Jackson Audubon Society

 The Audubon Society of Jackson County, Michigan

Early Waterfowl Tour

Saturday, March 31, 2018 9:10 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

The rain held off most of the morning for the annual Jackson Audubon Society Early Waterfowl Tour.  JAS president Connie Spotts lead eleven members on a driving tour of Jackson area lakes in search of local and migrating waterfowl.

We started at Watkins Lake State Park.  (And don’t you just love saying “state park” after Watkins Lake?)  While the numbers of birds were not huge, we were not disappointed.  The highlights were Common Loon, Belted Kingfisher, and Common Goldeneye.  But these were overshadowed, or overflown, by a flock of about 20 Tundra Swans to the west.

From Watkins, we checked out Norvell Lake on Palmer and Austin Roads.  We added Gadwall and our first Tree Swallows for the morning.

Next, we checked out the north part of Portage Lake in hopes of seeing the White-winged Scoter reported earlier, but did not see it.

We had lunch at nearby Portage Lake Parlor, a newly opened restaurant on Seymour Rd. at Welch Lake Rd. 

We finished the trip with two stops, in the rain, at Gilletts Lake.  We had a grebe but could not determine if it was Horned or Eared as it was in transitional plumage.

The next JAS trip is the Tuesday Morning Group’s visit to the Muskegon Wastewater facility (http://jacksonaudubon.org/event-2829557)

Total species/taxa recorded was 45, complete list is below.

Number of Checklists: 5
Number of Taxa: 45

84 Canada Goose -- (1),(2),(3),(4)
12 Mute Swan -- (1),(2)
15 swan sp. -- (1)
2 Wood Duck -- (3)
4 Northern Shoveler -- (1),(2)
3 Gadwall -- (2),(3)
2 American Wigeon -- (3)
6 Mallard -- (1),(2),(3)
1 Redhead -- (4)
180 Ring-necked Duck -- (1),(2),(3),(4)
10 Lesser Scaup -- (3)
10 Greater/Lesser Scaup -- (4)
50 Bufflehead -- (1),(3),(4)
1 Common Goldeneye -- (1)
6 Hooded Merganser -- (1),(3)
10 Common Merganser -- (1)
2 Ruddy Duck -- (3)
1 Common Loon -- (1)
3 Pied-billed Grebe -- (1),(4)
1 Horned/Eared Grebe -- (4)
4 Great Blue Heron -- (1),(2),(3)
1 Turkey Vulture -- (1)
1 Bald Eagle -- (3)
1 Red-tailed Hawk -- (1)
10 American Coot -- (4)
10 Sandhill Crane -- (2)
3 Killdeer -- (1)
1 Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) -- (5)
2 Mourning Dove -- (1)
1 Belted Kingfisher -- (1)
1 Red-bellied Woodpecker -- (3)
3 American Crow -- (1)
2 Tree Swallow -- (2)
1 Black-capped Chickadee -- (5)
1 Tufted Titmouse -- (5)
1 White-breasted Nuthatch -- (5)
1 Eastern Bluebird -- (1)
4 American Robin -- (1)
1 American Tree Sparrow -- (5)
1 Chipping Sparrow -- (5)
1 Song Sparrow -- (5)
1 Northern Cardinal -- (1)
40 Red-winged Blackbird -- (1),(2)
10 Common Grackle -- (1)
1 House Sparrow -- (5)

Checklists included in this summary:
(1): Watkins Lake SP
Date: Mar 31, 2018, 09:30
(2): Norvell Lake (west)
Date: Mar 31, 2018, 10:30
(3): Cutler Rd. and Dunn Rd. wetland
Date: Mar 31, 2018, 11:15
(4): Gilletts Lake
Date: Mar 31, 2018, 14:00
(5): JAS Early Waterfowl Tour - driving
Date: Mar 31, 2018, 09:00

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