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Wooded Island Bird Walk Report

Submitted by Jennie Strable on Sun, 02/28/2016 - 3:57pm

Event date:

Saturday, January 2, 2016 - 8:00am 



 Happy New Year everyone!

We had the pleasure of birding two days in a row with our traditional New Year’s Day bird walk falling on a Friday, and our regular Saturday walk today.  The weather was much more pleasant today than yesterday, and the bird count was higher today too.  We didn’t see anything on Friday that we didn’t also see today so this report will just focus on January 2nd.

Our wintering ducks have still not arrived in great numbers, with the exception of the Red-breasted Mergansers, of which we had a fairly large flock at the outer harbor.  Mark and Sandra had a flock of 30 Sandhill Cranes fly over shortly after they arrived, so they had the best sighting of the morning.  Eric checked Paul’s records for the latest date Sandhills were spotted in Jackson Park, and that date is January 2nd, so if more are seen after today, we’ve set a new record late date.

BIRDERS:  8; Jennie, Katie, Edith, Eric, Karin D., Mark, Sandra, and their friend, whose name I think I remember but won’t include it in case I’m wrong.             

TIME:   8:00am – 9:30am       

PLACES:  Bobolink Meadow and the Outer Harbor

WEATHER: Cold, in the 20s, but with beautiful blue skies and sun          

The following is Eric’s e-bird report:

X Canada Goose -- At least 70
1 Common Goldeneye
2 Hooded Merganser
1 Red-tailed Hawk
1 Ring-billed Gull
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Hairy Woodpecker -- Female
4 American Crow
2 Black-capped Chickadee
1 European Starling
1 American Tree Sparrow
1 Dark-eyed Junco
2 American Goldfinch -- Heard
1 House Sparrow

And, 30 flyover Sandhill Cranes

Outer Harbor:

Red-breasted Mergansers




Canada Geese

Various gulls

This is a group report, with many birders contributing to the list. Most of the birds were seen by a least several or all the birders.

Corrections, additions and comments are welcome.

Recordings are not used to attract birds.

This report will be recorded on eBird as a group report for the Wooded Island Bird Walks.

The Walks are free and open to one and all. They are held year round.Newcomers are warmly welcomed. 

Note on Darrow Bridge: Darrow Bridge has been barricaded by the Department of Transportation. No one can cross. A high black metal iron fence has been erected on all four sides. It appears that the fence will remain in place until Darrow Bridge is completely rebuilt, and the work is not expected to begin until 2017 at the earliest. The Bridge has been deemed unsafe.

The Walks start at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday.

Birders meet in the southwest corner of the East Parking Lot, where metered parking is available. Wooded Island is closed off by a fence while work in being done. Birders walk through Bobolink Meadow and view the eastside of Wooded Island and the East Lagoon.

Directions:  Exit Lake Shore Drive at Science Drive, which is the stoplight just south of the major 57th Drive intersection by the Museum of Science and Industry.  Turn Left (south) at the stop sign at the intersection of Science Drive and Columbia Drive. Go through the parking lot to the southwest end.

Note on Parking and Lots: While restoration is ongoing, heavy equipment has taken over half of the east parking lot, off of South Lake Shore Drive, and half of the southwest parking lot which has an entrance off of Hayes Drive (63rd St.) and just east of Cornell Drive. Birders will be able to find metered parking in both lots. The East Parking Lot is preferred. There is also unmetered parking along Stony Island Avenue from 59th to 56thStreet.

Good birding everyone,


Earlier Event: December 12
Wooded Island Bird Walk Report
Later Event: January 9
Wooded Island Bird Walk Report