North American Birds

VOLUME 70 NO2 2018

A Quarterly Journal of Ornithological Record Published by the American Birding Association. The mission of the journal is to provide a complete overview of the changing panorama of our continent’s birdlife.

Issue link: http://nab.aba.org/i/1028840

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N O R T H A M E R I C A N B I R D S 186 13 Feb (GLV). The Trumpeter Swan high count in w. MO was represented by 518 at Squaw Creek N.W.R. Holt, MO 12 Dec (MR); numbers also reached 547 at Riverlands Migratory B.S., St. Charles, MO 25 Jan (JM, CM). There were 135 reports of the species throug IA that includ - ed a high of 140 at Beemer's Pond, Hamilton, IA 13 Dec (SJD) and 156 at Maffitt Res., Dallas, IA 2 Jan (JG). The IA high count for Tundra Swan was 9000 in Allamakee, IA 6 Dec (KB); the MO high was 58 at Riverlands Migratory B.S., St. Charles, MO 23 Jan (CM, JM). Rare in n. MO, 6 Wood Ducks were found at Smithville Lake, Clay, MO 19 Jan (CE). A tardy Wood Duck was detected at Green Island W.M.A., Jackson, IA 18 Dec (KJM). Gadwall reached a new high with 15,000 found during the C.B.C. at Clarence Cannon N.W.R., Pike, MO 21 Dec (BR, DP). Gadwall was reported throughout the period in IA, with high counts of 107 at John Deere Dike, Dubuque 22 Dec (DAS); 68 at Big Creek S.P., Polk 18 Jan (AB); 235 at Cone Marsh, Louisa, IA 28 Feb (POR). A Eur - asian Wigeon at Clarence Cannon N.W.R., Pike, MO 20 Feb+ (TB, DR, JM) furnished a first MO winter record and represented the tenth state record overall. The highest count for Northern Pintail was 12,000 at Cone Marsh, Louisa, IA 28 Feb (POR). Green-winged Teal, rare in n. MO, remained in good numbers at Squaw Creek N.W.R., Holt, MO with a peak count of 300 tal - lied 2 Dec (JH). The species also checked in with a high count of 450 at Cone Marsh, Louisa, IA 28 Feb (POR). Notable Aythya totals included 21,000 Canvasbacks in Allamakee, IA 6 Dec (KB); 1300 Ring-necked Ducks in Allamakee, IA (KB); 97 Greater Scaup at Pool 19 on the Mis - sissippi R. in Lee, IA 18 Dec (SJD); 5000 Lesser Scaup on the Mississippi R. in Allamakee, IA 6 Dec (KB). A Harlequin Duck was again present this winter in IA, on the Des Moines R. at Ot - tumwa, Wapello 5 Feb (TNJ, MSt, VSt). All three scoter species were found in both states this season. A Surf Scoter was found at Clear Lake, Cerro Gordo, IA 1-8 Dec (BVL), while additional singles were at Perry County Community Lake, Perry, MO 2-16 Dec (RF); Chapman Farms Lake, Jackson, MO 30 Dec (MB); Riverlands Migratory B.S., St. Charles, MO 27 Dec (CMc, AR). White- winged Scoter reports included singles observed at Riverlands Migratory B.S., St. Charles, MO 5 Dec (GA); George Wyth S.P., Black Hawk, IA 6-25 Dec (DGE); Pool 19 on the Mississippi R. in Lee, IA 7 Jan (JLF). There was a Black Scoter at Riverlands Migratory B.S., St. Charles, MO 1 Dec (SM, DM) with additional singles at Clear Lake, Cerro Gordo, IA (BVL) and West Okoboji Lake, Dickinson, IA (LAS), both 6 Dec. Various diving duck high counts included 300 Buffle - head on the Mississippi R. in Allamakee, IA 6 Dec (KB); 15,022 Common Goldeneye on the average. The warm temperatures were also ac - companied by unprecedented late-December flooding that shut portions of I-70, I-55 and I-44. Average statewide rainfall was 7.37 inches, more than 5 inches above average, and closed out the fourth-wettest year on record. Precipita - tion moderated in January, ending a little more than an inch below the normal rainfall average. Average temperatures were a little less than a de - gree above normal for the month. Snow finally started to fall during 9 January, but not without once again breaking a record: the city of Colum - bia, Missouri broke a 126-year-old record for the latest first measurable snowfall. Temperatures started to dip near or below zero in the northern half of the state 9-13 January and