Birdnet Hotline Highlights
Compiled by Eric Huish

September 2003

Review Species Reported This Month:
Reddish Egret Tooele Co. Washington Co.
Eurasian Collared-Dove Beaver Co.
Vaux's Swift Washington Co.
Anna's Hummingbirds Washington Co.
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Tooele Co. Washington Co.
Northern Parula Millard Co.
  Blackburnian Warbler Washington Co.
  Blackpoll Warbler Box Elder Co.
  Hooded Warbler Weber Co.
  Dickcissel Washington Co.


Rick Fridell (25 Sept 2003) - ...Our next stop was in Minersville where we saw nine Eurasian Collared-Doves and a huge flock of 150+ Pinyon Jays. We spent what little remained of the daylight at Minersville Reservoir, and were surprised to see a flock of 5-10 Gambel's Quail going to roost in an old Magpie nest near the north end of the campground.

Rick Fridell - On 9/27 we had a Winter Wren in our camp at Pine Grove.  We met Steve and Priscilla Summers and visited the Wah Wah Valley Ranch (Beaver County; this is a private ranch and permission is required).  Highlights included a Blue-winged Teal, Slate-colored Fox Sparrow, and a Grasshopper Sparrow.


Pomera Fronce (13 Sept 2003) - Julie, Kent and I headed out on Friday... We hadn't driven but a couple of miles into White's Valley when a covey of about 15 Gray Partridge ran across the road right in front of us. Just before we got to the area with the two silos, we woke up a Burrowing Owl that showed his agitation by alternately bobbing and barking. Near the silos, we saw maybe a dozen Sharp-tailed Grouse flushed by the coursing of the Northern Harriers. On the way out, we saw another large covey of partridge.
Lucin... did not yield many birds, but... we found a Winter Wren and a Long-eared Owl.

Julie Van Moorhem (9 Sept 2003) - I went to Willard Bay campground today to look for Common Tern and got lucky. They were just west of the marina (which has virtually no water) on a small rocky island. There were about 5 of them and the carpal bar was noticeable. Also saw a couple of Wilson's Warblers, a Nashville Warbler, a lot of Yellow-rumped Warblers, and two Gray Catbirds.

David Wheeler (6 Sept 2003) - Blackpoll Warbler: Box Elder Campground, next to Mantua. It was an immature individual working the tall willows near the creek toward the lower part of the lower loop. It seemed less frenetic than some of the other birds nearby and stayed low in the trees, thus allowing extended views over many minutes.
Black & White Warbler: Mantua Reservoir, near where the creek enters at the eastern (?) corner just before the perimeter road is gated off when one heads counter-clockwise around the reservoir. This was a female/immature male.

Bruce Robinson (6 Sept 2003) - Lynn and I stopped at BRMBR ...Along the north side of the auto tour were 2 Great Egrets and quite a few Franklin Gulls.... along the canal on the eastern part of the auto tour. ... we found Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs..., and Solitary Sandpipers.


David Wheeler (6 Sept 2003) - White-winged Crossbill:  Tony Grove Lake in Logan Canyon.  A small flock (about 10) of males & females, with clear white & black wing bars flew through the area, pausing here and there on top of tall firs/spruces.


(30 Sept 2003) - A Black-and-white Warbler was reported at Garr Ranch on Antelope Island. Dave Abbott and is wife saw the bird at about 11:30 this morning (Tuesday) in a large Russian Olive tree on the fence line south of a brush pile in the field south of the spring pond area.
Also Glenn Barlow and Pomera Fronce saw one of the Sabine's Gulls north of the Antelope Island causeway between mile markers 4 and 5.

Joel & Kathy Beyer (28 Sept 2003) - This morning we saw 2 Sabine's Gulls on the north side of the Antelope Island Causeway, near mile marker 4. Further east along the Causeway were hundreds of dowitchers (presumably Long-billed) and about 30 Black-bellied Plovers. Just west of mile marker 1, on the south side, were 7 Long-billed Curlews.

Alton Thygerson (28 Sept 2003) - After seeing the report that Bob Bradley and Tony Jones had seen a Sabine's Gull, I convinced my wife that a quick afternoon trip to the Antelope Island Causeway was justified. Fortunately, at mile marker #4, the gull flew by. The wing configuration was its ID.

Bob Bradley (28 Sept 2003) - Tony Jones and I birded Antelope Island today. On the causeway, we had very good looks at the Sabine's Gull. It is an adult still in breeding plumage. The bird was observed in the North side of the causeway between mile markers 1 and 2 on both our way to Garr Ranch and on the way back. It flew after a few minutes and the classic wing pattern was clear.

