Hi Wendy! Yes, I'm glad the story had a happy ending, too...I felt so sorry for that little bird, confused and disoriented like that. The park has been Mr. Nice Guy in past years by letting folks park for free at all the forrest road entrances, and the horse trailer lot, but no more. But they *really* need the money, so DCR is requiring all state parks to collect the customary parking fee for any vehicles parked on state park lands (and that's fair...I used to park and walk in for years while I was a penniless student, so I can't complain). I saw lots of BG Gnatcatcher nests at Point-of-Rocks and Dutch Gap, and I never stopped to think that Cowbirds also try to eggdump in their nests as well (I always thought gnatcatchers were a bit small for that). Well, about those mudflats...the park management is concerned because it's runoff from the activity in outlying areas around the park that's accumulated into those mudflats we see now. I love it that we now have 4 pair of Killdeer and even some Snipe down there using the flats, but if that keeps up, Beaver Lake will become a marsh, and then solid land. It was odd because it seemed almost as if those flats just *appeared* out of thin air one year, too. General question for all - do young Grey Catbirds not have a red fanny? The one living around my community doesn't have the red fanny and I wondered if this was perhaps a young bird? Any ideas? Happy Birding. Irene ----- Original Message ----- From: <WEalding@xxxxxxx> To: <va-richmond-general@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> Sent: Sunday, May 30, 2004 5:04 PM Subject: [va-richmond-general] Re: Once in a lifetime > Hi Irene > Glad your story seemed to have a happy ending. We stopped by the park > briefly this afternoon to buy an annual pass so that we'll be legal when we park > at the outlying lots come July 1. We walked down to the edge of the lake and > found a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher feeding a very fat young Cowbird. > Also amazed to see all the vegetation that has developed on the mudflats of > Beaver Lake. The Killdeers were very active. > Wendy You are subscribed to VA-Richmond-General. To unsubscribe, send email to va-richmond-general-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with 'unsubscribe' in the Subject field. To adjust other settings (vacation, digest, etc.) please visit, //www.freelists.org/list/va-richmond-general.