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Kansas School Naturalist


KSN - Vol 7, No 3 - The Greatest Show on Earth

THE COVER PICTURE, an action photograph of a tufted titmouse, is used by courtesy of the National Audubon Society. This popular little bird is a common resident in eastern Kansas and may be seen occasionally throughout the state. A woodland bird, it has adjusted itself to man, nests in parks and street trees, and makes free use of bird baths and feeders in school and home yards. The lettering was done by Mr. J. Warren Brinkman, Assistant Professor of Art, who teaches Freehand Drawing, Graphic Arts, and related courses. The other pictures were taken by members of the biology staff, mostly incidental to field trips.

Volume 7, Number 3 - March 1961

The Greatest Show on Earth

by John Breukelman

ABOUT THIS ISSUE

Published by The Kansas State Teachers College of Emporia

Prepared and Issued by The Department of Biology, with the cooperation of the Division of Education

Editor: John Breukelman, Department of Biology

Editorial Committee: Ina M. Borman, Helen M. Douglass, Gilbert A. Leisman, David Parmelee, Dixon Smith

Online format by: Terri Weast

The Kansas School Naturalist is sent upon request, free of charge, to Kansas teachers and others interested in nature education. Back numbers are sent free as long as the supply lasts, except Vol. 5, No. 3, Poisonous Snakes of Kansas. Copies of this issue may be obtained for 25 cents each postpaid. Send orders to The Kansas School Naturalist, Department of Biology, Kansas State Teachers College, Emporia, Kansas.

The Kansas School Naturalist is published in November, January, March, and May of each year by The Kansas State Teachers Col­lege, Twelfth Avenue and Commercial Street, Emporia, Kansas. Second-class mail privileges authorized at Emporia, Kansas.


The Greatest Show on Earth

by John Breukelman

The idea for this number of The Kansas School Naturalist came from a group of students enrolled in a recent summer workshop in conservation. This group, most of whom were elementary teachers, set out to develop, as a workshop project, a finding chart for Kansas birds. Although they changed to another project which seemed more practical at the time, they left me the partially completed chart and the idea.

The title and the following paragraphs came from an article by Donald W. Douglass, in the May-June, 1958, issue of Michigan Conservation, published by the Michigan Department of Conservation, at Lansing. Dr. Douglass started the article with these words, "The Opening acts of the Greatest Show on Earth are well under way but you can still see the whole show if you have a ticket. It is the annual opening from winter quarters of Dame Nature's Show of Shows, featuring the Return of Spring, full dimensional, full color, and completely stereophonic! We would like to direct your attention to the mammoth center ring where the owner herself is displaying the greatest troupe of aerialists ever to be seen under the sky in the Pageant of the Birds!

It is too bad that so many people can't or won't afford a ticket, because they lack the eyes, the ears, and the perceptive minds required to get one. You and I and the other lucky people have a great treat in store all through April, May, and June, with plenty going on even after that if we care to remain for the complete program.

It's well to start our bird-watching early so that we can follow the unfolding pageant from near the beginning. To begin with we'll be occupied with learning the cast of characters, perhaps 200 in all. We'd better learn them as they come on stage, before the big ensemble numbers in May when even the experts get a little confused by it all."

I am indebted to Dr. Douglass for the title and for getting this issue of The Kansas School Naturalist off to a good start, and to Dr. David Parmelee, for help received, especially in the arrangement of the finding chart. Dr. Parmelee, Assistant Professor of Biology and member of the Editorial Committee, teaches Ornithology, Vertebrate Zoology, and related courses.

The show so vividly introduced by Dr. Douglass is no less spectacular in Kansas than in Michigan, and the tickets cost no more. In Kansas too, the show goes on through the whole year, but the grand entrance is in the spring when the migratory birds are moving from their winter homes to nesting quarters in their summer homes. April and May are the ideal months for the best views of birds. Whether migrants or residents, the newly arrived birds are brightly colored. They look like the pictures in books so are easily identified. (Fall migrants are less brightly colored and include many young birds that have not yet taken on their adult plumage. Many are confusing and hard to identify.) Most of the migrants going through Kansas can be seen for only a few days or weeks in the spring and fall.

