Had a most awesome day of birding today! My dad(Nathan) and I went out chasing two rare birds that had recently been seen in the state.  Our targets were Snowy Owl near Barr Lake and Long-tailed Duck(Oldsquaw) at Duck Lake in Denver's City Park.
We started out chasing the Snowy Owl.  After about an hour of driving through the fields, we failed to see it and decided to head down to City Park.  While we were looking for the owl, we did see Ferrugious Hawk, Northern Harrier and Bald Eagle.
At City Park we found the Long-tailed Duck pretty easily.  This is a VERY rare bird for Colorado.  We were able to watch it for our entire time birding the lake.  It was mingling with Common Goldeneye, Bufflehead, Ring-necked Duck and a female Barrow's Goldeneye.  The Long-tailed Duck was my 297th Life Bird and the Barrow's Goldeneye was my 298th.  I was very excited to see my first Bufflehead of the year, as the Bufflehead is my second all time favorite bird.  We also saw Cackling Goose, Gadwall, Redhead, Northern Shoveler, Cooper's Hawk, American Wigeon and Hooded Merganser at Duck Lake.  We had a blast watching the Mergansers. We saw a female and a male. At one point, the female caught a crayfish, and the male harassed her for the better part of 5 minutes trying to steal the prize away from her.  After much chasing around the lake, the female finally succeeded in devouring the crayfish, after which, the male contented himself to sit on a log.  A few short seconds later, an American Coot chased the merganser off the log.  All in all, it was a most outstanding day of birding, one that I will remember for a long time.
-For all of you who have been to my YouTube channel and have been wondering why I do not have a COBirdingVid or much other material up, here is the answer...my computer  won't let me install my editing program. Alas, I have tried installing it from the disk, downloading it from online, and it won't work.  So it may be a little while yet till I have a COBirdingVid up.  I will continue to post bird videography videos though, a White-breasted Nuthatch will be the next video I upload.

-I made my first birding trip of the year on Friday, went to my local haunt: Standley Lake.  Was a very fun little trip.  Saw a Song Sparrow minutes into my walk.  I was really hoping to get American Tree Sparrow(love those little guys!) and some waterfowl on this trip, so those were my targets.  Shortly after seeing the Song Sparrow, a lone American Tree Sparrow landed in a bush not 10 feet from me.  After some wonderful, close-up views of one of my favorite little birds, another soon joined it's company.  A Common Goldeneye(one of my favorite waterfowl species) soon grabbed my attention and I enjoyed watching him dive on reappear for a few minutes.  A scan of the lake revealed American Coot and Ring-billed Gulls.  I did another scan farther out and discovered a Common Merganser hanging out on the lake, a very nice surprise.  I started walking along the shore, admiring the ice formations that had been pushed up against the shore.  I then meandered over to the trail up the gazebo.  No sooner had I set foot on the trail then I saw a hawk dive and disappear behind the ridge at the top of the trail.  The prairie dogs scattered and I stood, ready to spot it should it reappear.  Seconds later the hawk roared over the top of the ridge, took a sharp turn right and sailed a few feet over the ground to a resting spot on the top of the ridge, perfectly backdropped by a clear, blue sky.  It was a Ferruginous Hawk.  That will always be one of my most memorable birding experiences.  I walked up the trail to the gazebo and then went back to my car.  I picked up Mourning Dove and House Sparrow along the way, and spotted a pair of coyotes farther out in the park.
Today was a miserably fun CBC at Roxburough Canyon State Park.  Miserable because the whole day was spent out in freezing wind, fun because we saw many neat birds and had a very awesome and fun group to bird with! We had seven people in our group, including our awesome last-minute-group-leader Leanne(sorry if I spelled that wrong!) and also some fairly new to birding members! Hope this count encouraged them all to pursue this awesome hobb  In all, we saw 23 species, including Northern Shrike, Prairie Falcon, Golden Eagle and Bald Eagle(2).  I was able to do a lot of photography with Black-capped Chickadees at the park's nature center.  This is a location I would love to get back to in the summer.
The CBC on Dec. 17 was a blast! Our group leader was Lynn Wilcoxson.  Our group totaled six people, including my dad and myself.  Our Count area included Deer Creek Canyon Park, South Valley Park, the Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield and Shield M Ranch, which made for a fun area to bird.  We tallied 29 different species on the count, including Golden Eagle at Deer Creek Canyon Park, a Pine Siskin at feeders near South Valley Park, a Cackling Goose at the Botanic Gardens and all three Colorado nuthatches.  The birding was pretty slow throughout the day, but was still fun.  
After the count, on our way home, my dad and I stopped by the lake in the Candelas area(just west of Stanley Lake and northwest of the Indiana St. and Hwy. 72 intersection.).  We were very happy we did.  We found two Tundra Swans(rare in Colorado) on the lake, along with a multitude of other waterfowl including a late season Double Crested Cormorant, Bufflehead, Ruddy Duck, Lesser Scaup, Common Goldeneye, Gadwall, Redhead and American Wigeon.  At the end of the day, my dad and I had compiled a day list of 42 species, which is a decent accomplishment in Colorado in this season.  
Keep watching the blog and site as I will have pics posted soon and I am starting to work on a COBirdingVid to get uploaded to YouTube as the first video for Bird Spy Films.  I will post a link when it's up=)
Happy birding everyone and hope you all are getting out there and having fun with the Christmas Bird Counts!
Tis the Christmas season and guess what that means! Christmas Bird Counts!! I can't wait. My dad and I are signed up for two in  our area.  We will be heading to Chatfield State Park on Dec. 17 and Roxburough Canyon State Park on the 31st.  
Be sure to check with local birding societies in your area and get out and participate in this awesome event! You won't be disappointed!
I have participated on two over the last three years, birding throughout the  Lakewood area including Bear Creak Greenbelt and other areas two years ago, and birding Valmont Reservoir three years ago. 
Went up to Wyoming for two days last week for a funeral.  Birding was good for it being winter and not a birding oriented trip.  Saw just over 20 species, including Sandhill Crane(life bird for me. Flock of about 100), Golden Eagle, Bald Eagle, Ferruginous Hawk, and an unknown falcon species.  Over the course of the trip we totaled about 15 different Golden Eagles and 3 Bald Eagles.  
Saw a Golden Eagle yesterday! And saw a Bald Eagle earlier this week.  This has been a good week so far. Also have seen Brown Creeper, Gadwall and Prairie Falcon.  Can't wait to get out and bird someplace.
Winter has come and so have the winter birds! Keep your eyes out on open water for a great diversity of ducks, including Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Scaup and more! Be keen on the possible rarity that might show up!