21 January 2021

Archive for January, 2021

Warm Winter

Wednesday, January 20th, 2021
Juniper Titmouse, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 20 January 2021.
Juniper Titmouse.

This winter’s been warm here so far. That’s what I gather at least—it being only my second winter in Salt Lake City—and I know from observation that we’ve seen very little snow and maybe only one or two overnights with lows in the teens (F).

This morning’s temperature had hit the mid-20s when dog and I started up the trail. A cloudless sky for the second straight day. Mostly the usual bird suspects (the funnest being a pair of Juniper Titmice). On our return, when the sun topped the ridge, the temperature rose to the point that my scarf made my neck to warm—and got up into the 40s by mid-afternoon.

However, this historic Inauguration Day, our brand new President took the first steps toward treating anthropogenic climate change seriously again. Which is good news for our survival on this tilted planet of ours.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 9 a.m. (MST), I hiked several hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
2. House Finch* (v)
3. Black-billed Magpie*
4. Dark-eyed Junco
5. Rock Pigeon*
6. Black-capped Chickadee (v)
7. Spotted Towhee
8. Pine Siskin (v)
9. Juniper Titmouse
10. European Starling*

Elsewhere

11. American Robin

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

Tracks

Tuesday, January 19th, 2021
Bobcat tracks, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 19 January 2021.
Bobcat tracks.
Bobcat tracks, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 19 January 2021.
Detail of bobcat tracks.

Unexpected (by me) snow later yesterday left about a powdery coating of about an inch on everything this morning. On which all kinds of critters had left their tracks.

Not many birds today, but a whole mess of animal tracks. Cottontails (as usual), voles (or mice), even a deer or two—plus, what I’m pretty sure was the trail of a bobcat. First I noticed the lack of claw marks. Then (with some relief) I saw their smallish size. Then the fact that the animal had a diagonal gait (back feet land atop the front foot tracks), and its front paws were a bit larger than the back.

I could be wrong—still kind of new at this—but, as a birder, I do love a good puzzle of observation.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 9:29 a.m. (MST), I hiked several hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay (v)
2. Black-billed Magpie*
3. Spotted Towhee
4. Dark-eyed Junco**
5. Rock Pigeon*
6. House Finch* (v)
7. Northern Flicker*
8. Sharp-shinned Hawk

Elsewhere

12. Black-capped Chickadee
11. Song Sparrow

Mammals

Red Squirrel (v)

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

Flickers

Monday, January 18th, 2021
Pair of Northern Flickers, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 18 January 2021.
Pair of Northern Flickers.

A lovely hike with dog this morning—a hike under mostly overcast skies, and with very light snow falling. About freezing, hardly a breeze, not many birds about. Tried to track a flicker down, but it was calling from too far away.

However, in afternoon, back home, I heard one out the window and, lo, two were perched in a tree out back. They posed for photos before flying away.

More snow tonight (rather surprisingly), but not too much. Will be a whitened hike in the morning.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 9:05 a.m. (MST), I hiked several hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
2. Black-billed Magpie* (v)
3. Rock Pigeon*
4. Spotted Towhee
5. Northern Flicker* (v)
6. Dark-eyed Junco
7. Black-capped Chickadee (v)
8. Eurasian Collared-dove
9. House Finch* (v)
10. Pine Siskin (v)

Elsewhere

12. American Robin
11. European Starling

Mammals

Red Squirrel (v)

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

 
Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson



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