The newly arrived residents do a lot of singing, as well as flying around looking for food and nesting sites. They act as though they are eager to start their summer's business-setting up their home territories, building nests, laying eggs, rearing young.

Good seats for the bird show are available everywhere; special acts can be seen in the woods, along streams, beside lakes, in shelter belts along the roadside. Extra-special acts are available at such places as the Marais des Cygnes Wildlife Refuge, the Great Salt Marsh, Cheyenne Bottoms, Frank Robl's refuge north of Ellinwood, and at many of the state, county, and city parks and lakes. Sometimes the best acts of all are in the back yard at home. For example, our back yard in Emporia (the part of it that can be seen from the living room) is about 3.5 x 12.5 feet, and there are, besides our own house, six others within 7.5 feet. In this space, surrounded by houses, playing children, pet cats and dogs, lawn mowers, and all the other signs of human residence I have seen 89 different species of birds, in the trees and shrubs, in the bird bath, about the feeders, and just flying around. A mere patch of open sky is visible from the window, but outlined against this patch I have spied such birds as the great blue heron and the herring gull. Of course 89 species out of the nearly 400 known to live in or pass through Kansas doesn't seem like so many-but it's a goodly number to be seen through a living room window.

The largest numbers and variety of birds in home yards may usually be seen during April and May, when the spring migration is in progress, but one cold day last March, after a heavy snow, we spotted 16 different species. The list of visitors that day included several not often seen in town. The attraction was no doubt the well stocked feeders, where grain and suet were available all day long. We saw not only the usual house sparrows, slate-colored juncos, downy woodpeckers, cardinals, starlings, chickadees, and robins, but also tree sparrows, red-bellied woodpeckers, Harris' sparrows, rusty blackbirds, meadowlarks, redwinged blackbirds, cowbirds, song sparrows, and Oregon juncos.

What is the price of a ticket to "The Greatest Show on Earth"? Just about what you want to pay. You will need a pair of field glasses (binoculars) -you can go to $200 or more on this, but it must be remembered that whatever you pay is the price of a life-time pass, because a pair of $200 field glasses or even $3.5 ones, if you take good care of them, will probably last as long as you will. Unless you know field glasses, get someone who does to advise you-most birders prefer 6 to 8 power, with a relative brightness of at least 25, center focusing, separate eye adjustment, light weight, and the ability to focus on objects as near as 10 to 12 feet. If you want to go far afield you will need an automobile, but you probably already have one. You may want a camera, and there is no limit to the cost on this item. You will need a bird book or perhaps several  - which ones will depend on you. A good one to start with in eastern Kansas is Peterson's A Field Guide to the Birds, which has come to be somewhat of a "Bible" to amateur birders. But you may prefer one or more of the other books listed among references on page 12.

Now you are ready to go. In many communities you can find a kindred soul already interested, who will be glad to suggest good birding places or even to go with you. But if you are on your own - O.K.

You can find birds almost anywhere - as you no doubt know, the edge of a shelterbelt is a better place to look than a busy city intersection. But one bright morning in Chicago, walking from Dearborn station to the Conrad Hilton Hotel I recorded more than 20 different species. Plenty of birds come into cities and towns-Riverside Park in Wichita, Gage Park in Topeka, Peter Pan and Hammond Parks in my own home town of Emporia, and comparable parks all over Kansas-you may be surprised. Then there are gardens, vacant lots, high school and college campuses, cemeteries. Farm woodlots, creeks, ponds or lakes, swampy areas, and roadside weed patches can be found most anywhere. The state parks and lakes are fine places to see birds, as are the big federal projects. An up-to-date list of these, together with information about camping facilities, may be obtained by writing the Kansas Forestry, Fish and Game Commission, Pratt, Kansas. Oftentimes birds congregate about farm ponds, especially those with some trees or shrubbery around. Small ponds may be particularly favorable places to see spring shore birds.

