[TN-Bird] Reelfoot Lake Area

  • From: "Ken Leggett" <kcleggett@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2003 20:32:08 -0500

Last night we had rain over the area (2"+ in Ridgley and most of Lake and Dyer 
County.) and today I quickly checked a few locations.
The best location for shorebirds was the Ibis Hole today.  There were 12 
Black-necked Stilts, along  with Short-billed Dowitchers, White-rumped, Stilt, 
Pectoral, Least and Semipalmated Sandpipers.  The whole group was disturbed 
suddenly by something and I did not get a good count. This area has not had any 
birds until the last 10 days.  It provided the group that participated in the 
shorebird workshop the best group of birds for workshop identification.

Black Bayou has some mudflats both behind the pump house and along the road.  I 
only observed a small number of Pectoral, Solitary and Least Sandpipers there 
today but the habitat is good.

Island 13 has good habitat including good mudflats in the middle and had a 
variety of the same common shorebirds.  Due to time I was not able to cover the 
entire area and so I may have missed some unusual species.

At White Lake there was a juvenile Tri-colored Heron that was preening on the 
mud flats just in front of the observation tower.  He was still there when we 
left.  The shorebirds that are in White Lake are close to where the Heron was 
but in order to observe them the road all around the outside of the Lake must 
be taken and continue on it to where you are opposite the observation tower.  
Because of the vegetation there are only a few places where they can be seen.  
I had over 100 Pectoral, some Least and Semi-palmated Sandpipers but had many I 
could not identify because of the heat and distance.  The regular shorebird 
area in White Lake is almost completely covered with vegetation.  Carl Wirwa 
and his personnel at White Lake and Bogota have had a greater problem this year 
with the vegetation growing up as fast as the water drops and they are trying 
to come up with a solution.

The Bogota unit has two shorebird areas which have been good during the last 
couple of weeks.  However, after the rain, the water was back up into the weeds 
and there were only a few Spotted, Solitary, Lesser Yellowlegs and Least 
Sandpipers around today.  This should improve over the next few days.

The pool just south of Highway 103 in Dyer County near Great River Road still 
has significant water and has some Yellowlegs, Pectorals, Stilt, Least 
Sandpipers and Short-billed Dowitchers.

I did not check Heloise in Dyer County but do know that it has some mudflats.  
I will check it early this week.  The growth of many of the Willow trees there 
have made observation in parts of this south end of Everett's Lake more 
difficult than in the past.

In Kentucky, Lake # 9 is too high for much shorebirding but should be good in 
the next week or two.  Open Pond,  Willow Pond and Longpoint are pretty much 
dry except for some isolated mud flats along some of the roads in the area.

Ken Leggett
Dyersburg, TN

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