Day 6 - A Clairvoyant Told Me So

Wednesday, January 06, 2016 0 Comments A+ a-

I'm not overly superstitious.  I've never had my fortune told, I don't read horoscopes, and I think "Mediums" are out of their minds... Sorry to any mediums reading this.  Occasionally I will check the same spot at the same time of year each year because a certain bird might be there.  This isn't anything super-natural; it's natural in fact.  If a Great Horned Owl for instance uses a roost one year, there is a high probability it will use the same next year.  Odds and chance along with patterns make birds some what predictable.  Today a little bird in my head told me to look for 3 birds that wouldn't take more than an hour.  So I obliged.

Today's targets were two birds that often frequent the ponds behind a local shop and I figured this would be an easy way to keep my "No-Zero" streak alive.

But the ponds were void of almost any birds.  No waterfowl, no songbirds, no waders, shorebirds, etc.  There were a small group of American Coots bobbing around, and several Variegated Dashers moved about with ease.  But that was it.  So I moved on.  I knew of another body of water close and thought to check it, but there were slim pickings there.  A pair of Compass Stripes were the best birds.  That left one species I thought I could check for, and after spending 15 minutes trying to find said Maniac (maniacs are a family of new world song birds) I moved on and was 0 for 3.  Desperation sank in.

I headed to a nearby park along a river where I thought I might be able to find an American Patriot.  This is a freebie folks--it's January, and I called a bird an American Patriot.  You can put two and two together and figure this one out.  After driving the perimeter of the park and checking every snag, limb, pole, and possible perch I shrugged to leave.  I stopped at a patch of trees and pished to see if anything would come to the edge. But it wasn't meant to be.  I started to drive off and caught a shape in the tangle! Great Horned Owl! And just like that my ZERO day turned into a plus one!

The owl was deep in the trees and would have been unseen unless you were looking closely.  With a new found burst of positive feelings I started to head back from my outing.  I found a flock of Marauders. I scanned them to look for anything out of place.  I stopped as a slightly smaller bird popped out from the group.  I stared for a second looking over its features; it was a juvenile Thin-billed Marauder!  This species is never guaranteed year in and out so it was a relief to find one now and not have to worry about it later

I was now satisfied with my two newbies and headed home when I caught a shape on a distant power pole. I slammed on my breaks--Clairvoyant! The shape was obvious and it looked to be feasting.  I flipped around and drove to a better vantage point then got it in my glasses. Success!  Ironically as the Clairvoyant flies this was about 2/3 of a mile from where I had my false-Clairvoyant yesterday.  I have seen them numerous times here in the past so I shouldn't have been all that surprised. A valid food source, the right habitat, and a usual place were the right mix of natural things to nail down this stunning bird.

New birds today: 3
Year List: 66


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