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New Year's Dallas camping and birding trip

14 years ago

We decided on Monday to drive to Dallas, so after work on Wed. we drove all night and set up our tent at 2:30 p.m. in freezing rain next to Joe Pool Lake, Cedar Hill State Park. DuBois crawled into the tent for a nap, then we attended a cool New Year's Eve swing dance/buffet nearby. When we returned around 1 a.m., the Blue Moon was shining in a clear sky. It was so bright, not to mention only 20 degrees, that we pulled the cover over the screen tent.

The next morning we had trouble keeping on our feet since the road was a sheet of ice in front of the bath house but a flock of Chickadees and Tufted Titmice came by and I was able to get photos of a couple of hangers-on

1-1-10, Cedar Hill State Park, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, 11:26 a.m.
{{gwi:1355755}}From Christmas 2009

From Christmas 2009

1-1-10, Bewick's Wren
{{gwi:1355757}}From Christmas 2009

From Christmas 2009

There was another Ruby-crowned Kinglet in the brush near the lake bank

From Christmas 2009

We visited old friends and family in the area that afternoon and the next morning there was another Ruby-crowned Kinglet cutey in the brush near the campsite. I was disappointed that the only birds were saw were the same ones I see around our house in Morehead. But I could see American Coots far out on the lake
{{gwi:1355760}}From Christmas 2009

We drove 50 miles to the Ft Worth Nature Center and Refuge marshland hoping to see the many species we saw there in February five years ago. We could see flocks of Double-crested Cormorants and various duck species flying overhead as we drove across the city, but when we arrived, aside from a Marsh Wren,
{{gwi:1355761}}From Christmas 2009

we saw no birds while out on the boardwalk except some distant ducks on the river and a Great Egret flapping past.
{{gwi:1355762}}From Christmas 2009

We took a trail into the woods that paralleled the marsh and I cut down to the bank and hid in the brush. In a minute a flock of Green-winged Teals flew in and landed nearby. I could just glimpse them through the tangle of branches
{{gwi:1355763}}From Christmas 2009

1-2-09, Ft. Worth Nature Center marshland, male Green-winged Teal

From Christmas 2009

{{gwi:1355765}}From Christmas 2009

pair of Green-winged Teals
{{gwi:1355766}}From Christmas 2009

Suddenly DuBois' cell phone began blasting rock music (he'd waited for me on the trail above), then he began talking! The entire flock exploded out of the water was gone in seconds. I laughed and once again suggested he keep his phone on "vibrate" and move away from the area to answer his phone

So we sat down on a bench on the woodland trail and watched the Chickadee flocks sweep past with their hangers-on.

Another Ruby-crowned Kinglet-it came so close I could have tossed a leaf on it
{{gwi:1355767}}From Christmas 2009

female Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

From Christmas 2009

as we came around a bend we saw a 1rst winter Eastern Phoebe
{{gwi:1355771}}From Christmas 2009

then drove to the information center where we saw a female Red-winged Blackbird

From Christmas 2009

1-2-09, Barred Owl, Ft. Worth Nature Center display
{{gwi:1355775}}From Christmas 2009

then drove to the Black-tailed Prairie Dog town. They gave cries that sounded like Red-shouldered Hawks
{{gwi:1355777}}From Christmas 2009

As we left there were two American Bison bulls grazing in the prairie area

From Christmas 2009
{{gwi:1355780}}From Christmas 2009

By then it was 5 pm so we drove all night and got home at 12:30 p.m. The number and variety of species seen was a bit disappointing so we promised each other to drive down again in March during migration

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