[TN-Bird] MS RV-TN/AR

October 2, 2005
Mud Island-Ensley Bottoms
Shelby Co.
Rice Fields and Lake Sides
Crittenden Co. AR
 
 
I met Dick Baxter from AR, for a tour of birding places along or near the  
Mississippi River. The calm winds and clear skies did not promote much movement 
 
along the river. The Osprey still hangs around and two small flights of peeps 
 sped down the river early but no gulls, terns, hawks or ducks were  seen 
during a short vigil.
 
The hackberry trees along the river were very active as it seems there has  
been a very good crop produced. We had quite a few Rose-breasted Grosbeaks,  
tanagers and orioles feeding overhead. A first of season Yellow-rumped fed on  
the ground and in low shrubs right in front of us. Chimney Swifts and swallows  
again covered the river high and low. The swallows were mainly Tree and  
Rough-winged with a few Barn in the mix. Still looking for another Cave;o)
 
At the pits we were treated to great looks at an adult, tundrius Peregrine,  
this one was a normal colored bird and not light like the one seen earlier in  
the week. We witnessed something neither of us had seen before as the bird  
dropped from its perch and swooped over a field, a hundred Horned Larks took up 
 pursuit and danced around the bird till all were out of sight. I've never 
seen a  flock of Horn Larks chase a raptor.
 
Needless to say the raptor pass had a sweeping effect on the Wind Bird  
population leaving us with 5 Western Sandpipers, 1 Baird's, 1 Lesser Yellowlegs 
 
and a few hundred Least Sandpipers. The ducks consisted of 60 Mallards 
including 
 the 2 pale birds that have been around a couple of years, 61 Shoveler, a 
couple  of Pintails and Blue-winged Teal.
 
Just across the bridge in AR we had a plegadis species drop into a brush  
covered tree line but it could not be located for an ID, my second for the area 
 
along the river this week. We scratched out a few goodies with lots of  
Ruby-crowned Kinglets, 1 Winter Wren, 1 Philadelphia Vireo, Magnolia,  
Bay-breasted, 
Black-throated Green and a cast of the other expected migrants,  but over all 
pretty slow.
 
We ran a few roads looking for some rice harvesting but found mostly  
harvested fields and only soybeans being harvested.
 
Good Birding  !!!

Jeff R. Wilson / TLBA
6298 Memphis-Arlington Road
Bartlett, TN  38135

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