Bird activity has been high over the last 2 weeks. Water has opened up, and many waterfowl have returned to Cheyenne Bottoms after being somewhat absent for a few weeks.
Waterfowl are the predominant group of birds right now. Snow geese numbers have increased dramatically, with many thousand in and around the Cheyenne Bottoms area. Greater white-fronted Canada, and Cackling geese are also able to be seen regularly.
Duck numbers and diversity have increased as well, with Mallards, Pintails, and Common Mergansers being the most predominant.
Gulls have been plentiful with a nice diversity being seen if visitors wish to scan groups of gulls with a spotting scope.
Quite a few Great Blue Herons can be seen most days. And raptors are still plentiful with Northern Harriers, Red-tails, and Bald Eagles typically seen every outing.
Duck hunting season is now closed statewide, but goose hunting season remains open for all species through February 12.
Water levels remain good area wide at Cheyenne Bottoms, and received a boost due to the nearly 2″ of rain/ice a few weeks ago. Pools 2, 3a, 4a, and 4b range from 15-20″ depth. Water levels and waterfowl reports are updated weekly on the KDWPT website: http://ksoutdoors.com/KDWPT-Info/Locations/Wildlife-Areas/Southwest/Cheyenne-Bottoms
Give us your reports. We rely heavily on other birders to know what is being seen at Cheyenne Bottoms. Submit reports to Ebird, or email your observations to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is a list birds that have been reported over the last couple weeks:
- Greater White-fronted Goose
- Snow Goose-Large flocks of several thousand seen flying or on the water in Pool 1
- Ross’s Goose-mixed in with Snows
- Canada Goose
- Cackling Goose
- Brant–1 individual observed on 1/30 in Pool 1A
- American wigeon
- American Black Duck–One observed on 1/25
- Mallard–thousands seen area-wide
- Northern Pintail
- Green-winged Teal
- Ring-necked duck
- Common Merganser–Mostly seen in Pool 1C
- Ring-necked Pheasant
- Mourning Dove
- American Coot
- Ring-billed Gull–100’s to 1000’s areawide
- Herring Gull
- Thayer’s Gull–one reported on 1/22
- Lesser Black-backed Gull–one persists last seen 1/22
- Glaucous Gull–seen several times. Last seen 1/25
- Great Black-backed Gull–one observed 1/24
- American White Pelican–1 individual has been observed throughout winter
- Great Blue Heron
- Bald Eagle
- Northern Harrier–Good numbers over most pools
- Sharp-shinned Hawk
- Red-tailed Hawk
- Rough-legged Hawk
- Great Horned Owl
- Downy Woodpecker
- Northern Flicker
- American Kestrel
- Horned Lark
- Eastern Bluebird
- Cedar Waxwing
- American Goldfinch
- Harris’s Sparrow
- Dark-eyed Junco
- Meadowlark Sp.
- Red-winged Blackbird
- Great-tailed Grackle
- Brown-headed Cowbird