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: JxP and Wolf Lake, 16 January: Mallard x Gadwall hybrid, swans  ( 2422 )


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I joined Pat Durkin and the regulars for the Jackson Park Audubon bird walk yesterday, checking Wooded Island/Bobolink Meadow and the outer harbor area.  Later a few of us headed down to Wolf Lake.
The Wooded Island/Bobolink Meadow area was slow but we saw my FOY WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH near the Darrow Bridge at the end of our tour.  Earlier we had a HAIRY WOODPECKER in this area.  Heading towards the harbor we noted that the inner harbor was frozen with just a bit of open water at the Lake Shore Dr. bridge with a lone Herring Gull sitting on the ice.  In the outer harbor were male and female CANVASBACKS and some REDHEADS but the most interesting bird was an apparent MALLARD X GADWALL hybrid.  I've attached two photos of it.  While I was counting birds someone noticed 3 swans flying south in formation with some Canada Geese.  I couldn't get my scope on them in time to tell if they were Mute Swans or Tundra/Trumpeter Swans.  I still need the latter two for my Jackson Park life list.  An adult RED-TAILED HAWK was circling high above the harbor, with a 2 crow escort, of course. There were a few DARK-EYED JUNCOS feeding under a small tree within the marina fence.  As usual, I found no uncommon or rare gulls here.
After brunch in Whiting, Indiana we checked the Whiting Refinery Beach but there was virtually nothing there.  On to Wolf Lake.  When we first got there most of the non-Mute Swans were asleep.  Eventually, a few TRUMPETER SWANS raised there heads.  We found an immature swan that might be the Tundra.  It was asleep and, because of its position and that of the swans next to it, we couldn't be sure of its size.  Finally, something caused it and the swan next to it to stand up and it was obviously a smaller TUNDRA SWAN next to a bigger Trumpeter.  I counted 13 Trumpeters, 30 Mutes and 5 Trumpeter/Mute Swans that never raised their heads while I was looking.  Jennie S. and I checked the alders for Redpolls but found none.
Here's my full list with the following abbreviations, WI/BM=Wooded Island/Bobolink Meadow, OH=outer harbor, LM=Lake Michigan east of La Rabida/outer harbor, WL=Wolf Lake:

Canada Goose: WI/BM (52), OH (575), WL (200)
Mute Swan: WL (30)
Trumpeter Swan: WL (13)
Tundra Swan: WL (1)
swan sp: OH (3), WL (5)
Mallard: OH (30), WL (3)
Mallard x Gadwall hybrid: OH (1)
Canvasback: OH (2), WL (10)
Redhead: OH (5), WL (7)
Greater/Lesser Scaup: WL (1)
Common Goldeneye: WI/BM (1), OH ( 8 ), OH (9)
Red-breasted Merganser: WI/BM (2), OH (6), LM (10)
Red-tailed Hawk: OH (1)
A. Coot: OH (1), WL (15)
Ring-billed Gull: WI/BM (1), OH (70), WL (1)
Herring Gull: OH (14, + 1 at IH), WL (1)
Downy Woodpecker: WI/BM (2)
Hairy Woodpecker: WI/BM (1)
A. Crow: WI/BM (2), OH (3), WL (6)
Black-capped Chickadee: WI/BM (5), OH (1)
White-breasted Nuthatch: WI/BM (1)
Dark-eyed Junco: OH (3)
N. Cardinal: WI/BM (2)
A. Goldfinch: WI/BM (4)
House Sparrow: OH (5)

Randy Shonkwiler
Hyde Park/Chicago


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