Andrew Burnett
rural Erie, KS

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Subject: Gull identification
Date: Mon Dec 31 2018 11:49 am
From: jdn008 AT hotmail.com
 
Excellent post, Joseph!

John Northrup
Ashland County Ohio
________________________________
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas on behalf of Joseph Miller
Sent: Monday, December 31, 2018 11:24 AM
To: KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Gull identification

Hello everybody,
Andrew and I have been talking a lot about gulls lately and its winter again and that means swarms of gulls descend on our lakes and landfills and a handful of crazed birders try to identify these bastards. Weve been bothered with how these species are being identified in Kansas (and beyond). Theyre hard, harder than you think. Gulls are the kind of thing where you need to be immersed to be proficient, which most of us arent. Andrew and I arent claiming to be experts on the subject, (we are but novices compared to real Gullmen) but we have (especially Andrew) spent hundreds of hours staring at tens of thousands of large gulls over the last 5-6 years in Kansas, so I think were qualified to say something...

GULLS ARE HARD

Gulls dont just have 4 or 5 plumages, its more like 27 per species; they are extremely variable! Also rare gulls are, like, actually rare, like at least one in a thousand for Glaucous/Kumliens/Great Black Backed etc and much rarer for all the rest, so if you think you have eight species in one spot, or multiple individuals of rare species, then uhh, uhh you better have a lot of pictures. There are many many times you go out and see only maybe three species, or even just two.

When in doubt TAKE PICTURES, of the wings especially, and post them in the extremely helpful NORTH AMERICAN GULLS Facebook page, where all the real gull experts live.
Actually, just always take pictures, even bad ones are fine. DIGISCOPE, It helps.

Ive laid out some common gull scenarios you may find yourself in, below:

#1: You think its a Ring-billed gull. It is. These comprise probably 85% of all gulls in Kansas in winter (Abundant)

#2: You think its a Herring Gull. Is it bigger than a ring-billed? Its a Herring (Very common)

#3: You think its a Thayers (Iceland Gull). It probably isnt, but it could be. This is probably the third most common gull in winter, but its not abundant. A lot of the ID here is based on wingtip pattern, so be prepared to watch that carefully and know what pattern appears on each of the outer primaries. (Uncommon to rare, per location)

#4: You think its a Lesser Black Backed. It probably is, these are pretty obvious. Sub-adults are tricky, take care and get photos. (Scarce to uncommon)

#5: You think its a Glaucous. Probably; theyre *almost* unmistakeable. Way bigger and way whiter than you think. Completely white wingtips, always. (Low-density, but sometimes present. Rare-ish)

#6: You think its a California. Its most likely not! These are much rarer than a lot of people think. Andrew and I have only seen *THREE* in 5+ years of watching gulls in Kansas, and its not because were oblivious. If you thinks you see an adult, look closer. Adult (and 4th cycle especially) Thayers gulls can resemble Californias, with smaller size, dark eyes, darker back, smaller bill with red and black marking and grayish legs. The wingtips however will be more lightly marked. Californias look like Ring-billed gulls, but theyre bigger and lanky, and their bills are going to be clearly marked. Their legs are also greenish more than grayish. Younger birds are harder, as Herring gulls can approximate every plumage that Calis have. Youre gonna have to be pretty attune to body shape and profile, as well as subtle plumage details and bill shape and color. Just take pictures really, its easier for most people. So yeah, Im saying a lot of reports are misidentified. (Rare)

#7: Great Black Backed. Is it huge? Like really huge? Yeah, thats what it is, probably. Take pictures cause its rare. (Rare)

#8: Iceland Gull (nominate subspecies, the white ones). Those are almost impossible to find down here, because theyre not really here. Its probably a Glaucous or really pale Kumliens type, which are still rare.
(Very, Very rare)

#9: Slaty-backed gull: Is it an adult? Is it huge? And like really, really black-backed? Maybe. Take pictures. If its not huge, its almost certainly a Lesser Black Backed. If its not an adult, or close to adult, then its just a Herring, Im sorry.
(Accidental, not been seen in Kansas..yet)

There are probably more species I could cover, but these are the most likely to cause issues. If you are already great at gulls, then you probably know this stuff, but take comfort in the fact you still misidentify a lot of individuals; I do, we all do.

