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Recent Bird Sightings-March 17 – Kansas Wetlands Education Center

Recent Bird Sightings-March 17

Spring Migration is here.  After several weeks of cold, winter weather, we’ve seen some great movement of birds over the last week of milder weather.  That activity will only increase over the next few weeks.

Most know that our peak Spring migration occurs from the last 2 weeks of April through the first 2 weeks of May.

We received some more rain this past week.  This rain only adds to the already high water levels at Cheyenne Bottoms.  All pools are full and KDWPT staff are still attempting to move water around and release water from the basin.  However, at this time all roads are open and passable.

Water levels and waterfowl counts are updated weekly on the KDWPT Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area website:  https://ksoutdoors.com/KDWPT-Info/Locations/Wildlife-Areas/Southwest/Cheyenne-Bottoms  As of 3/14/2019 water levels were Pool 1a-55″, Pools 1b and 1c-47″, Pool 2-22″, Pool 3a-22″, Pool 3b-18″, Pool 4a-18″, Pool 4b-9″, Pool 5-14″.

Common birds this time of year include: Waterfowl of all types, Cormorants, Pelicans, Great Blue Herons, Hawks, Coots, Sandhill Cranes, Killdeer, Gulls, Meadowlarks, and Blackbirds.

As of 3/14/2019 KDWPT staff are reporting lower goose numbers, down to around 5,000 total Geese (about half snows and half dark geese), and 50,000 ducks with a mix of all species (Shovelers, Mallards, Green-winged teal, Ruddy Ducks, and Redheads the more common species).

Sandhill Cranes have been migrating through the area heavily for the past week.  We are probably on the downward side of their migration through this area.  There have been no reports of Whooping Cranes yet this Spring in this area.

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 wetlandscenter@fhsu.edu.

Here is a list birds that have been reported over the last couple weeks:

  • Greater White-fronted Goose
  • Snow Goose (large groups have been hanging out in Pool 1a or 4b most afternoons)
  • Ross’s Goose
  • Canada Goose
  • Trumpeter Swan
  • Gadwall
  • American Wigeon
  • Mallard
  • Blue-winged Teal–FOS seen 3/17
  • Northern Shoveler–most common duck species right now
  • Northern Pintail
  • Green-winged Teal
  • Canvasback
  • Redhead
  • Ring-necked Duck
  • Lesser Scaup
  • Bufflehead
  • Common Goldeneye
  • Hooded Merganser
  • Ring-necked Pheasant
  • Wild Turkey
  • Pied-billed Grebe–FOS seen 3/17
  • Double-crested Cormorant–FOS seen 3/17
  • American White Pelican
  • Great Blue Heron
  • Bald Eagle
  • Northern Harrier
  • Red-tailed Hawk
  • American Coot
  • Sandhill Crane
  • Snowy Plover–FOS seen 3/17
  • Killdeer–FOS seen 3/13
  • Lesser Yellowlegs–FOS seen 3/17
  • Greater Yellowlegs–FOS seen 3/17
  • Baird’s Sandpiper–FOS seen 3/17
  • Pectoral Sandpiper–FOS seen 3/17
  • Long-billed Dowitcher–FOS seen 3/17
  • Ring-billed Gull
  • Herring Gull
  • Mourning Dove
  • Northern Flicker
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • American Kestrel
  • Horned Lark
  • American Robin
  • European Starling
  • American Tree Sparrow
  • Song Sparrow
  • Harris’s Sparrow
  • Dark-eyed Junco
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Red-winged Blackbird
  • Eastern Meadowlark
  • Western Meadowlark
  • Great-tailed Grackle
  • Brown-headed Cowbird
  • House Sparrow

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