Monday, January 5, 2015

Dec 28, 2014: Erv's Field Notes #77

Swans on the Ice. 12/29/14 (LaDan Omidvar)

Sunday, December 28, 2014, 1:00-2:00 pm., clear and sunny, no wind, no snow cover, temperature 30 degrees F.
The lakes and ponds are nearly completely frozen over. The south lake has some small areas of open water on the southwest corner. Ice on the lakes has been highly variable this winter. A cold front is slowly moving into the state and we will see nighttime temperatures in the single digits for the next several days. Today, geese and ducks were spread out over the south lake, most of them sleeping on the ice. It was a beautiful picturesque sight. I counted 23 Trumpeter Swans including one with a red neckband; this color-marked swan has been a regular visitor this winter. We have had more Trumpeter Swans at the park this year than any other previous year. On Saturday, December 20, the day of the Ames Christmas Bird Count, a record 48 Trumpeters were present. Today, I estimated 5000 Canada Geese, a few dozen Cackling Geese, and a few hundred Mallards. I also noted a single “domestic” goose among the flock.

Erv Klaas

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