The finding chart on pages 13 to 15 will help you in your general study of Kansas birds. The chart is by no means complete, but it includes the most common birds and will give you some idea of what to expect. Reference to the chart will keep you from looking for lark buntings near Kansas City (The finding chart shows that these birds are found mainly in western Kansas.) or for house wrens in midwinter. (The chart lists house wrens in column 2, "mainly in summer.") You can add notations and corrections to the chart as you become more familiar with the birds of your own area. Use the chart only as a guide-not as an authority.

see caption belowAbove: A field group looking for birds and nests in a Stafford County bog
Below: A junior bird watcher keeping track of back-yard birds

 see caption below

A slate-colored junco using a homemade grain-feeder during a snowy morning

see caption below

Among the most spectacular nests in Kansas are those of the great blue heron. Sometimes a dozen or more nests, three feet or more in diameter, may be seen in one large tree - in this case a sycamore in Chase County.

see caption below

The barn swallow nest is built of "masonry" - mud reinforced with grasses and other fibers.

see caption below

Don't overlook bird photography as an interesting and instructive hobby

Young birds are particularly cooperativeif handled gently. Above: young redwinged blackbird; below : young bluewinged teal

see caption below

A car provides a good "blind" for roadside bird watching. Birds are often less disturbed by a car on the road than by people walking about.

see caption below

Hedge rows provide excellent places for roadside study, especially of the warblers and other spring migrants.

If you really want the best looking, be around where the birds are at daybreak. This may seem difficult, but the rewards justify the hardship. Early morning is the time of greatest activity with most birds. They are hungry, actively hunting for food, and less cautious than they are later in the day. They do more singing early in the morning; a lot of bird study is "by ear." Birds are often heard before they are seen. Also, the colors and color patterns are more easily seen early in the morning than later when the sun is higher in the sky. Move slowly, be as quiet as you can, and try to view the birds in direct light, that is, with the sun behind you. If you can find a place eastward of the edge of a pond or along a hedge row and find a fallen log or large stone to sit on, you have the best seat for the bird show.

If you have any of the feeling that there is something a little queer about a bird watcher, consider the duck hunter. He thinks nothing at all of getting up at three o'clock on a chilly rainy morning, crawling on all fours or even on his tummy to a duck blind or to the edge of a farm pond, to get perhaps one shot at a duck-and he is considered perfectly normal! Anyway, normal or not, you will be in a class with hunters, fishermen, drag racers, stamp collectors, coin collectors, rock hounds, golfers, amateur gardeners, or any other hobbyist who likes to put some of his effort where he enjoys it. And, unlike the hunter or fisherman, you will not have to wait for an open season, because the bird-watching season is open twelve months every year, even though the hunting and finding are better at some seasons than at others.

What is the big appeal of bird watching? Perhaps only that birds can fly and so cross barriers that stop other animals. Perhaps it is only that bird watching takes us outdoors and centers our attention on the natural aspects of the outdoors, instead of buildings, roads, TV towers, billboards, and other symbols of the artificial. It may be only that birds are active during the daylight hours and can easily be seen. Perhaps the birds appeal to us mainly because of their beauty of form, color, and sound. Some of us may like them because they are beneficial-they eat insects and weed seeds.

Exactly what the birds mean to you depends more on you than on them. If they mean anything at all to you, and you decide to do something about your interest in them, you may find yourself keeping bird lists, carrying a book in your car and recording birds. you see on trips, competing with friends for the longest list of birds seen in one day, around one lake, during one season, or in one county. You may start a life list, and some day you may find yourself starting a trip to California, Maine, or Mexico, just to see what new birds you can add to your life list. This will keep you going for a long time. The complete list of birds of North America north of Mexico includes more than 800 species. There are 1000 species in Mexico, in case you run out of species at home. Even the 400 Kansas species will do for quite a while. (Included in Check-list of the Birds of Kansas, by Dr. Harrison B. Tordoff, formerly curator of Birds, University of Kansas Museum of Natural History, is a total of 37.5 species, or 459 species and subspecies.) The number of species known to breed within Kansas is 173.

