Tag Archives: Oxbow

January 100 Species Challenge/2013

Today starts my last week of rehabilitation from my knee surgery and everything seems to be OK other than being a little achy. And starting this week one of our bathrooms is going to be remodeled so having any opportunity to go birding will probably have to wait till the weekend, so I spent a good portion of yesterday morning and the afternoon birding with Jon and Jason. We covered Fernald Preserve, Lost Bridge Area and the Oxbow. We had a pretty productive day with the highlight coming while we were at the Oxbow. On the south side of Jackpot Pond there is a huge field. We discovered the largest flock of Horned Larks and Lapland Longspurs any of us have seen before. We’re talking 600 bird flock.

Challenge List:

  • #62- Great Horn Owl
  • #63- Sharp-shinned Hawk
  • #64-Eastern Meadowlark
  • #65- Savannah Sparrow
  • #66- Swamp Sparrow
  • #67- Wilson’s Snipe
  • #68- Northern Shoveler
  • #69- American Wigeon
  • #70- Bald Eagle
  • #71- American Pipit
  • #72- Killdeer
  • #73- Wild Turkey
  • #74- Eastern Phoebe
  • #75- American Black Duck
  • #76- Hairy Woodpecker

Remaining list of the bird count for the day include:

  1. Northern Harrier
  2. Red-tailed Hawk
  3. Red-shouldered Hawk
  4. American Kestrel
  5. Mute Swan
  6. American Coot
  7. Mallard
  8. Gadwall
  9. Green-winged Teal
  10. Canada Goose
  11. Northern Pintail
  12. Ring-necked Duck
  13. Ruddy Duck
  14. Redhead
  15. Great Blue Heron
  16. American Robin
  17. Carolina Wren Tufted Titmouse
  18. Carolina Chickadee
  19. American Crow
  20. Mourning Dove
  21. Pigeon
  22. Blue Jay
  23. Song Sparrow
  24. White-throated Sparrow
  25. White-crowned Sparrow
  26. Horned lark
  27. Lapland Longspur
  28. Rong-billed gull
  29. White-breasted Nuthatch
  30. Yellow-rumped warbler
  31. Eastern Goldfinch
  32. Northern Mockingbird
  33. Northern cardinal
  34. Tree Sparrow
  35. Eastern Towhee
  36. Pileated Woodpecker
  37. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  38. Downy Woodpecker
  39. Dark-eyed Junco


Notes From The Field

Now that I know what a shut-in might feel like, Phil suggested a little field trip to see how my knee holds up, or to quote Phil a little “Ornithological Therapy”. What we were looking for was do some birding without putting too much stress on my knee. Driving from one destination to another and do a little birding at each location. And since I was able to pick the locations I naturally picked Lost Bridge, Shawnee Lookout Boat Ramp, Shawnee Lookout Park, and the Oxbow.

We arrived at Lost Bridge at 10:00 am and with the recent rain the river had covered most of the mud flats that has been ever present during most of the Summer. As with Lost Bridge and all the other places we visited today, I was just happy to get outside and do some birding even if the birds weren’t all that spectacular.

From there we went to the canoe access at Shawnee Lookout Park where I thought we might get into some migrant warbler action. The Sun by now had come up and was starting to warm the air, and with hope the birds. It was a little disappointing that we found no warblers and very little of anything else. It was becoming clear that we were going to have to work hard for the birds today. Later Phil said that it would be nice if we had St. Francis of Assisi with us so he could summon any bird we wanted. Somehow taking advantage of a patron saint could lead to a great day list, but at what cost. I may not be Catholic, but I do know not to mess with a Saint.

Shawnee Lookout was pretty quiet as my knee was beginning to ache a little, so our last stop was to be the Oxbow.

Tree Swallows were skimming the water at Oxbow lake as I was able to capture this stationary male.

A small section of a large group of Great Egrets and a few great Blue Herons on the opposite bank of Oxbow Lake.

Immature Double-crested Cormorant.

As we were leaving the Oxbow you drive by one of the casinos in Lawrenceburg Indiana and you drive parallel to a flood wall that separates the Oxbow from the city. It’s from the top of the flood wall that I snapped this next picture of these 4 Double-crested Cormorants on a log.

It was a much needed outing and with hope the beginning to a full recovery. I would have loved to have stayed longer but I really didn’t want to over exert myself and wind up back on the couch with my leg elevated. There’s plenty more birds out there and a lot more Autumn left to go.

Notable birds for the day include:

  1. Northern Cardinal
  2. Tufted Titmouse
  3. Red-winged Blackbird
  4. Carolina Chickadee
  5. Carolina Wren
  6. Downy Woodpecker
  7. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  8. Belted Kingfisher
  9. Killdeer
  10. Pectoral Sandpiper
  11. Spotted Sandpiper
  12. Bald Eagle
  13. Red-tailed Hawk
  14. American Kestrel
  15. Turkey Vulture
  16. Common Crow
  17. Rock Dove
  18. Mourning Dove
  19. Canada Goose
  20. Great Blue Heron
  21. Great Egret
  22. Mallard
  23. Blue-wing Teal
  24. Northern Shoveler
  25. Blue Jay
  26. Gray Catbird
  27. White-breasted Nuthatch
  28. ? Flycatcher
  29. Eastern Phoebe
  30. Double-crested Cormorant
  31. Song Sparrow
  32. Magnolia Warbler
  33. Palm Warbler
  34. Yellow-rumped Warbler
  35. American Goldfinch

Notes From The Field

Oxbow and Lost Bridge

With the prospect of a total washout this Labor day weekend from the remnants of Hurricane Issac, I gathered my gear and stashed it in my truck before heading off to work today. This way I have a bit of a head start on my trip over to the Oxbow. I was hoping with this low pressure system pushing North that some of the migrants will stick around and I could catch them at the Oxbow. Despite this sound reasoning the shore birds at both locations were pretty lack luster.

