Sunrise at Conneaut (Photo courtesy Robert Lane)

The Avids started an ambitious agenda from the usual Worthington Mall location at 5:30 am with just one carload of birders. Two of the birders were first timers to the Avids.

We headed for Conneaut and the famous sandspit, hoping to discover a rarity. Arriving just before 9:00 am, we found the beach already occupied by a number of other birders. We enjoyed watching semipalmated plovers, pectoral, least and semipalmated sandpipers at close range, being able to carefully study the identifying characteristics of each. Bald eagles perched nearby and flew overhead, along with an osprey, ring billed and herring gulls and a common tern.

Sunrise at Conneaut (Photo courtesy Robert Lane) The Conneaut Sandspit (Photo courtesy Robert Lane)
Trumpter Swan Pectoral Sandpiper

Black-bellied Whistling Ducks (Photo courtesy Robert Lane)After a brief stop for lunch, snacks, and restrooms, we headed for the Grand River Wildlife area in Trumbull County, a new location for the Avids. We were able to locate the black-bellied whistling ducks first reported the previous day. A trumpeter swan was in the nearby dike. We were joined by Robert and Denise Lane who helped us locate red-headed woodpeckers. We enjoyed a prothonatary warbler, redstart, and scarlet tanager in the parking lot. A yellow-billed cuckoo was spotted in the tree tops.

Eurasian Collared DoveAs we headed to our next stop in Holmes County, one of our first timers, who was also driving, asked about Eurasian collared doves. Since the birds were in Kidron, which was not that far, we decided to try for a second reportable species and a life bird for the newbies. Our efforts were rewarded with 2 Eurasian collared doves behind Kidron’s Pizza. Since it was dinnertime, we decided to celebrate our success with pizza. We also walked across the street to the restrooms at the famous Lehman’s Hardware while the pizzas were being prepared. We enjoyed our pepperoni pizza in the car due to a torrential downpour.

We headed for Wilderness Road in the rain, but the rain stopped on our arrival. The highlight here was 27 sandhill cranes in a field.

On receiving a report of American avocets at Hoover Reservoir in Columbus, we decided to try to see them before dark. Arriving at Hoover Dam around 8:00, we discovered 3 avocets swimming far out on the reservoir, requiring a scope for good views.

We tallied 70 birds for the day including the 2 reportable species. A great time was had by all. This was my first solo effort of leading a birding field trip, demonstrating my motto that the birds such provide the drama (not the birders).

Canada Geese
Trumpeter Swan
Black Bellied Whistling Duck
Double-Crested Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Green Heron
Turkey Vulture
Bald Eagle
Red-tailed Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk
Sandhill Crane
American Avocet
Semipalmated Plover
Spotted Sandpiper
Solitary Sandpiper
Lesser Yellowlegs
Least Sandpiper
Pectoral Sandpiper
Semipalmated Sandpiper
Ring-billed Gull
Herring Gull
Common Tern
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Eurasian Collared Dove
Yellow-billed Cuckoo
Chimney Swift
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Belted Kingfisher
Red-headed Woodpecker
Red bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Acadian Flycatcher
Eastern Wood-Pewee
Eastern Phoebe
Eastern Kingbird
Warbling Vireo
Blue Jay
American crow
Purple Martin
Tree Swallow
Bank swallow
Barn Swallow
Black-capped Chickadee
White-breasted nuthatch
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Eastern Bluebird
American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
Prothonotary Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
American Redstart
Yellow Warbler
Chipping Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Scarlet Tanager
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow