Friday, May 5, 2017

Laramie Bird Notes -- 4/20 - 5/5

Spring migration is definitely in full swing. The winter weather of late has slowed migration down a bit, but look for things to pick up in the near future.

A recent Broad-winged Hawk pretty much caps off the hawk migration season. Be on the lookout for this species high above town on sunny days, as a handful of these uncommonish migrants have been seen each spring over the past couple years.

Waterbirds continue to fill the marshes and lakes west of town. Recent arrivals include Sora, Lesser Yellowlegs, Spotted Sandpiper, Solitary Sandpiper, American Avocet, Willet, Long-billed Dowitcher, Marbled Godwit, Semipalmated Plover, Baird's Sandpiper, Wilson's Phalarope, and Common Loon.

In the mountains, Violet-green Swallows, Broad-tailed Hummingbird, White-breasted Nuthatch, and Pygmy Nuthatch have been seen lately. Recently, a few Northern Saw-whet Owls were heard singing in the Happy Jack area of the Laramie Range.

In town, lots of fun songbird migrants have showed up, including Green-tailed Towhee, Spotted Towhee, House Wren, Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher, Wilson's Warbler, and Wilson's Warbler. Another Harris's Sparrow was found in town by Laurel Armstrong and stuck around for a few days, offering great looks!

Harris's Sparrow. Photo by Laurel Armstrong.
A great way to keep track of migration is to keep track of NEXRAD radar each night. An excellent website to both look at radar and get some information on how to interpret it is in the link below.

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