The weather was cold and wet this morning but the upbeat attitudes and great conversation made this walk very pleasant and fun. We started off the day with some American goldfinches feasting on wild sunflowers, and even though they were flitting about we still managed to get everyone some good views of the male with his bright yellow feathers starting to fade into his more drab winter plumage. In fact, we get asked all the time in the store if goldfinches migrate, but the truth is, goldfinches are found in Boulder County year round- only in winter they are in disguise!
As we continued down the hill towards the bridge, lots of wet birds were seen through the scope- northern flickers, American kestrels, mourning doves, and even a pair of adult bald eagles with their highly vocal juvenile offspring. We were also treated to a flock of blue-winged teal, a belted kingfisher, and a solitary sandpiper, all viewed from the first bridge. Further along we had a great blue heron, cliff and barn swallows, and a double crested cormorant. We finished off the day with a Cooper’s hawk at a distance- this provided us with a great opportunity to practice raptor identification.
Although on this walk we didn’t see that many species, a good time was still had by all. At the very least it was a great demonstration of the high performance of the Zeiss Gavia spotting scope even on a rainy day, still providing us crisp detail and bright colors despite the low light due to the sky being overcast. Come visit our Boulder location to try out the Gavia for yourselves!
Blue winged teal
Great blue heron
Double Crested Cormorant