Monday, September 16, 2019

Motoring Monday - Bird watching across Kansas

The Wetlands & Wildlife National Scenic Byway in Barton, Stafford and Reno counties
in central Kansas has lots of areas to watch birds.
Bird watching is a big pastime in Kansas. The state has two important stopover sites for migrating birds and has recorded more than 460 bird species, making it the 16th most popular bird state in the country, according to the Audubon website.
The top two places to see birds includes the Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area and the Quivira National Wildlife Refuge. The spring and fall migration times are especially good for seeing a variety of birds pass through the state.
The Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area is
the largest wetland in the interior U.S.
The Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area is a central flyaway for millions of birds. This Kansas wetland area is the largest in the interior U.S. with 41,000 acres. Some 320 species of birds frequent Cheyenne Bottoms, including the Bald Eagle, Whooping Crane, Peregrine Falcon, Least Tern and Piping Plover.
The Quivira National Wildlife Refuge includes more than 22,000 acres and is managed primarily to provide migratory birds with food, water and shelter. More than 300 species of birds have been seen on the refuge at different times of the year.
According to the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, there are lots of great spots to watch birds. The top 10 locations are:
1 - Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area
2 - Quivira National Wildlife Refuge
3 - Cimarron National Grassland
4 - Baker Wetlands Research and Natural Area
5 - Gypsum Hills Scenic Byway
6 - Historic Lake Scott State Park and Wildlife Area
7 - Marais des Cygnes Wildlife Area
8 - Konza Prairie Biological Station
9 - Toronto Reservoir, Cross Timbers State Park and Toronto Wildlife Area
10 - Wilson Reservoir, State Park and Wildlife Area
State parks are also great places to see birds. According to KDWPT, in the late winter, Lovewell Reservoir, State Park and Wildlife Area can host up to one million snow geese in flocks large enough to be seen on weather radar.


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