Just remember, the really rare ones comprise less than .01% of what you see, and the other 99.99% are trying to trick you into thinking theyre the ones you want to see

Thanks for reading this rant,
Joseph


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Subject: Gull identification
Date: Mon Dec 31 2018 10:24 am
From: josephlowellmiller AT gmail.com
 
Hello everybody, 
Andrew and I have been talking a lot about gulls lately and it™s winter again and that means swarms of gulls descend on our lakes and landfills and a handful of crazed birders try to identify these bastards. We™ve been bothered with how these species are being identified in Kansas (and beyond). They™re hard, harder than you think. Gulls are the kind of thing where you need to be immersed to be proficient, which most of us aren™t. Andrew and I aren™t claiming to be experts on the subject, (we are but novices compared to real Gullmen) but we have (especially Andrew) spent hundreds of hours staring at tens of thousands of large gulls over the last 5-6 years in Kansas, so I think we™re qualified to say something...

GULLS ARE HARD

Gulls don™t just have 4 or 5 plumages, it™s more like 27 per species; they are extremely variable! Also rare gulls are, like, actually rare, like at least one in a thousand for Glaucous/Kumlien™s/Great Black Backed etc and much rarer for all the rest, so if you think you have eight species in one spot, or multiple individuals of rare species, then uhh, uhh you better have a lot of pictures. There are many many times you go out and see only maybe three species, or even just two.

When in doubt TAKE PICTURES, of the wings especially, and post them in the extremely helpful NORTH AMERICAN GULLS Facebook page, where all the real gull experts live.
Actually, just always take pictures, even bad ones are fine. DIGISCOPE, It helps.

I™ve laid out some common gull scenarios you may find yourself in, below:

#1: You think it™s a Ring-billed gull. It is. These comprise probably 85% of all gulls in Kansas in winter (Abundant)

#2: You think it™s a Herring Gull. Is it bigger than a ring-billed? It™s a Herring (Very common)

#3: You think it™s a Thayer™s (Iceland Gull). It probably isn™t, but it could be. This is probably the third most common gull in winter, but it™s not abundant. A lot of the ID here is based on wingtip pattern, so be prepared to watch that carefully and know what pattern appears on each of the outer primaries. (Uncommon to rare, per location)

#4: You think it™s a Lesser Black Backed. It probably is, these are pretty obvious. Sub-adults are tricky, take care and get photos. (Scarce to uncommon)

#5: You think it™s a Glaucous. Probably; they™re *almost* unmistakeable. Way bigger and way whiter than you think. Completely white wingtips, always. (Low-density, but sometimes present. Rare-ish)

#6: You think it™s a California. It™s most likely not! These are much rarer than a lot of people think. Andrew and I have only seen *THREE* in 5+ years of watching gulls in Kansas, and it™s not because we™re oblivious. If you thinks you see an adult, look closer. Adult (and 4th cycle especially) Thayer™s gulls can resemble California™s, with smaller size, dark eyes, darker back, smaller bill with red and black marking and grayish legs. The wingtips however will be more lightly marked. California™s look like Ring-billed gulls, but they™re bigger and lanky, and their bills are going to be clearly marked. Their legs are also greenish more than grayish. Younger birds are harder, as Herring gulls can approximate every plumage that Calis have. You™re gonna have to be pretty attune to body shape and profile, as well as subtle plumage details and bill shape and color. Just take pictures really, it™s easier for most people. So yeah, I™m saying a lot of reports are misidentified. (Rare)

#7: Great Black Backed. Is it huge? Like really huge? Yeah, that™s what it is, probably. Take pictures cause it™s rare. (Rare)

#8: Iceland Gull (nominate subspecies, the white ones). Those are almost impossible to find down here, because they™re not really here. It™s probably a Glaucous or really pale Kumliens type, which are still rare.
(Very, Very rare)

#9: Slaty-backed gull: Is it an adult? Is it huge? And like really, really black-backed? Maybe. Take pictures. If it™s not huge, it™s almost certainly a Lesser Black Backed. If it™s not an adult, or close to adult, then it™s just a Herring, I™m sorry.
(Accidental, not been seen in Kansas..yet)

There are probably more species I could cover, but these are the most likely to cause issues. If you are already great at gulls, then you probably know this stuff, but take comfort in the fact you still misidentify a lot of individuals; I do, we all do.

Just remember, the really rare ones comprise less than .01% of what you see, and the other 99.99% are trying to trick you into thinking they™re the ones you want to see

Thanks for reading this rant,
Joseph


Sent from my iPhone
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Subject: Are Buteo hybrids possible ?
Date: Mon Dec 31 2018 2:37 am
From: sselt AT gbta.net
 
Hybrid buteos are exceedingly rare, but have been well-documented in a few
cases. My first thought went to a report from Texas of a possible
Rough-legged/Swainson's hybrid from northern Texas a few years back. For
whatever reason, (certainly poor-judgment on the part of the reviewer), I
was asked to look at some of the documentation which included a video of the
bird hunting. It's hovering behavior was very very very much like that of a
typical RLHA while photos of the bird perched could easily pass for a SWHA.
Experts came to agree that this individual was a hybrid of the two species.

