The theme of this field trip will be wintering and migrant waterfowl, water birds, eagles, owls, and woodcock. Join us for this afternoon to dusk field trip as we explore and bird the lower Great Miami and Whitewater River valleys. We will begin in the Oxbow and end up at the Shaker Trace Wetlands at Miami Whitewater Forest. Depending on time, several stops will be made along the way at Lost Bridge, Kilby Ponds, Campbell Lakes, Fernald Preserve and a couple of gravel pits. We will end up at the Shaker Trace wetlands just before dusk.
Our trip leader, Jack Stenger, is a skilled and veteran birder, naturalist and lifetime ASO advocate. Jack has tremendous bird finding skills and he has been birding these areas since he was a kid. Jack plans to bird the Oxbow first and then move up to Lost Bridge. Waterfowl should be plentiful and Bald eagles are expected. Continuing from there, we will caravan upriver, making a few quick stops before we arrive at Fernald Preserve. We will end the trip at dusk at the Shaker Trace, where we hope to find Short-eared Owls and expect to see and hear displaying American Woodcock.
Jack expects to find many species of waterfowl (ducks, geese and swans) as well as other water birds such as gulls, grebes, coots etc. Bald Eagles and other raptors, including Northern Harriers, should be easily found as well as numbers of wintering and early migrant songbirds.
This trip will consist mostly of driving from spot to spot and spending some time at each location looking for birds. Be warned, it will likely be cold and damp so wear good waterproof footwear and dress warmly. Binoculars will be necessary if you expect to see birds well. If you have scopes, bring them. Restroom stops will be made. This trip will end when darkness falls, around 7:00 PM. Severe weather will likely cancel this trip. If you have any questions feel free to contact Jack.
Directions to our meeting spot:
To reach the upper Oxbow parking area from I-275, take the Lawrenceburg, Indiana exit # 16. At US 50, turn left (south). In about 200 yards, turn left (east) at the edge of the Shell/Subway and go over the levee to where the road T’s with a fence directly in front of you. Turn right and go to the Oxbow entrance sign. Turn left into the Oxbow. The upper parking area is immediately on the right.