Joe Hogan Fish Hatchery 8/24/2008.

I arrived at 7:50. Since I had been there last week, I knew the action was in one drying pond on the eastern edge so I went straight there with my scope. At least twice before, I’ve been told by personnel that it was okay to drive around the facility but today I entered through the entrance on the eastern edge and saw a sign that said it was a walking tour only. I decided to split the difference and drive the gravel roads and walk to the pond once I ran out of gravel. This pond in just south of the northeastern most pond.

My key find was three White-rumped Sandpipers, a life bird for me. They were larger than the Least and Semipalmated Sandpipers and smaller than the Pectoral Sandpipers around them. They had relatively short beaks, dark but not black. They had light brown or light rufous-brown crowns and distinct eye-stripes. Their breasts and bellies were white with a little tan on the sides of shoulder and neck. The wings were mottled and showed similar coloring as the crown. The legs were dark but not black, like the beak. Because of all this, I think they were juveniles. According to the AAS field, this is a very rare fall migrant.

Left at 9:22. I noticed that I had seen no swallows. I wonder if they are starting to migrate away?

Species seen or heard:
• White-rumped Sandpiper
• Lesser Yellowlegs Mourning Dove
• Least Sandpiper
• Semipalmated Sandpiper
• Pectoral Sandpiper
• Semipalmated Plover
• Great Egret
• Great Blue Heron
• Green Heron
• Snowy Egret
• Killdeer
• Red-winged Blackbird
• Blue Jay
• Northern Mockingbird
• Fox Squirrel

Bald Knob NWR 8/23/2008

I attended an ASCA field trip today. Arrived at 8:15. Took the Coal Chute Road entrance and restricted myself to the ponds near that road. Left at about 11:30. I believe we had about 27 birders.

Species seen or heard:
• Rock Pigeon
• Mourning Dove
• Barn Swallow
• Eastern Meadowlark
• Great Blue Heron
• Little Blue Heron
• Red-winged Blackbird
• Great Egret
• Snowy Egret
• Roseate Spoonbill
• Long-billed Dowitcher
• Killdeer
• Short-billed Dowitcher
• Pectoral Sandpiper
• Mallard
• Semipalmated Plover
• Green-winged Teal
• Blue-winged Teal
• Northern Shoveler
• Black-necked Stilt
• Lesser Yellowlegs
• Sanderling
• Canada Goose
• Northern Rough-winged Swallow
• Black-crowned Night-heron

Joe Hogan Fish Hatchery 8/17/2008

This fish hatchery doesn’t get as much attention as some others, perhaps because honestly it is often disappointing, but today was a good day at Joe Hogan. I arrived at 8:15 AM. I climbed the tower to check the ponds and found several Green Herons perched conveniently in the nearby trees. Most of the ponds were full and I could see many Great Blue Herons and especially Great Egrets around. However, in the northeast region were a few ponds in assorted states of drainage and one in particular on the eastern edge of the hatchery looked best of all. I walked around the long way so I could sneak up it with the Sun to my back. I found a good variety of shorebirds there, in fact about 90% of the bird species I saw t the hatchery I saw at that one pond. The numbers were not nearly as large as what were at BKNWR yesterday but there was almost as good a variety of shorebirds. If you want shorebirds without the big drive, check it out. But don’t count on the restrooms being unlocked. Left the hatchery at 10:30 AM.

Species seen or heard:
• Semipalmated Sandpiper
• Semipalmated Plover
• Least Sandpiper
• Pectoral Sandpiper
• Long-billed Dowitcher
• Short-billed Dowitcher
• Baird’s Sandpiper
• Killdeer
• Loggerhead Shrike
• Great Egret
• Great Blue Heron
• Green Heron
• Purple Martin
• Northern Cardinal
• Mourning Dove
• Northern Mockingbird
• House Sparrow
• Red-tailed Hawk
• Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
• Red-winged Blackbird
• Carolina Chickadee
• European Starling
• Chipping Sparrow
• Carolina Wren