Good Day Birding in Macomb County

My day started off with showing my friend Geoff where the Snowy Owl was in Northern Macomb County…. It was in the same location as the earlier post, just sitting on the ground…. We then headed to another location on a tip from Kevin Rysiewski (via Tom Heatley) on some Lapland Longspurs… We went to the location and found Eric Domurat there looking for them…. We eventually sighted them and I was able to snap some photos…. we counted 12 at first, but after Eric and Geoff left, I sat quietly hoping to get some close up shots and another 8 or so birds arrived… I then headed to Lake St. Clair Metropark in search of the Rough-legged Hawk that has been hanging out in the North Marsh… I found it right away, but it was not making it easy for me to photograph it… They like to hunt out in the middle of the marsh… its characteristic hovering seen from a distance… I made my way out into the marsh which was mostly frozen and ran into Will Mchale… We watched the Rough-legged Hawks (there were two) and a couple of Northern Harriers that were zooming around the marsh… I also found an Immature Coopers Hawk along Venetian Rd….

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspur

Northern Harrier

Northern Harrier

Northern Harrier carrying what looks like nesting material

Northern Harrier carrying what looks like nesting material, but is more likely prey entangled in grass..

Rough-legged Hawk

Rough-legged Hawk

Rough-legged Hawk

Rough-legged Hawk

Rough-legged Hawk

Rough-legged Hawk

Juvenile Coopers Hawk

 

 

Snowy Owl – Macomb County

I received a call from Kevin Rysiewski today that he and Dave Boon had found the Snowy Owl at 34 mi rd and Lone Plank Rd that we had all been trying to locate for a couple of days… I headed that way and found them and Will McHale near the location where the owl was sitting on a pole in the middle of the farm field…. We had permission to get closer so Will and I slowly stalked it and got some great shots and then it flew to a pole along the rd…. we made our way over to that location and with the sun setting on our back, we grabbed a few more shots before it became to dark…. This is the 222 bird of the year for me in Macomb County…

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl barfing up a Pellet

Snowy Owl barfing up a Pellet

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl

Sun setting behind me while photographing the Snowy Owl

Sun setting behind me while photographing the Snowy Owl

 

Snow Buntings – Teller Rd Macomb County

There was a report of 30 Snow Buntings and no Horned Larks in this years Macomb Audubon Christmas Count… In fact, no one one the whole count had Horned Larks… I headed to Broughton Rd and Teller Rd today between 26 and 28 mi rd…. I wanted to see the Snow Buntings… Low and behold there were 40+ Horned Larks in the field on the NW corner Teller and 27 mi…. The Snow Buntings were easy to locate and they were joined by another flock around 2 pm and the group swelled to over 100+ birds… They stayed mostly on the back part of the farm fields but once in awhile they would head for the road and I managed to get some close ups…. they are my favorite winter bird…..

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Buntings

Snow Buntings

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Macomb Audubon Christmas Count 12-14-13

Yesterday I had the opportunity to participate in the Macomb Audubon Christmas Count… This year I tagged along with Joanna Pease, Alan Ryff and Vikki Jones as we covered the Wolcott Mills Metropark area… Of course the count occured on the first big snow storm of the year and this made birding difficult… Our team had 31 species for the day highlighted by a Northern Harrier at 30 mi , west of Kuntsman Rd… We also had 3 Swamp Sparrows north of 28 mile and Teller… At first light we managed to get 7 Eastern Screech Owls to answer our call… Very Cool…. Joanna and Alan had to leave around 2pm and I headed over to Wolcott Mills Metropark to walk the trails and managed to find a Belted Kingfisher and the second pair of Northern Flickers for the day..   The day ended with a Talley at Stony Creek Metropark Nature Center….. Great time as always, and I especially enjoyed the company I was with this year…. Great Birders with a wealth of knowledge…