again 16-19 January. February saw average temperatures rise to 4ºF above normal, while precipitation stayed low and averaged an inch below normal. East and east-central Missouri saw the only signifi - cant snowfall. Perhaps the most notable impact associated with the mild, dry weather was seen in numerous grass fires that broke out across the state. Waterfowl benefitted from increased open water as a result of the mild temperatures, in - cluding the tenth state-record Eurasian Wigeon at Clarence Cannon National Wildlife Refuge. Iowa season highlights included Harlequin Duck, Great Black-backed Gull, Say's Phoebe, and Pine Grosbeak. Highlights in Missouri in - cluded Cattle Egret, Swainson's Hawk, Ferrugi- nous Hawk, Say's Phoebe, Lazuli Bunting, and Indigo Bunting. Abbreviations: B.S. (Bird Sanctuary) WATERFOWL The highest Greater White-fronted Goose totals included 5000 at Cone Marsh, Louisa, IA 26 Feb (FB); 5000 at Snyder Bend Park, Woodbury, IA 27 Feb (GLV); 5000+ at the Maryville sew - age lagoons, Nodaway, MO 17 Feb (DE); 2900 at Loess Bluffs N.W.R., Holt, MO 6 Dec (CH, MR). The 750,000 Snow Geese found during the C.B.C. at Squaw Creek N.W.R., Holt, MO 18 Dec (AG, JC) represented a season high count for the refuge. Other notable Snow Goose fig - ures included 400,000 at Riverton W.M.A., Fre- mont, IA 20 Feb (POR) and 400,000 the same day at Forney Lake, Fremont, IA (POR). Notable Ross's Goose counts included a high of 54 at Red Rock Res., Marion, IA 21 Feb (AB) and 42 at Whitebreast R.A., Red Rock Res., Marion, IA 23 Feb (AB). Cackling Goose reports included a high of 200 at MidAmerican Energy Ponds, Pot - tawattamie, IA 11 Feb (MS) and 200 in Louisa, IA 21 Feb (GM). Cackling Goose is rare in e. MO, where the season high of 7 was secured at Riverlands Migratory B.S., Holt 16 Jan (BR). The highest Canada Goose total was 15,000 along the Missouri R. south of Sioux City Woodbury, IA Francis Moore –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– I n Iowa, this winter season featured tem- peratures above normal in December and February, and temperatures below normal in January. Precipitation was below average during December and above average during the last two months of the season. Precipitation totals were nearly double the seasonable norm, and ranked as the wettest and seventeenth-warmest winter in 143 years of recordkeeping. Despite slightly below-average precipitation in Janu - ary and February, these two months brought enough precipitation, especially when com - bined with December's record total, to easily surpass the 1914-1915 winter as wettest on record. A number of waterfowl reports were logged during December and January, though the majority occurred during February as mi - gration got underway. The highest waterfowl numbers were noted after 18 February. Num - bers of most gallinaceous bird were still on the low side, with only Wild Turkey reported in av - erage or above-average totals. Only two reports of Northern Bobwhite were at odds with other surveys that indicate this species is doing well in Iowa. There were multiple late-winter reports of Turkey Vulture, beginning 20 February. Gull re - ports were widespread across all three months. Snowy Owls were found in normal numbers again this season and there were good numbers of Northern Saw-whet Owls at usual locations. Merlin were widely reported but only a few Per - egrine and Prairie falcons were noted. Winter finch numbers were up from the previous year, with reports of both crossbill species along with good numbers of Common Redpolls and Pine Siskins. Eurasian Tree Sparrows continue to ex - pand their range with singles found in Cedar, Lucas and Black Hawk counties in Iowa. In Missouri, December was the warmest since recordkeeping commenced in 1895, and the month checked in 9ºF above the long-term Iowa & Missouri

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