Morning Birding Species List | August 14, 2018
Tuesday, August 14, 2018, 7:30AM - 10:30AM
Location: Hallam Lake and Aspen Community Garden/Marolt Open Space
The sight of a single Violet-green Swallow indicates that swallows are migrating out of the Roaring Fork Valley at this time, as one of the earliest migratory species to leave. Hummingbird activity is still very high in food-rich areas as these birds build up the fat reserves they need for migration; we expect the hummingbirds to be leaving in the next couple of weeks. This morning we had the opportunity to study several flycatchers, but were not able to make positive ID's other than recognizing that three of them were members of the notoriously tricky Empidonax genus. These flycatchers are no longer singing, nor are they necessarily in their typical breeding habitats, thus eliminating the two most useful clues we rely on for identification in the field. Aerial swarms of insects seem to be prolific, and we saw Cedar Waxwings, flycatchers, and hummingbirds feeding on them. At the garden, we were stumped by a species of sparrow, probably juvenile Chipping Sparrows, and also had the opportunity to learn field marks of juvenile White-crowned Sparrows and Green-tailed Towhees. A female Lazuli Bunting was a nice follow-up to our mini-lesson which focused on this species and field marks for the very different color patterns of males and females. Join us next Tuesday at Rock Bottom Ranch!
~ Rebecca Weiss, ACES Bird Guide
Photo by Dale Armstrong