Recently I took a group out for birding for the Fort Collins Audubon Society. The plan was to head to the hills and look for mountain birds. We had 3 cars full of folks – 11 total. One fellow, Eric Defonso, spotted a pair of eagles near Lyons and hollered on the radios we safely turned 3 cars around and had stunning looks at a nice pair of Bald Eagles, one who was enjoying a fish breakfast. Neither eagle paid us any mind.Photo above by Larry Griffin, used with permission.
Our next main stop was in Ward, Colorado, where a generous couple allows birders to walk by their house and see what we can see. Evening Grosbeaks, Rosy Finches and Pine Grosbeaks were all on the wish list. We dipped on the Evenings and Rosys but were thoroughly entertained by a flock of 25 Pine Grosbeaks. Several members of the group were able to add this bird to their life list.
Photo above by Larry Griffin, used with permission.
While in Ward, many folks took advantage of the Purple Porta Potty. A landmark in it’s own right.
Participants scanning the clear mountain skies for birds.
My little, bitty Pine Grosbeak photo. When I’m leading a trip I focus less on my own photography and more on keeping people on birds and off the roads and such.
We had a tasty and hot lunch at the Meadow Mountain Cafe in Allenspark before visiting the FawnBrook Inn and other nearby homes to check out their feeders. Hairy woodpeckers taking advantage of the suet offered. Steller’s Jays and Mountain Chickadees were quite abundant. Rosy Finches were noticibly absent!
A nice surprise for the day was this Northern Shrike, a life bird for several on the trip.