November 3rd, 2017
Alan Troyer and I had 114 species today, starting at Pace Point and Rocky
Point and hitting most of our favorite hotspots along the way, including
Bennet's Creek, Granny's Branch, Lick Creek, Big Sandy Flats, Britton Ford,
Eagle Creek, and Paris Landing State Park, then ending the day at the Pump
Station and Pool 7 of the Duck River Unit TNWR.
We had only 20 species of waterfowl, with nothing unexpected and no
Scoters. The waterfowl highlights were a female RED-BREASTED MERGANSER at
Pace Point and one each SNOW and ROSS'S GEESE at Britton Ford. Decent
numbers of LESSER SCAUP were around at several locations with over 100 seen
at the Duck River Unit Pump Station, but still no Greater Scaup.
Several REDHEADs, a single CANVASBACK and the only RING-NECKED DUCKs of
the day were also seen at the Pump Station.
As expected, COMMON LOONS are now present in numbers at nearly every stop
around Kentucky Lake, with only a few HORNED GREBEs around as well.
An OSPREY was seen at the New Johnsonville Bridge, the only one for the
Good for November, 11 species of shorebirds were tallied at several
different locations, with the biggest numbers at the Big Sandy Flats.
Again, nothing really unexpected, with a SPOTTED SANDPIPER at Pace Point
perhaps the least expected. Also at Pace Point, a single LEAST SANDPIPER
and a flyover GREATER YELLOWLEGS was heard only.
Our first DUNLIN of the day were at Bennet's Creek Overlook, with 29
counted there, 25 at Lick Creek, 365 at Big Sandy Mudflats, 10 at Britton
Ford and 61 at Eagle Creek for an impressive total of 490 DUNLIN for the
This total is almost certainly all different birds from the 310 counted
at the Duck River Unit and 46 in Perry County over the last few days. That
would be 846+ Dunlin present on Kentucky Lake this week!
Also present at the Big Sandy Mudflats, 2 continuing BLACK-BELLIED
PLOVERs, 120 KILLDEERS, 6 LEAST SANDPIPERS, a PECTORAL SANDPIPER, 5
SANDERLINGs and 7 LONG-BILLED DOWITCHERS. A WILSON'S SNIPE at Britton Ford
was the last shorebird addition.
The continuing hybrid GREAT BLACK-BACKED X GLAUCOUS GULL was seen from
Pace Point looking East, the bird was flying and soon disappeared towards
Paris Landing and not seen again. Other Gull highlights were 3 LESSER
BLACK-BACKED GULLS at Paris Landing State Park, 5 FRANKLIN'S GULLS at the
Big Sandy Flats and 1 each at Britton Ford and the Pump Station in
Humphrey's County. (One of only a few Humphrey's County records)
A few lingering TREE SWALLOWs were still present at the Duck River Unit,
but numbers seem to be way down.
Britton Ford produced several MARSH WRENs, 20 HORNED LARKs, 2 AMERICAN
PIPITs, 5 LECONTE'S SPARROWs and one continuing NELSON'S SPARROW in Robert
Wheat's small patch of Panicum at the end of ------Road.
Finally at dusk in pool 7 of the Duck River Unit, Alan waded into a
section of really nasty hitch-hikers and flushed up 3 SORAS, 1 VIRGINIA
RAIL, and 1 AMERICAN BITTERN. (No Yellow Rails)
We were also able to add a few last minute VESPER SPARROWS here (for 12
Sparrow species) several MARSH and HOUSE WRENs, a flyover LESSER
YELLOWLEGS, 2 GREAT HORNED and 1 EASTERN SCREECH-OWL, and last but not
least, after it was too dark to see, Alan heard the SHORT-EARED OWL calling
at the back end of pool 7 while I was looking for it all the way up at the
This could have been a big day, but sadly, we missed Wild Turkey,
Sharp-shinned Hawk, Barred Owl, Hairy Woodpecker, Merlin, Cedar Waxwing,
Orange-Crowned Warbler, Fox Sparrow, Lincoln's Sparrow, Common Grackle and
Ruben Stoll, Centerville TN