January Field Trip Swan Search


(Update added 1/28:

…“A day or two can make a big difference when birding. Approximately 148 Trumpeter Swans  were seen on the river Saturday 1/27/18 while on Sunday, just at Iargo, over 60!

Keep looking everywhere!!” – Sue D.)

Five hearty AVA members gathered at Iargo Springs to search out Trumpeter Swans along the AuSable River on a sunny and balmy 42 degree day, January 26, 2018.  The swans were right there and easily visible from the platform. That made the search pretty short and sweet thanks to good advice from Peggy and Phil. There were 20 plus Trumpeters, some flying (oh so gorgeous!) some calling and feeding.  Also seen/heard were about 40 Golden Eye Ducks, two Bald Eagles, a couple Black-capped Chickadee, a White breasted Nuthatch and 5 -6 Pine Siskins and one lone Raven patrolling M-65.

Due to recent snow a number of tracks were identifiable as well. We walked between the two viewing platforms at Westgate, where there were zero swans. We did, however, see tracks of mice, multiple Ruffed Grouse, possibly fox and definitely people.

Much birding conversation and a delicious lunch at the Bear’s Den Restaurant  followed the viewing.  Kathy S. and Carol B. joined us at the Bear’s Den and we all enjoyed getting to know new members Melinda and Bob a bit.  Kathy and Carol reported a RHWO near Sand Lake,  a Red-shouldered Hawk and a fox that trotted across Esmond Road !!

Oh, yes, four of the group highly recommend the homemade chicken dumpling soup!  Others voted for chili…. Or the half pound burger!

Photo Left to right Melinda and Bob, Ruth, Sue and Larry.

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