An ebird document of an apparent RLHA/RTHA in Kansas near Caldwell can be
accessed here (might have to copy and paste the url):
https://ebird.org/news/hybrid_...
A brief discussion of hybrid hawks is at the end of that web page. The
author is Brian L. Sullivan, noted raptor expert and the author of a number
of books on birds.

Another webpage from Birding magazine covers this topic as well:
http://www.globalraptors.org/g...

I don't know if I've ever seen a hybrid buteo. Perhaps. I will admit having
seen thousands I couldn't identify.

Scott Seltman
Larned, Kansas

-----Original Message-----
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas [mailto:KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On
Behalf Of Nickel, James B
Sent: Sunday, December 30, 2018 3:08 PM
To: KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Are Buteo hybrids possible ?

I have been seeing an odd looking hawk close to my house.It is a Buteo. The
breast looks like the barring of a Red-shouldered Hawk. The belly is much
darker and looks more like a Rough-legged Hawk. I thought it was a
Rough-legged Hawk at first, but then it flushed and I saw a red tail. I know
Red-tailed hawks are highly variable, and that is what the bird probably is.
My question is: have Buteo hybrids been seen in Kansas and what would be the
odds of seeing one? Jim Nickel Peabody, Kansas

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Subject: Leavenworth/Atchison CBC
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 22:14 pm
From: schuksaya AT kc.rr.com
 
With the one more party added in the total species number was 78.

John Schukman

-----Original Message-----
From: Birds & Their Habitats in Kansas [mailto:KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU] On
Behalf Of John Schukman
Sent: Sunday, December 30, 2018 8:53 PM
To: KSBIRD-L AT LISTSERV.KSU.EDU
Subject: Leavenworth/Atchison CBC

Nine of us in 5 parties found 76 species (unofficial) yesterday for the
LV/AT count. Best birds were Peregrine Falcon, Merlin, Eastern Towhee,
Brewer's Blackbird, Pine Siskin, and 17 species of waterfowl.



John Schukman


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Subject: Marion CBC
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 21:26 pm
From: ewert.tom AT gmail.com
 
Hi Folks,
We had 8 counters on 4 teams and 1 feeder watcher yesterday in Marion
County for the CBC. We had 79 species on the day so a bit better than our 7
year average of 77. No zooties seen but we did have 4 prairie falcons and 1
merlin, and 12 greater prairie chickens. Duck and goose numbers were way
down even though the reservoir and lake were both mostly ice-free. Bald
Eagle numbers were way up, with more than 60 counted on the day, although
there was probably some double counting, since they do fly around.
The big orange crane at the dam spillway was not countable. Not sure how
long the dam road will be closed off but they have a huge pile of rocks
below the dam on the west side. Access to both sides below the dam is also
blocked.
The morning started with temps at 17 and day ended at 28 so cold to be out
but the wind was cooperative. Good day to be out with friends.

Tom Ewert
Wichita


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Subject: Leavenworth/Atchison CBC
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 20:53 pm
From: schuksaya AT kc.rr.com
 
Nine of us in 5 parties found 76 species (unofficial) yesterday for the
LV/AT count. Best birds were Peregrine Falcon, Merlin, Eastern Towhee,
Brewer's Blackbird, Pine Siskin, and 17 species of waterfowl.



John Schukman


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Subject: Olathe CBC
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 20:42 pm
From: kvbutler AT sbcglobal.net
 