(21 Sept 2003) - Ross Rassmussen, birding along the Antelope Island Causeway observed a Sabine's Gull. He observed it just before mile marker 4, flying North by Northeast from approximately 500 meters until it flew out of sight. The bird was in view for approximately 25 minutes, coursing along the area. Ross said that the bird exhibited the classic wing pattern with white wedge. The white tail with black terminal band was also observed.


(25 Sept 2003) - Merrill Webb reported two Merlins today (one dark and one light race).  One was just south of the Utah Lake State Park in Provo and the other was at Mona Reservoir (north of Nephi).  He also saw a female Wood Duck at Burriston ponds just south of Mona.


Pomera Fronce (14 Sept 2003) - Dana, Julie and I birded Kaufman Ranch today with the prize bird being a Northern Parula. Other birds of interest were a Short-eared Owl, Ring-necked Duck, Yellow-breasted Chat, MacGillivray's Warblers, lots of beautifully colored Nashville Warblers, Wilson's Warblers and one Townsend's Warbler. We saw roughly 35 species on the ranch during our three hours of birding.


Tuula Rose - Target birding on Saturday (9.27.03, 9:20 am) by eight Utah County Birders produced a lifer for seven of us... We drove up to Brighton, parked on the loop road next to the church and found a group of White-Winged Crossbills in the tops of the  tall spruces in about five minutes or as long as it took to point the scopes up there. Almost too easy. Thanks go to those who reported seeing them up at Brighton.

Alton Thygerson (18 Sept 20003) - After seeing Tony Jones' report and the reports from others before his, I went looking for the White-winged Crossbill today at Silver Lake/Brighton. I had two sightings. The first sighting was west of the Silver Lake boardwalk, past the bridge, in the top of the spruce trees, and with several Red Crossbills. I got a better look later while parked near a bed & breakfast place with a large "for sale" sign on the north part of the Brighton Ski Resort loop road. The bird was seen south in a tree top after which it flew off in a southeast direction...

Tony Jones (6 Sept 2003) - Today at about 10:30-12:30, Bob Bradley and I went to Brighton to look at the Crossbills again. Bob went Friday morning also. He saw a White-winged Crossbill along with another Red Crossbill. We started the trail at the boardwalk at Brighton. We did see a number of Red Crossbills. I saw for about 5-10 seconds a bird with white wing bars. I am always a bit skeptical due to the variants that are shown in all the books regarding Red Crossbills with white wing bars. The bird I saw had wing bars. The first bar being pretty distinct. Given the other sightings from others in the recent past, I believe there is a white-winged Crossbill at the site. We could not relocate it after it flew. We saw a juvenile Goshawk too.

Deedee and Dick O'Brien (5 Sept 2003) - ...retuned in mid-August to find the Band-tailed Pigeons were no longer reliably coming into the yard. But now 8 or so of them put in appearances every afternoon. No guarantees, of course, about exact timing but between noon and 4:30 seems good. The larger numbers most often come around 2:00 or 3:00 o'clock, and sometimes just hang out. [in Holladay]


Tim Gorman (10 Sept 2003) - Just got back from my annual hike up the Henry's Fork to the King's Peak area in the Uinta Mountains in search of White-tailed Ptarmigan. 26 Ptarmigan were seen in three days. The flock looks as good as last year (23 were seen). Approximately half of the birds appeared to be young of the year. The birds are about 50% white.... Also a small flock of beautiful Townsend's Warblers were seen on the trail 3 1/2 miles from the Henry's Fork trailhead. Some other birds of note from the hike: Northern Goshawk, Semipalmated Plover, Three-toed Woodpecker, and Black Rosy-Finch


Carol Gwynn (9 Sept 2003) - ...the Reddish Egret again. Glen and Donna Thorum and Carol Gwynn made the trek out to J.W. Fitzgerald WMA in Tooele County this afternoon to see this bird. It was still there, and the Great Egret was also back.

Eric Huish (8 Sept 2003) - There was a Northern Waterthrush at Clover Springs under the first fallen tree down from the spring. There was lots of bird activity around the spring and many sparrows and warblers in the field of rabbit brush bellow the camping area.  The Reddish Egret is still at JWFWMA.

Jack Binch (5 Sept 2003) - I have regretted not going to Gunlock Res. for the past month. Thanks to Milton and Merrill, I don't have to any more. The Reddish Egret was still at J. W. Firzgerald WMA this morning at 8:00. 

Eric Huish (4 Sept 2003) - KC, Alton and I ran out to Tooele County this morning. The Reddish Egret is still at James Walter Fitzgerald WMA with a Great Egret. We could not relocate the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.