Bird watching may be thought of as a hobby, sport, or just outdoor recreation. Every serious bird watcher has some favorite activities, some individual and some in groups. A few of these are listed and briefly described below; you may want to take part in some of them.

DAILY CHECKLIST
Check off each day the species you see-at home, at school, on your way to work or school. It will be fun to compare the average number checked off per day during the different seasons of the year.

ANNUAL LIST
This is a list of all the species seen in a whole year. After a while it may be interesting to compare one year's list with another.

TRIP LIST
Keep records of birds you see on a business or vacation trip. If the trip lasts several days, keep a separate list each day. You will be interested in seeing how the list changes as you travel through different kinds of country.

SCHOOLYARD LIST
You may keep a list of all birds seen in or about the schoolyard, either by seasons or throughout the school year. If these lists are kept from year to year, some interesting and instructive differences will probably appear.

HOME YARD LIST
This may be kept by days, months, seasons, years, or any other periods you may select. Setting up a bird bath and various types of feeders will increase the numbers of birds to be seen and will also bring them in to where they may be seen more easily.

THE BIG DAY
This is a general roundup, to see how many different kinds of birds a class, club, or other group can see in one whole day. Some bird watchers think this is the big event of their sport. The group usually selects a day in the midst of the spring migration season and tries to cover as many different kinds of habitats as possible - woods, fields, pastures, parks, streams, lakes, ponds, marshes, and whatever else is available.

LIFE LIST
This is a list of all the species you see in your whole life. The first time you see each species record the place, date, and any interesting circumstances. This can become highly interesting, and you may find yourself taking a trip to some new area just to add some "lifers" to your list.

CHRISTMAS CENSUS
This is an all-day count, not only listing the species but also estimating the number of individuals of each species seen. The official National Audubon Society Christmas Census occurs during the week between Christmas and New Year, but you can of course make your own winter census at any time you wish. You may be surprised at the numbers of birds that may be seen in midwinter. Many groups all over the country cooperate in the Audubon Christmas Census, the results of which are published each year by the National Audubon Society . If you are interested in this or other activities of the Society, write National Audubon Society, 1130 Fifth Avenue, New York 28, N. Y.

BREEDING BIRD CENSUS
This is a count of every bird seen in a given area, usually a fairly small area, during the breeding season, with particular note of nesting birds. For many years a robin census was taken on the Emporia State campus. The number of breeding pairs varies from about 20 to about 40.

WATERFOWL CENSUS
If a lake is nearby you may be surprised at the large numbers of ducks and geese to be seen during migration, and even in midwinter. The most favorable locations are the large wildlife refuges, such as Cheyenne Bottoms, but even a farm pond may sometimes yield some striking numbers.

NEST COUNT
The nests which are often so hard to find during the breeding season may stand out boldly after the trees have dropped their leaves. You may then make a fairly accurate count of the nests in a given area.

Even though you don't decide to travel afar yourself, you can feel a kinship with world travelers when you become a friend of migratory birds. When you see a blackpoll warbler in a Kansas tree, you can imagine its trip from Venezuela to Manitoba; on your mel1tal magic carpet you can accompany the golden plover from Paraguay to Alaska. In the spring you can welcome the house wren back from Mexico, and in the fall you can be looking for Harris' sparrow as it returns from its summer sojourn in northern Canada.

You may wish to join the Kansas Ornithological Society and be one of a group of business men and women, doctors, lawyers, farmers, teachers, students and others who have little in common except a love of nature, and especially birds. The secretary of the society is Amelia Betts, Baldwin, Kansas. She will be happy to give you information about the organization and its activities. Regular dues are $2.00 per year, student membership, $1.00 per year. As a member of KOS you'll meet once or twice a year with a couple of hundred other birders for a program, field day, picnic lunch, and the good fellowship of interested people who are laying aside everything else for a day that is strictly for the birds.