Great reporting!
Jean Butler

Sent from my iPhone

> On Dec 30, 2018, at 7:22 PM, Jeff Witters wrote:
>
> Yesterday the Olathe CBC was run with 21 volunteers on a cold, gray day notable mostly for the lower numbers of species and total birds. Walking 31 miles and driving 173 miles, our seven teams found 73 species and 9024 birds. Of those, almost 1/3 of the individuals were high flyover Snow Geese going due south, clearly with a better plan than the cold humans counting them from below. There were few outright no-shows, but 20 of the species only tallied three or fewer individuals, 7 species made it on the board with just a single bird observed. Our count circle area is more than half suburbs and intensive urban development, so we stick to major parks mostly. Only two teams did road cruising in the less-developed western half. Thus our 30 House Sparrows, 99 pigeons, and 56 House Finches are likely severe undercounts by orders of magnitude.
>
> Despite the very slow birding, it was a good day. In one group, a couple complete novices got to see a Screech Owl flying a dawn and then later watched a Sharpie take a Downy right at their feet, possibly risking unrealistic expectations for the rest of their winter birding.
>
> Jeff Witters
> JO Co
>
> Sent from my iPhone
> For KSBIRD-L archives or to change your subscription options, go to
> https://listserv.ksu.edu/ksbir...
> For KSBIRD-L guidelines go to
> http://www.ksbirds.org/KSBIRD-...
> To contact a listowner, send a message to
> mailto:[email protected]

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Subject: Red Hills CBC results
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 19:53 pm
From: pete.janzen AT sbcglobal.net
 
The Red Hills CBC was conducted yesterday. We had 11 people in four
parties. The total number of species was 85. The 26 year average for
this count is 78 species. With all of the recent rains there was more
standing water than in any other count we have had. Also unlike many
years, most water was open so waterfowl were well represented. Most
notably a possible Pacific Wren was heard but not seen at Barber STate
Fishing Lake. A recording of the calls was obtained. The jury is still
out on this one.

The following species were seen that have been recorded on less than 25%
of all previous Red Hills counts: Wood Duck, Blue-winged Teal, N.
Shoveler, Canvasback, Lesser Scaup, Common Merganser, American Coot,
Killdeer and Ring-billed Gull

The following species were not seen that have been recorded on at least
75% of previous Red Hills counts, so these are offical "misses": N.
Bobwhite, Sharp-shinned Hawk, Rough-legged Hawk, Belted Kingfisher,
Merlin, Prairie Falcon, Horned Lark, Ruby-crowned Kinglet and
Brown-headed Cowbird.

It was a down year for Mountain Bluebirds with less that 80 reported.
The large flocks of wintering Sandhill Cranes in Barber County should be
considered a regularly occurring population. The nearly 3500 reported
yesterday were actually somewhat low. Over 12,000 have been reported in
several recent years on this count. Red-tailed Hawk, N. Harrier and Am.
Kestrel numbers were about average. Most sparrow species were also in
average numbers. One interesting thing was that most parties reported
actual small flocks of Field Sparrows. I think of this species in
winter as a bit of a straggler with single birds seen with other sparrow
species. But this year they were more numerous and gregarious. Pileated
Woodpecker seems to be established as a resident species along the
Medicine River at least as far upstream as Medicine Lodge. If you have
not visited the area recently, the extent of the camapign to remove
Eastern Red Cedars from large expanses of range land will surprise you.
Between the big fire from several years ago and the ongoing cedar
removal it is really a changed landscape.

--
Pete Janzen Wichita, KS [email protected]

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Subject: Olathe CBC
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 19:23 pm
From: bioguy.witters AT gmail.com
 
Yesterday the Olathe CBC was run with 21 volunteers on a cold, gray day notable mostly for the lower numbers of species and total birds. Walking 31 miles and driving 173 miles, our seven teams found 73 species and 9024 birds. Of those, almost 1/3 of the individuals were high flyover Snow Geese going due south, clearly with a better plan than the cold humans counting them from below. There were few outright no-shows, but 20 of the species only tallied three or fewer individuals, 7 species made it on the board with just a single bird observed. Our count circle area is more than half suburbs and intensive urban development, so we stick to major parks mostly. Only two teams did road cruising in the less-developed western half. Thus our 30 House Sparrows, 99 pigeons, and 56 House Finches are likely severe undercounts by orders of magnitude. 

Despite the very slow birding, it was a good day. In one group, a couple complete novices got to see a Screech Owl flying a dawn and then later watched a Sharpie take a Downy right at their feet, possibly risking unrealistic expectations for the rest of their winter birding.

Jeff Witters
JO Co

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Subject: Are Buteo hybrids possible ?
Date: Sun Dec 30 2018 15:09 pm
From: James.Nickel AT bnsf.com
 
I have been seeing an odd looking hawk close to my house.It is a Buteo. The breast looks like the barring of a Red-shouldered Hawk. The belly is much darker and looks more like a Rough-legged Hawk. I thought it was a Rough-legged Hawk at first, but then it flushed and I saw a red tail. I know Red-tailed hawks are highly variable, and that is what the bird probably is. My question is: have Buteo hybrids been seen in Kansas and what would be the odds of seeing one? Jim Nickel Peabody, Kansas 

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