Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Barr Lake

Connie and I ran up to Barr Lake State Park in Adams County a week ago Friday, back when it was sunny and 60 degrees. One of the nice things about Barr Lake are the great views of the Front Range when you look west across the lake. I framed a Fourteener, Long's Peak, in this view.

I think I have mentioned before that Barr Lake is a local birding hot spot, and one of the main attractions is the Bald Eagles that winter here.  I was busy with the camera, but Connie counted nine while we were there. Most were juveniles, and you can see an adult and a juvenile in this picture.

I find it interesting to watch them hanging out on the ice on the edges of open water looking for fish as these two are doing. One eagle left a half-eaten carp on the ice that was scavenged by some gulls.

Another interesting thing we saw there was a flock of 100-120 Northern Pintail ducks. I'm not the most experienced with waterfowl, but I had only seen Pintails before as a minority mix-in with larger groups of Mallards and other duck species. Here the Pintails were the majority with a small mix-in of Mallards and Green-winged Teal.

This crowd was hanging out with about an equal number of Canada geese in the shallows along the lakeshore. 

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