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Overwintering Virginia Rail

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I found this Virginia Rail 2 weeks ago in a return-flow channel on private property next to a residential subdivision in Canon City. Because it was almost 6 pm I couldn't get any reasonable pics. I have looked for this bird a number of times but did not refind until today and fortunately it was sunny so I got some nice pics. Interestingly this location used to wetlands until a developed bought the property and illegally diverted the return flow channel so he could put in a very small subdivision adjacent to the Arkansas River (for which the Corp of Engineers slapped his hands with a piddly fine) While Virginia Rail sightings are not rare in winter in Colorado they are pretty uncommon. I haven't seen a winter rail in the Canon City area for a few years. SeEtta

Super Blood Wolf Moon 2019

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I got one good photo of the Super Blood Wolf Moon tonight and had to use my tripod to get it. Used my Sony RX10-4 hybrid camera with Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* f/2.4-4 Zoom Lens, a sweet camera. This pic is at 600mm focal length (35mm equivalent) SeEtta

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker in Canon City

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I found this Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, my first of the season for this species, today in Canon City.  While we usually have several Williamson's Sapsuckers for the fall/early winter season, we usually get at least one Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and in most years a Red-naped Sapsucker.

This sapsucker is in juvenal plumage:  white wing stripe,  indistinct black and white striped face, and this one shoes the beginnings of the red crown found on this species.  SeEtta

Harlan's Red-tailed Hawk in Canon City

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(note click on 'Read More' below to see the other photos of this hawk)  I spotted this Harlan's Red-tailed Hawk today not far from the Arkansas River above a field right in town.  It was 150-200 feet away so had to crop severely to get these pics.
 The significant amount of white on this hawk's face, the white on it's breast and mottling on tail are field marks for this northern sub species of Red-tailed Hawk.
Some years we get a 5 or more Harlan's moving through or spending some of the winter.  This is the first one I have seen in the Canon City area this winter.  SeEtta


What the Cape May Warbler in Pueblo City Park is eating and where it has been seen

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I noted on the previous post that the Cape May Warbler appeared to be after some pretty small 'lumps' on a pine needle a few centimeters from it's bill as shown above.   Dave Leatherman, retired entomologist, shared the following in a post on Cobirds listserv regarding this bird's food sources: 

"Those look like the same aphids that have been attracting a lot of the late warblers along the Front Range.  I think it is the Powdery Pine Needle Aphid (Eulachnus rileyi or related species in the same genus).  Other warblers I have confirmed eating this same aphid of late are Blackburnian in Longmont, Yellow-rumped in Longmont, Yellow-rumped in Denver West Office Park, Palm Warbler in Denver West Office Park (per communication from Mark Chavez), Unknown warbler (probably Orange-crowned) in Denver West Office Park.  In autumn's past, I have seen a Blackburnian in Greeley, a Bay-breasted and Northern Parula in Boulder and a Pine in Loveland going for this sa…

Video clips of Pueblo, CO Cape May Warbler foraging in pine tree

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Yes, two short video clips and more pics including the one directly below that shows the warbler as it goes after some apparent food source on a pine needle (maybe insect larva?)
Cape May Warbler in Pueblo,Colorado from SeEtta Moss on Vimeo.
(Note: click See More located on lower right to see the videos) These are two short video clips of the Cape May Warbler I got to watch earlier this week in Pueblo, Colo City Park. During the full hour I (and Brandon Percival) watched this very rare warbler for this area it stayed in one pine tree. I was told it had also been seen in other pine trees located around the administration building in City Park. SeEtta
CapeMayWarbler in Pueblo Colorado\

A Cape May Warbler in Pueblo, CO, big rarity

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This very rare eastern Cape May Warbler was found by Brandon Percival and Van Truan 2 days ago in Pueblo City Park.  I ran into Brandon yesterday there and we looked for it for about 45 minutes before it showed itself in one of pine trees near the administration building.
This was one of the most cooperative warblers as it foraged in the lower branches of the tree and stayed in that same tree for an hour as we got great views and photo opportunities.  More Later.  SeEtta