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Scouting the Palos Region

Cook County, IL

sunny 39 °F

On wednesday I spent the entire day birding the Palos region of Cook in preparation for my december big day coming up TOMORROW (!) with Isoo and Jake. I started off at Centennial Park in search of waterfowl, and maybe some finches. HOODED MERGANSERS never disappoint!
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And SWAMP SPARROW is always a decent find in the wintertime around here:
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Next stop was Orland Grassland where I lucked into a GREAT HORNED OWL. Love spending time was these gorgeous creatures.
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Then, back of LaGrange road to McGinnis Slough where a distant HERRING ruled over a group of smaller RING-BILLED GULLS.
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And KILLDEER was a good pickup there too — a nice one for december! Next stop: McClaughry Springs Woods to try for Pileated Woodpecker, Carolina Wren, and any other passerines that might be around. BROWN CREEPER was nice to see:
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Was super happy to pick up CAROLINA WREN there — can be a tough bird in Cook County:
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Next stop — Ford Rd for Tufted Titmouse. WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH:
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Yay! TUFTED TITMOUSE:
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NORTHERN FLICKER across the road in Bergman Slough:
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Next stop: RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH at Camp Sagawau Nature Center:
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And PINE SISKINS & AMERICAN GOLDFINCHES:
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That’s when I noticed the SANDHILL CRANE migration starting to wind up for the day!
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At my next stop, Saganashkee Slough, the migration continued:
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And it was great to see two BELTED KINGFISHERS there as well:
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It was a great day! Hopefully these birds stick around for my big day tomorrow. Bird-of-the-day to the GREAT HORNED OWL with runner-up to the CAROLINA WREN.

Good birding,
Henry
World Life List: 1123 Species

Posted by skwclar 21:18 Archived in USA

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Wow that Carolina wren is a stunner! Good Luck tomorrow Henry!

by Poo

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