Bald Knob NWR and Mount Magazine SP 7/4 and 7/5/2010

I went to BKNWR Sunday. I started at the Mingo Creek Unit which is accessed from US 64. I’ve never been there before but it deserves another visit at a different time of year.  Its got a series interconnecting trails along the edge of the Little Red River.  I didn’t see anything unusual there but its looks like it has potential and did have some good butterflies.  Not to mention mosquitoes so take bug spray if you go.
After Mingo Creek, I went to the main BKNWR. The biggest surprise to me was three American White Pelicans although technically the most notable bird was one, presumably injured, Northern Shoveler.  We usually concentrate on the fields just north of the grain bins but I drove around and saw they had standing water in the fields south of the bins. So, if those stay wet until migration season they should be watched for shorebirds.  I noticed they were pumping water around far more than what I’ve seen in the past so there’s not telling which fields might be busy in six weeks.

Monday, I got up early and went to Magazine Mountain SP for Rufous-crowned Sparrow.  The weather was very nice there, even as late as 11:30 the temperature was pleasant. Its a good place for a hot summer day.  I worked the area by the lodge for two solid hours trying to coax the RCSP but they wouldn’t come.  I could hear one back in the woods which is better than nothing but not as good as getting as good photo.  I did however get my best view of the year of a Scarlet Tanager, see below.

Black-winged Redbird

Eastern Wood-Pewee, perhaps a juvenile.

American Goldfinch. I haven’t seen these since May but they are common at Magazine.

I also have some new butterflies from both locations if you want to look

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