Monday, May 28, 2018

From Snow to the Sand

Sorry I'm being such a busy poster, while I have internet and time in the evenings it's convenient for me, my time here is short so if I'm unable to post the next couple weeks as my travels continue maybe I won't fall far behind with my chronicles, so in continuance of the 3 day and 2 night camp trip here we go.   

Stunning scenery along the way...

Saturday Apr 19th.  Since the Southern side of the road off the Grand Mesa travels right through Orchard City I wanted to see if any new birds were at the Fruitgrower's Reservoir.  The big lake had a few Western Grebes, Canada Geese, and a couple of Bullock's Orioles.

Up on the north causeway there was a bit more to see.  

The shorebirds I had hoped for were not there but still some good things to see.  Most of the Ducks and Geese hung across the lake on the far bank....but this pair of Western Grebes were so busy adoring each other they forgot to move away from me...

Keep hoping for a Clark's to be in one of these flocks....only one Long Billed Dowitcher was poking around...

...along with 3 Spotted Sandpipers was this young Ring Billed Gull...

And a California Gull

Check out the size difference between these White Pelicans and the tiny Pied Billed Grebe...just to the left of the pair. 

I took a walk closer to the marsh where the Yellow Headed Blackbirds stood out so brilliantly!

  A short video. 


And Western Meadowlarks  my favorite Country & Western Singer. 

The plan was to return to my sis's house by evening and I had one more stop planned and it was a bit of a drive so I made my way toward & then about 11 miles west of Grand Junction.  Since I was pretty close I wanted to revisit
2 and 8/10 road near the settlement of Mack...where I was about a week ago near the McInnis Canyon area.  I arrived there about 3 pm.  

I know this does NOT look like much, but it was my destination!  

Just a fence in the desert right? But look closer!!  Count from right to left 11 fence posts down...

Finally!!! I get to add the Burrowing Owl to my life list! 

AND he is a real beauty...what a treat. Look at those eyes!


He flew off the post and back a couple times, and then eventually to a prairie dog mound, and he got out of camera range.  I was able to watch him for about 20 minutes and then I left him to do his thing.   Been trying to see this bird for a long time! My Owl list has been hurting for a while because I was not my goal is to add more by working harder at finding them. 

 I've seen only 7 of the 19 possible in North America.  I had high hopes of the Boreal Owl up on the Mesa, also the Northern Pygmy, and the Northern Saw Whet  and of course the Western Screech.  They are there but I was not able to spot one.  It just means I have to try again and try harder.  

I had a great camping trip and this was the perfect end I added 3 new birds to my life list...and an unlimited amount of wonderful experiences. 

Every day is a new Adventure.


  1. Yay!! Those burrowing owls are so nice since they are not nocturnal -- that means even old ladies like me can find them (actually I can't believe I didn't post any of our Cape Coral burrowing owl colony this season). It was a great trip for you -- all those birds, three lifers! You are the best birder I know.
    And post as often as you want; as long as you don't mind me commenting on more than one post like I do sometimes when I get behind reading. I never want to miss any of your posts and they are always worth a comment!!

    1. Finally I got one! I felt so left out of the birder's
      Thank you for those kind words! I am totally just a hacker at birding, but I sure do enjoy it!

  2. It is high praise indeed if Sallie thinks you are the best birder she knows. The courtship dances of Western Grebes are among the very greatest of natural spectacles.

    1. Saw a pair doing the dance on the water at the main lake but it was in progress when I drove up so no documentation except in my memory banks I really want to see a youngster riding on Mom's back!

  3. Love all the birds you found and I am sure happy you found your borrowing owl. That made you so happy. They have beautiful coloring and markings. If it weren't for you I would never see half the birds you find and share with us.

    1. Thank Jo, it was another bird I kept just not finding, but on the day I decided to make the 60 miles detour (two-way)I told myself,
      "you're going to see it today" and gosh darn if I didn't!

  4. Oh yay congrats on the Burrowing Owl!! Here's hoping you find the rest of your target species this year!

    1. Thanks Jen, I have high hopes, if I don't it won't be from lack of trying!

  5. Some great shots here especially I like the Burrowing Owl, the Yellow Headed Blackbird and the Grebes. The Grebes are so graceful and their courtship dance is amazing. I saw a couple on Loch Lomond but didn't get a shot.
    Keep the posts coming, I love them and miss them when you're not able to post.

  6. HI Dave...I'm looking forward to hearing all about your time away. I bet you saw some splendid sights, and had some great rides!

  7. Oh, Sondra, your trips are so drool worthy. That owl! Oh, my!

    1. I worked hard for this owl he sure was worth it!


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