8:00 a.m.

Field Trip Leader: Louise Flenner

Every year for the past 10 years I have counted the number of herons at the rookery on March 15. There are always some returning birds on that date. When I started counting herons there were two rookeries. Gradually fewer and fewer birds returned to the rookery that was on higher ground.  In 2023 only 2 nests remain there and neither one was occupied by herons. A red-tailed hawk took over one of the nests. There are, however, 11 nests downstream in a delightfully active rookery along Gans Creek.

On this field trip I would like to get a count of returning herons. We will also bird the tree line between GCRA and Gans Creek Wilderness Area.  There is some good birding in the woods that separates the two rookeries. There are 6 ponds and Gans Creek that may attract some migrating birds.

Access to the active rookery is via an overgrown path that descends a steep hillside.

Meet in the Gans Creek Recreation Area parking lot at 8:00 a.m. The park is on E Gans Creek Road, about 1 mile west of the US 63 Discovery Parkway exit. Click for a map.