Except for 2 lone fishermen the Oxbow was practically empty. Birds were distant and getting close only spooked them off so trying to get any kind of picture was impossible. I’ve come to the conclusion that I know what I’m capable of when it comes to digiscoping, and I’m not going to put just any picture on the blog if it’s not acceptable by my standards.

Oxbow Lake and Jackpot Pond were the 2 bodies of water I was most interested in today. Jockeying to get the bird-mobile close enough to where the birds were congregated can be difficult at the Oxbow, and with only a few pull-offs it means for the birder hiking in to get closer to the choice birds. Being tired from a full day work and with my knee bothering me a little I opted to keep the longer walks to a minimum.

The fact that you can drive through the Oxbow is what makes it attractive for me. Drive a little, pull over if you see something good, then jump back in to drive to the next location. And when you exit from the Oxbow you’re right next to one of those Indiana casinos and a nice overlook to Jackpot Pond.

The birds seen were pretty normal with a few exceptions. I witnessed a huge flock of Red-winged Blackbirds fly over. A rough estimate would be in the thousands. I saw a nice fly over of a immature Bald Eagle, which are always nice to see. And a surprise were 2 Black-crowned Night Herons pretty close to the road. So I backed up the truck to be out of their eye sight, went behind the truck to retrieve my scope to get a picture, to be left standing there watching them fly away. BUMMER

Leaving the Oxbow I made my way back into Ohio to Lost Bridge. It was here that I ran into 3 birders I knew who were on their way back from Goose Pond and stopped for a quick go over before heading home. Lost Bridge was pretty much a flop. I was able to spy some Peeps in the distance but not much of anything else.

The day was wearing on, and I was worn out, so it was time to quit and head for the barn.

Notable birds for the day include:

  1. Least Sandpiper
  2. Killdeer
  3. Pectoral Sandpiper
  4. Lesser Yellowleg
  5. Great Blue Heron
  6. Great Egret
  7. Green Heron
  8. Black-crowned Night Heron
  9. Belted Kingfisher
  10. Red-tailed Hawk
  11. Red-shouldered Hawk
  12. Bald Eagle
  13. Mourning Dove
  14. Red-winged Blackbird
  15. American Goldfinch
  16. Song Sparrow
  17. American Crow
  18. Turkey Vulture
  19. Black Vulture
  20. Mallard
  21. Wood Duck
  22. Canada Goose
  23. Double-crested Cormorant
  24. Tree Swallow
  25. Northern Rough-winged Swallow
  26. Downy Woodpecker
  27. Northern Cardinal
  28. American Robin

Notes From The Field/ # 321

The Oxbow (Jackpot Pond)

I took a chance today and headed over to the Oxbow after work today and see if I could spot the Neotropic Cormorant that has been seen there for the last 24 hours. And with a recent sighting of noon today I thought my chances were just about as good as the next persons.

I arrived at about 5:30 despite rush hour traffic and made my way back towards the last spot it was sighted. I came upon Allan Claybon who was looking for the bird as well. We talked for a few minutes before I drove on towards the lake overlook. Nothing but 2 DC Cormorants. Before I left Allan he did tell me that he saw some more DC Cormorants from the top of the flood wall just outside of the casino. So I made my way over and set up my scope.

The only Cormorants I saw were these 3 that were perched on this log. However just behind these birds were a line of dead trees and 2 more cormorants, and one of them really looks like my target bird.

However from this angle i wasn’t getting the clear view I wanted to make a positive ID. So I jumped back into the bird-mobile and returned to the Oxbow. Pulling off to the side of the road I hiked along a soy bean field and a line of trees that separated me from the lake. I was able to get a picture of what i thought was the bird, however when I looked closely at it, I decided it wasn’t the target bird.

About ready to give up I started to drive home when I noticed a group of Cormorants roosting in some trees along the back of Jackpot Pond. And that’s where I saw the bird and took the first picture. Have the Neotropic Cormorant next to a DC Cormorant was ideal when you can have side by side comparison. The picture doesn’t do the bird justice when field marks are the key in differentiating between the 2 bird species. I needed a new bird for the year and now I do.

Rare Bird Alert

A report of a Neotropical Cormorant being sighted at the main Oxbow lake late this afternoon. The bird in question was with Double-crested Cormorants so a comparative size difference was noticed. Hope it sticks around, I need this one.

Upcoming Events

Doing a little cruising through the internet today revealed that Oxbow Inc. has put together some late and mid Summer field trips. Here are the 4 dates of the field trips, however if you need more details go to the calendar section of Cincinnatibirds for more details.

July 15th @ 8am

July 28th @ 5pm

August 18th @ 8am

September 16th @ 8am

All field trips participants should meet at the parking lot as you enter the Oxbow.