While too dark to get great photos, our scope views were stunning. Soon after the Peregrine had departed, the Coopers Hawk re-appeared near its original perch and very good scope views allowed us to tick off field marks separating this bird from its close relative, the Sharp-shinned Hawk. Other raptors seen included a Red-shouldered Hawk and an adult Bald Eagle. ~ Tim Colborn, Hotspot Bird Walk
Event: Hotspot Field Trip to Sandy Ridge Reservation
Date: Saturday, November 17, 2018
Time: 7:00 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Location: Sandy Ridge Reservation, 6195 Otten Rd, North Ridgeville, OH 44039 Map
Leader: Tim Colborn
Target Species: WaterfowlResults: 4 Birders and 35 Species
Description: Four members of the Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society joined leader Tim Colborn on a local search for waterfowl and other birds at Sandy Ridge Reservation in the Lorain County Metro Parks on Saturday, November 17, 2018. Skies were overcast with temps in the mid 40’s as we arrived at the Reservation at about 8:00 a.m.
At the feeders near the Reservation building, we had looks at common species like White-breasted Nuthatch, Downy Woodpecker and a skittish White-throated Sparrow. Walking through the wet woodlands, we enjoyed other common forest birds like Red-bellied Woodpecker, Tufted Titmouse and migrant Golden-crowned Kinglets.
Upon exiting the woods, we arrived at the impoundments for our target group of birds including ducks, geese and swans. Immediately upon gaining a view, we had many Mallard, Gadwall, and Northern Shoveler. The day would be good for dabblers, less so for divers. Scanning the ponds produced a handful of Green-winged Teal, American Wigeon, Hooded Merganser, American Black Duck and Ruddy Duck. A single female Bufflehead was diving and feeding near the central mound viewing point. Other waterfowl seen were nearly 150 Canada Geese and two Trumpeter Swans.
In addition to waterfowl, raptors were the other highlight of the day. As we emerged from the woods into the wetlands area, an adult Cooper’s Hawk was spied by one of our group. We all got quick looks before the bird dropped from its perch and disappeared. Several minutes later, we were treated to an incoming Peregrine Falcon that cruised over the water and perched in a tree allowing scope views for nearly a quarter hour before moving to another tree and showing off another fifteen minutes! While too dark to get great photos, our scope views were stunning. Soon after the Peregrine had departed, the Coopers Hawk re-appeared near its original perch and very good scope views allowed us to tick off field marks separating this bird from its close relative, the Sharp-shinned Hawk. Other raptors seen included a Red-shouldered Hawk and an adult Bald Eagle.
In total, 35 species (including 11 waterfowl species) were seen by the time we completed our long walk around the property and headed for home. - Tim Colborn, Bird Walk Leader