USE OF THE FINDING CHART

As noted previously, the chart on pages 13 to 15 is to be used as a guide-not as an authority. The three sections are broad general categories of habitats; the differences between them are not sharp 2nd there is much overlapping. There is no sharp line of division, for example, between "woods, thickets, shelterbelts, parks" and "ponds, lakes, marshes, swamps, streams." Most of the latter have at least a few trees and shrubs associated with them. Birds vary a great deal in their habitat preferences. A crow may be seen in almost any habitat in Kans~,s at almost any time of year, and is thus listed in all three sections and in the first column-"throughout the year." The coot (often inappropriately called mud hen or crow duck) on the other hand, is listed only in Section III since it is almost always found near water, and in the second column - "mainly in summer." But you may occasionally see a flock of coots flying across a pasture or feeding in an upland field. The birds listed in the first column may be seen, as the column title indicates, at any time of year. This does not necessarily mean that they are permanent residents. Robins, for example, are found in all 49 of the continental states, as well as in most of Canada and Mexico. In more than half of the states they may be seen throughout the year. Still they migrate over considerable distances. The robins that nest and raise a family in your Kansas back yard this summer will probably go several hundred miles south for the winter, while other robins from the north and northwest will make use of your winter feeding station. House sparrows (English sparrows), on the other hand, are permanent residents. They live their entire lives within a short distance of the place where they were hatched.

Listing in the first column does not mean that birds found throughout the year are present in equal numbers all year. Mourning doves and red winged blackbirds may be seen during the whole year, but both are far more common during the summer and early fall.

A few birds are listed in more than one column. For example, the redstart is seen throughout the summeL in eastern Kansas, while it appears in western Kansas only during migration. It is thus listed in both column 2 and column 4.

The letters E, C, and W stand for the eastern, central, and western thirds of the state; Nand S designate the northern and southern halves of the state.

The names used are those officially designated by the Checklist Committee of the American Ornithological Union. To prevent confusion, when these names differ from those in common use in most of the field guides listed among the references on page 12, the previous official names, in parenthesis, follow the present name. The species are arranged in phylogenetic order, that is, in presumed order of evolutionary development from more primitive to more advanced. This is the order in which birds are listed in most field manuals and other bird books.

The chart is based on our best estimate of "average" or "usual" conditions, and does not cover the unusual variations. It shows that Townsend's solitaire is a bird of western Kansas, but during a recent winter this species was frequently seen in many places in eastern Kansas. There was a similar "invasion" of crossbills in eastern Kansas a few years earlier.

You may be interested in building a finding chart for your own locality. If so, you will probably select more definite areas for your sectional categories, such as woods, a marshy lake, a city park, your home or school yard, or other types of habitats that may be convenient. II you commute to and from school you may pass by several different types of habitat each school day. You can keep a daily checklist of birds seen in each habitat. Your records will show which birds are most commonly seen in each habitat and will also reveal seasonal changes. Such a roadside list will of course be incomplete, but you may be surprised at the number of birds that can be seen along the roadside, and you will certainly note habitat and seasonal differences if you keep a daily or weekly checklist through a school year.

