First week in March 2012
Near Flaming Gorge
Daggitt County, Utah
(E-mails from Casey Day, 11 Mar 2012)
Matt Westover, Suzanne Dunken and I spent
a few days on the Green River up near Flaming Gorge the first week of
March and I thought I would give an account of some of the bird highlights
On the river, CLARK'S NUTCRACKERS and AMERICAN DIPPERS were plentiful.
Ducks were also plentiful, as we saw several flocks of COMMON GOLDENEYE,
several pairs of COMMON MERGANSERS, and one pair of flyover RED-BREASTED
MERGANSERS. Several BALD EAGLES were still around, as well as a pair of
GOLDEN EAGLES seen soaring above C Section of the Green. We also found one
dead golden eagle on the bank of C Section near
Swallow Canyon. Not sure how the eagle died, but it looks like something
was feeding on it at some point afterwards. I have attached a picture.
Near the end of C Section we spotted one GREAT HORNED OWL tucked away in
the canyon wall.
Away from the river around Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area we saw
two different flocks of PINYON JAYS, of ~30 birds each, a few MOUNTAIN
BLUEBIRDS, and a small flock of what appeared to be ~15 ROSY-FINCHES
foraging near Red Fleet Reservoir. This seemed odd as the elevation here
is not particularly high, and the habitat is pinyon-juniper. Does anyone
else have records of rosy-finches in p-j communities? The birds were too
far away to be sure, but the closest one appeared to be a black
Also, at Red Canyon Lodge they have a feeder that was servicing a large
mixed flock of PINE SISKINS and AMERICAN GOLDFINCHES, with one STELLER'S
JAY. There was also a downy or hairy woodpecker off in the distance. Best
bird at this location was a small flock of RED CROSSBILLS that were
passing through just as we arrived, and got great looks at one that
perched at the top of a tree.
I thought we might spot some early swallows or osprey during the trip but
they were all absent.
by Casey Day