Milton Moody (3 Sept 2003) - Merrill Webb and I were going to Harker Canyon in Tooele County today and decided to stop by at James Walter Fitzgerald WMA to see what was there. We saw a juvenile Reddish Egret (amazingly enough), very similar to the one at Gunlock Reservoir. (Is that one still there? We're pretty sure it's a different individual). There were also Red-necked Phalaropes and Baird's and Western Sandpiper, and a bunch of pelicans.
We then went to Harker Canyon (south of Vernon in the Sheeprock Mountains), and, (amazingly enough) we saw a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. We got some good looks at it but couldn't get any photos despite a pretty good effort


KC Childs (9 Sept 2003) - I ran down to Utah Lake State Park this morning to check out the shorebirds. On the south dike at the State Park there were many Pectoral Sandpipers, Solitary Sandpiper, Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs, Marbled Godwits, Western, Semipalmated and Baird's Sandpipers and others as well.

Ed (4 Sept 2003) - The Green Herons are still out at the Provo Airport dike it was a lifer for me. I have been chasing the little boogers for a while now. The were in that large tree where the road turns west (away) from the ponds.


Rick Fridell - We left after work on Thursday (9/25) and our first good bird was a Common Tern at Quail Creek State Park.

Alton Thygerson (28 Sept 2003) - After a night in St. George, I birded Red Cliffs Campground where a Downy Woodpecker and Red-naped Sapsucker were seen, but best of all a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.

Larry Tripp (24 Sept 2003) - Tonight at about 7:00 PM there was a Red-eyed Vireo at Red Hills G.C. It was in the upper area but way last seen flying towards the club house. Other than White-crowned Sparrows there wasn't many other birds there.

Charlie Sheard (21 Sept 2001) - The Anna's Hummingbirds in Leeds are alive and well! After a few cameo appearances this summer and the departure of the Rufus ruffians, several immature Anna's and an adult female or two are once again frequenting the feeders. One immature male is trying real hard to molt into his adult plumage. A pretty scruffy looking little bird that is best identified by his determined singing.

Rick Fridell - This evening (9/18 @ 6:20 pm) I observed three Common Terns at Quail Creek State Park... The terns were perched on rocks on the small island at the north end of the Reservoir.

Larry Tripp (17 Sept 2003) - Tonight after work I went to a friends home in Gunlock (who isn't a birder) and in the orchard behind his house there was a male Vermilion Flycatcher. He told me that he has saw it there recently. So I guess it has been in the area.

Charlie Sheard (9 Sept 2003) - Today, Tuesday, I counted roughly 40 Terns at Sand Hollow. Most of them were Forster's, but the count included 2 Common, 4 Black and 3 Caspian. The Common Terns were with a large, mixed flock of Am. Avocets and Black-necked Stilts located on the West shore.

Larry Tripp (7 Sept 2003) - I had a very nice day of Fall birding today in Washington Co. This morning above Gunlock I had a Tennessee Warbler and a Vaux's Swift. And on the Res. there was a beautifully marked juvenile Sabine's Gull. In the afternoon Rick and I went back over there and the Sabine's was still there but we were unable to relocate the Tennessee or the Vaux's.  One of the'' Reddish Egret's'' was also still there.

Merrill Webb (6 Sept 2003) - Late Saturday evening, I saw three Pectoral Sandpipers in the marsh area at the corner of 2350 South 3000 East in the St. George portion of the Washington fields.

Bill - Dixie Willie (5 Sept 2003) - Blackburnian Warbler.  SunRiver St. George.  No use to come a runnin' as it's passed on through. This is proving to be an exciting fall for migrants.

Larry Tripp (5 Sept 2003) - If someone had told me a month ago that we would have two Reddish Egrets in the state this fall ( at the same time ) I would have thought that they were dreaming. There is still a bird at Gunlock. Sometimes that first bird is hard to get and then they seem to show up everywhere.

Alton Thygerson (1 Sept 2003) - While Merrill Webb and I were looking at the Reddish Egret at Gunlock Reservoir and after unsuccessfully searching for the Red-shouldered Hawk, Larry Tripp pulled up. We were fortunate because he asked if we had seen the Dickcissel at Lytle Ranch posting. So, we (Merrill, Larry, and I) set out for Lytle Ranch. Larry had found it and Rick Fridell had reported it on the bird hotline. Merrill says this may be only the third report of the bird in Utah. An easy way to identify this particular bird is to look for one without a tail--Dickcissels have tails but for some unknown reason, this one doesn't.


(14 Sept 2003) - Aaron Smith reported a female Hooded Warbler that responded to pishing on the South end of the loop trail at the North Arm of Pineview Reservoir. The location where he saw the warbler is where a tree has fallen onto a bench.