FINDING CHART FOR KANSAS BIRDS

SECTION 1. PRAIRIE, FIELDS, UPLAND

Size of crow or larger   
1. THROUGHOUT THE YEAR
Red-tailed hawk,
Ferruginous hawk, CW
Marsh hawk
Prairie chicken, EC
Ring-necked pheasant, CW
Barn owl
Great Horned owl
White-necked raven, W
Common crow
2. MAINLY IN SUMMER
Turkey vulture
Red-shouldered hawk, E
Broad-winged hawk, E
Swainson's hawk, CW (Col. 4)
Long-billed curlew, W 
3. MAINLY IN WINTER
Rough-legged hawk
Golden eagle, W
Bald eagle
Short-eared owl
4. MAINLY DURING MIGRATION
Sandhill crane, CW
Canada goose
Swainson's hawk, E (Col. 2)
About the size of a pigeon
Cooper's hawk
Prairie Falcon, CW
Road runner, SW
Rock dove (pigeon)
Blackbilled magpie, W
Mississippi kite, C, especially SC
Mourning dove
  Franklin's gull
About the size of a robin
Sparrow hawk
Bobwhite
Scaled quail, SW
Blue jay
Robin
Loggerhead shrike
Starling
Meadowlark
Brewer's Blackbird, CW (Col. 4)
Common grackle (bronzed grackle)
Killdeer
Upland plover
Burrowing owl
Whip-poor-will, E
Poor-will, CW
Common nighthawk
Red-headed woodpecker
Eastern kingbird
Western kingbird
Purple martin, EC
Mockingbird
Yellow-headed blackbird, W
Brown-headed cowbird
Northern shrike American golden plover
Common snipe (Wilson's snipe)
Buff-breasted sandpiper, E
Cedar waxwing
Yellow-headed blackbird, EC
Rusty blackbird
Brewer's blackbird (Col. 1)
Size of house sparrow or smaller
Horned lark Chimney swift
Barn swallow
Rock wren, W
Lark bunting, W
Grasshopper sparrow
Lark sparrow
Cassin's sparrow, SW
Field sparrow
Slate-colored junco
McCown's longspur, W
Lapland longspur
Smith's longspur,
CW
Chestnut-collared longspur, W
Water pipit
Sprague's pipit, CW
Bobolink, E
Savannah sparrow
Baird's sparrow, W
LeConte's sparrow, EC
Henslow's sparrow, E
Vesper sparrow
Clay-colored sparrow
Brewer's sparrow, W
Song sparrow (often seen in winter)

SECTION II. WOODS, THICKETS, SHELTERBELTS, PARKS, WOODLOTS, HEDGEROWS

Size of crow or larger
1. THROUGHOUT THE YEAR
Red-tailed hawk
Ring-necked pheasant, CW
Great horned owl
Barred owl, EC
Barn owl
Common crow
2. MAINLY IN SUMMER
Great blue heron
Turkey vulture
Swainson's hawk, CW (Col. 4)
3. MAINLY IN WINTER
Rough-legged hawk
4. MAINLY DURING MIGRATION
Swainson's hawk, E (Col. 2)
About the size of a pigeon
Cooper's hawk
Rock dove (pigeon)
Mourning dove
Green heron
Mississippi kite, C especially SC
Sharp-shinned hawk Long-eared-owl
(sometimes resident)
About the size of a robin

Sparrow hawk
Bobwhite
Screech owl
Yellow-shafted flicker
Red-shafted 
flicker, W
Red-bellied woodpecker, EC
Red-headed woodpecker
Hairy woodpecker
Blue jay
Mockingbird
Robin
Eastern bluebird
Loggerhead shrike
Starling
Brown-headed cowbird
Cardinal
Rufous-sided
(Red-eyed) towhee

Yellow-billed cuckoo
Common nighthawk
Chuck-will's-widow, SE
Eastern kingbird
Western kingbird
Scissor-tail flycatcher, CW
Great crested flycatcher, EC
Purple martin, EC
Catbird
Brown thrasher
Woodthrush, EC
Orchard oriole
Baltimore oriole
Bullock's oriole, W
Common grackle (bronzed grackle)
Yellow-bellied
sapsucker
Clark's nutcracker, W
Townsend's solitaire, CW
Arctic towhee, a
subspecies of
rufous-sided towhee (Col. 1),
resident in winter
Hermit thrush
Swainson's (Olive-backed thrush)
Gray-cheeked thrush, EC
Cedar waxwing
Least flycatcher

Size of house sparrow or smaller

Downy woodpecker
Black-capped chickadee
Carolina chickadee, SE
Tufted titmouse, EC
White-breasted nuthatch
Bewick's wren, SE
Carolina wren
House sparrow
American Goldfinch (common goldfinch)

Chimney swift, EC
Ruby-throated hummingbird
Eastern phoebe, EC
Say's phoebe, CW
Eastern wood pewee, E
Tree swallow, NE
Barn swallow
Cliff swallow
House wren
Blue-gray gnatcatcher, EC
Bell's vireo
Red-eyed vireo
Warbling vireo
Prothonotary warbler, EC

