Susan at Pinnacle Mountain State Park had offered to take ASCA members on a free bird cruise to reward us for some help they received from Dan last spring. The boat could only support a maximum of 10 or 12 but Dan & Samantha, Karen & her parents, Sam & I, and another woman whose name I don’t made the excursion. The weather was great, sunny with a temp of about 50. However, while there was little wind on shore that was not true when Susan opened it up to get across the lake. The wind chill was tolerable as I had bundled up but an extra coat would not have been too much.
We did a circuit from Jolly Roger Marina west to Look & Vista Points then along the north side back in about two hours. We saw many ducks who seemed to think we were chasing them and two Braddys who were scoping for birds at Vista Point. We had a good time.
Back on shore, we retrieved our electronics and realized that Dennis had seen a Red-throated Loon while we were playing on the water so we saddled up and went to the Hundley Road Causeway and after a bit spotted it as well. Year bird 109 for me, life bird for Sam.
That was actually Sam’s second life bird for the weekend. The day before, the same crew had gone to Mel White’s neighborhood to look for the Spotted Towhee that he and Larry Witherspoon had reported over the last several weekends. We were there for about an hour but both of the individual were kind of reclusive. However, everyone got a look at one time or another. Everyone but me. I left thinking I had seen one, adding it to my state and year list but then I realized I couldn’t be sure I had not seen a female Eastern Towhee so I scratched it off. Sam however did see the real thing which is the important thing.