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Date:         Sat, 13 Jan 2007 21:03:00 -0500
Reply-To:     "James F. Flynn Jr." <jim.flynn@MINDSPRING.COM>
Sender:       Georgia Birders Online <GABO-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From:         "James F. Flynn Jr." <jim.flynn@MINDSPRING.COM>
Subject:      Northwest GA, 1/13/2007 (Red-necked Grebe)
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Hi, folks, Earl Horn and I birded Bartow Co. and Carters Lake today. (I'll start from the end first.) We ended the day with Chuck Saleeby at the Woodring Branch Rec Area, Carters Lake, where there was a Red-necked Grebe across the lake from the boat ramp. We watched it for a couple of hours hoping that we could get decent pictures of it, but in the end could only manage some distant digi-scoped photos, a few sketches and lots of notes. Still, it was pretty cool to watch during that period time, especially since I don't get to see many of them this far south. The bird was still there when we left at about 17:30. The Woodring Branch boat ramp the is the little boat symbol closest to the Gilmer/Murray Co. line, DeLorme page 13, grid F-10, on the GILMER side of the county line.

We started the day in Mableton at the Williams' residence to see the female Broad-tailed Hummingbird, which was very obliging. Next, we spent an hour or so mid-morning looking for the Western Tanager at the Browns' residence in Powder Springs, with the same results that Steve Slayton did later in the day (i.e., we didn't see it).

Then we headed to Taff Rd. and Floyd Creek Church Rd., southwest Bartow Co., to see all of the cool stuff that has been reported from these locations over the past several weeks. Not much along Brandon Farm & Taff Rds., except for a flock of Gadwall and a male American Wigeon at one of the ponds along Taff Rd.

The two Greater White-fronted Geese were still at the pond along Floyd Creek Church Rd., as were 20 Sandhill Cranes and a few Brewer's Blackbirds. Ducks included Northern Pintail (1 female), American Black Duck (1), Green-winged Teal & Northern Shovelers, plus lots of Mallards.

Also at Floyd Creek Church Rd., there were three white morph Snow Geese (2 adults, one imm) here, and one possible adult Ross's X Snow Goose hybrid, which we studied for quite some time. The bird was rather large bodied but smaller than the Snow Geese that it accompanied, and it had a fairly short neck and round-headed appearance, smallish bill w/ gray patch at the base, and fairly straight border to the cheek and bill (but this was very difficult to say for sure). We couldn't get close enough to see for sure whether the bill had a grin patch or not, but if it did, it was reduced or very subtle. Still, even though the bird had many of the field marks that a Ross's should have, it was just too big, noticeably bigger than the Mallards and other ducks in the area. I suspect that if we could have approached the goose closer, we would have started to see some Snow Goose characteristics.

Next we made a stop at the Reregulation Dam and the Powerhouse at Carters Lake, which was pretty quiet. We did have one immature White-crowned Sparrow (in the field at the Powerhouse) and an adult Bald Eagle (seen across the Rereg Lake from the Powerhouse).

Take care,

Jim Flynn Forsyth Co., GA http://www.gos.org http://www.atlantaaudubon.org/ ******************************

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