With a temperate day of latter autumn expected, a drive to look for birds was done through eastern Cherry county on Saturday, November 4th.
The bird-watching route began east of Brownlee, and continued west and then northerly, including along Pass Creek to Swan Lake, west of Brownlee, along the road from Brownlee to Highway 97, then north to Spur 16B and past the northwest edge of Valentine NWR. Along the way, birds were recorded for seventeen distinct localities.
This is the tally of 35 species seen, based upon 72 records of occurrence. There were no large numbers of waterfowl at different water bodies but small-sized flocks of different species at the different places.
- Canada Goose: only at Swan Lake
- American Wigeon
- Northern Pintail
- Green-winged Teal
- Canvasback: enjoyed at Hackberry Lake
- Ruddy Duck
- Wild Turkey: a flock of 17 in a mown hay meadow in northern Wamaduze Valley
- Common Pheasant
- Pied-billed Grebe: the three species of grebes were all seen at Alkali Pond, along Highway 97
- Black-necked Grebe
- Western Grebe
- Double-crested Cormorant: at Swan Lake and Hackberry Lake
- Cooper's Hawk
- Northern Harrier: three along Brush Creek and also present elsewhere
- Bald Eagle: a few seen with single adult birds at each place observed
- Red-tailed Hawk
- Rough-legged Buzzard: in a tree on the north side of Brush Creek
- Downy Woodpecker
- Northern Flicker
- American Kestrel: single birds foraging along the county roads
- Merlin: a very pale bird perched atop a tree on the north side of Brush Creek
- American Crow
- Horned Lark
- Common Starling
- American Robin: nice numbers at several different places
- Red Crossbill: four heard flying over Swan Lake
- American Goldfinch
- Red-winged Blackbird: flocks of hundreds at two locations
- Brewer's Blackbird: amidst the Red-winged Blackbirds east of Brownlee
- Harris's Sparrow
- Dark-eyed Junco
- American Tree Sparrow
The weather was especially enjoyable at Swan Lake, when early in the afternoon there were warmer temperatures, slight winds and partly cloudy skies. Conditions at this place made the days' outing especially enjoyable.
During the day, 150 miles were travelled during about four hours of observation time. A special thanks to Gordon Warrick for his company and providing transportation.