Red-breasted nuthatch
Brown creeper
Winter wren
Mountain bluebird, W
Ruby-crowned kinglet
Purple finch, E
Pine siskin
Red crossbill, CW
White-winged junco, W
Slate-colored junco
Oregon junco, CW
Tree sparrow
Harris' sparrow
White-crowned sparrow

Veery, W
Golden-crowned kinglet
Black-and-white warbler
Tennessee warbler, EC
Orange-crowned warbler
Nashville warbler
Myrtle warbler
Black-throated gray warbler, W
Chestnut-sided warbler, E
Bay-breasted warbler
Blackpoll warbler, EC
Ovenbird

 

Louisiana waterthrush
Yellow warbler
Kentucky warbler, E
Yellow-throat, EC (Col. 4)
American redstart, E (Col. 4)
Summer tanager, EC
Rose-breasted grosbeak, E
Black-headed grosbeak, W
Blue grosbeak
Indigo bunting, EC
Lazuli bunting, W
Painted bunting, E
Dickcissel
Lark sparrow
Chipping sparrow, E (Col. 4) Field sparrow

  Northern waterthrush
Yellowthroat, W
(Col. 2)
Yellow-breasted chat
Hooded warbler, E
Wilson's warbler
American redstart, W (Col. 2)
Savannah sparrow
Vesper sparrow
Chipping sparrow (Col. 2)
Clay-colored sparrow
White-crowned sparrow
White-throated sparrow, EC
Fox sparrow, EC
Lincoln's sparrow
Song sparrow
(often seen in winter)

SECTION III. PONDS, LAKES, MARSHES, SWAMPS, STREAMS

Size of crow or larger

1. THROUGHOUT THE YEAR
Canada goose
Mallard
Pintail
Hooded merganser
Marsh hawk
Common crow





2. MAINLY IN SUMMER
Great blue heron
Black-crowned night heron
Yellow-crowned night heron
American bittern
Long-billed curlew, W
American avocet (locally, CW)

In postbreeding summer migration:
Little blue heron
Common egret (American egret)
Snowy egret

3. MAINLY IN WINTER
Common goldeneye
Oldsquaw
Common merganser (American merganser)
(locally)
Bald eagle

4. MAINLY DURING MIGRATION
Common loon
White pelican
Double-crested cormorant
Common egret (Col. 2)
Snowy egret (Col. 2)
Canada goose
Snow goose
Blue goose
Gadwall
American widgeon
Shoveler
Redhead
Ring-necked duck
Canvasback
Lesser scaup
Common merganser (Col. 3)
Sandhill crane
American avocet (Col. 2)
Herring gull, EC, especially NE
Ring-billed gull

       
Rock dove (pigeon)
Mourning dove
Barn owl
Pied-billed grebe
Green heron
Blue-winged teal (also common migrant)
Least bittern
King rail, EC
American coot

 

Eared grebe
Green-winged teal
Cinnamon teal, CW
Wood duck, EC
Bufflehead
Ruddy duck Greater yellowlegs
Long-billed dowitcher
Franklin's gull

About the size of a robin  
Bobwhite
Belted kingfisher
Blue jay
Virginia rail, CW
Sora (locally) , W
Snowy plover (Salt plains)
Killdeer
Spotted sandpiper
Redwinged blackbird
Common grackle
Brewer's blackbird Sora (Col. 2)
Semipalmated plover
American golden plover, EC
Black-bellied plover
Common snipe
Solitary sandpiper
Lesser yellow-legs
Pectoral sandpiper
White-rumped sandpiper
Baird's sandpiper
Stilt sandpiper
Semipalmated sandpiper
Western sandpiper, CW
Buff-breasted sandpiper, E
Wilson's phalaropt
Forster's tern
Black tern
Size of house sparrow or smaller
  Eastern phoebe, EC
Say's phoebe, CW
Bank swallow
Rough-winged swallow
Cliff swallow
Long-billed marsh wren, E
Short-billed marsh wren, E
  Least sandpiper
Long-billed marsh wren
Short-billed marsh wren (marsh wrens sometimes summer residents E, Col. 2)
Water pipit
Sprague's pipit, CW
Savannah sparrow
Lincoln's sparrow
Swamp sparrow, EC

WORKSHOP IN CONSERVATION

The 1961 Workshop in Conservation will again be conducted in two sections, from June 5 to June 23, and from June 26 to July 14, inclusive. As in the past several years, the Workshop will cover water, soil, grassland, wildlife conservation, and conservation teaching.

