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All:

I lead a small group of Collier County Auduboners to STA-5 in Hendry  
County from Naples yesterday, February 3, 2007. My normal "partner in  
crime," Alan Murray,  left Naples at 4:00AM to join Margaret England  
on an owl and rail prowl which started at 6:00AM. No rails were seen  
yesterday but a Sora was heard by some of the 84 tour paticipants(!)  
and Alan managed to add Barn Owl to the STA-5 checklist when one bird  
flew across Blumberg Rd. in his car's headlights. The other addition  
to the checklist was a Western Kingbird that was seen by a small  
group of birders, again on Blumberg Rd., a little shortly after first  
light. Once again, a Petrochelidon swallow species was seen by  
several birders. I'm convinced that this swallow is a Cave Swallow as  
this species is expanding its range in south Florida whereas Cliff  
Swallow would be  extremely rare anywhere in North America, given the  
time of year. In addition to my group from Collier Audubon, there was  
a group from Highlands Audubon I believe, along with the usual cadre  
of birders, photographers and sightseers. It was a very cool day,  
relatively speaking, with high winds -- very unSTA-5-like. Still we  
managed to see 75 species of birds there. Not all species were seen  
by all birders. Anyone in attendance having additions or corrections  
should contact me or Margaret England.

Here is our list for STA-5 (including Blumberg Rd.):

Fulvous Whistling-Duck
American Wigeon
Mottled Duck
Blue-winged Teal
Northern Shoveler
Green-winged Teal
Ring-necked Duck
Lesser Scaup
Ruddy Duck
Pied-billed Grebe
American White Pelican
Double-crested Cormorant
Anhinga
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Snowy Egret
Little Blue Heron
Tricolored Heron
Cattle Egret
Green Heron
Black-crowned Night-Heron
White Ibis
Glossy Ibis
Roseate Spoonbill
Wood Stork
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Osprey
Snail Kite
Northern Harrier
Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Crested Caracara
American Kestrel
Peregrine Falcon
Sora
Purple Swamphen
Purple Gallinule
Common Moorhen
American Coot
Limpkin
Sandhill Crane
Killdeer
Black-necked Stilt
Greater Yellowlegs
Lesser Yellowlegs
Least Sandpiper
Long-billed Dowitcher
Wilson's Snipe
Caspian Tern
Black Skimmer
Mourning Dove
Common Ground-Dove
Barn Owl
Belted Kingfisher
Eastern Phoebe
Western Kingbird
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
Loggerhead Shrike
Tree Swallow
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Cave Swallow
Barn Swallow
American Robin
Northern Mockingbird
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Palm Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Eastern Towhee
Savannah Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Eastern Meadowlark
Common Grackle
Boat-tailed Grackle

On the drive to STA-5 we found the usual birds but most impressive  
were the long "V's" of American White Pelicans seen in a few places.  
An awesome sight was an American Crow, Crested Caracara & adult Bald  
Eagle, all vying for the carcass of a dead opossum on CR 846. It was  
a game of tag with the crow chasing the caracara which was chasing  
the eagle. Incredible! Another great sight were 18 Yellow-crowned  
Night-Herons and 2 Black-crowned Night-Herons all grouped together in  
one spot at the L-1 Canal on CR 835 about two miles west of Blumberg  
Rd. I'd thought that they would have vacated the area since their  
"hiding place" i.e. the Brazilian Peppers lining the banks of the  
canal were eradicated, but there they were. One the return trip, we  
found a lone Scissor-tailed Flycatcher about 1.5 miles east of Canon  
Hammock Park on CR835. We found some passerines in Canon Hammock  
itself including Great Crested Flycatcher, Blue-headed Vireo, Ruby- 
crowned Kinglet, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Downy & Red-bellied  
Woodpecker, Black-and-white, Yellow-rumped, Palm & Pine Warblers  
among others. A stop at the Tyrant flycatcher site along CR858 on the  
Hendry/Collier County line only netted us two Western Kingbirds and  
neither Scissor-tailed nor the female vermilion Flycatcher. perhaps  
the high winds and cool temperatures kept these birds close to  
cover. . . . All in all, another great day of birding in the south  
Florida interior.

Cheers.

Vince

Vincent Lucas
Naples, FL
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/leppyone/
http://www.caloosabirdclub.org



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