There will be lectures, demonstrations, discussion groups, films, slides, field trips, projects, and individual and group reports. You may enroll for undergraduate or graduate credit.

The first section is open to any interested person; there are no prerequisites. Since the second section is devoted almost entirely to the production of teaching aids, enrollment is limited to those who already have an established interest in conservation education and who have some teaching experience.

Fee for first section (3 hours credit): Residents of Kansas, $22.95; non-resident, $42.45; second section (1, 2, or 3 hours credit): Residents of Kansas, $7.65 per hour; non-resident, $14.15 per hour.

For other information write the director, Thomas A. Eddy, Department of Biology, KSTC, Emporia, Kansas.


PREVIOUS ISSUES

Oct. 1954, Window Nature Study;
Dec. 1954, Wildlife in Winter;
Feb. 1955, Childrens' Books for Nature Study (First in a series);
April 1955, Let's Go Outdoors;
Oct. 1955, Fall Wildflowers;
Dec. 1955, Snow;
Feb. 1956, Spring Wildflowers;
April 1956, Turtles in Kansas;
Oct. 1956, Hawks in Kansas;
Dec. 1956, Childrens' Books for Nature Study (Second in the series);
Feb. 1957, Life in a Pond;
April 1957, Spiders;
Oct. 1957, Along the Roadside;
Dec. 1957, An Outline for Conservation Teaching in Kansas;
Feb. 1958, Trees;
April 1958, Sum­mer Wildflowers;
Oct. 1958, Watersheds in Kansas;
Dec. 1958, Let's Build Equipment;
Feb. 1959, Poisonous Snakes of Kansas;
April 1959, Life in a Stream;
Oct. 1959, Field Trips;
Dec. 1959, Conservation Arith­metic;
Feb. 1960, The Sparrow Family;
April 1960, Measures and Weights;
Nov. 1960, Let's Experiment;
Jan. 1961, Recent Science Books for Children.

Those printed in boldface type are still available, free of charge except Poisonous Snakes of Kansas, which is sold for 25¢ per copy postpaid, to pay for the increased printing costs due to the color plates.

The out-of-print issues may be found in many school and public libraries in Kan­sas.

THE FINAL ISSUE of Volume 7 of The Kansas School Naturalist will describe the F. B. and Rena C. Ross Natural History Reservation, recently made available by Mr. and Mrs. Ross to the Department of Biology, for education and research. The Ross Reservation was described briefly in the November, 1960, issue of The Kansas Teacher under the title 1040-ACRE CLASSROOM. Mr. Ross, a prominent Emporia business man, was formerly a member of the faculty of the Kansas State Teachers College.

Plans for the 1961-62 numbers of The Kansas School Naturalist are now in the making, although no actual scheduling has been done. It is quite likely that a second number on building equipment for elementary science or the second one on measuring, or both, will be ready. Numbers on microclimates or microenvironments and on lizards are also far enough along so that they may appear next year. Suggestions from readers are always welcomed.

SOME HELPFUL BIRD BOOKS

American Ornithologists' Union, Checklist of North American Birds, 5th ed. 1957. Lord Baltimore Press, Baltimore, Md. $10.00. Common and scientific names and ranges of the 1686 species occurring in North America.

Barton, Roger. 1955. How to Watch Birds, McGraw-Hill, N.Y. $3.00. Nontechnical discussion by the naturalist of the Newark (N.J.) News.

Carson, L. B. Introduction to Our Bird Friends, Vol. I, 1954, 25 cents, Vol. II, 1957, 25 cents. Each contains information about 50 species frequently seen in Kansas; write to Bird Book Department KF, Capper
Publications, 8th and Jackson, Topeka, Kansas.

Collins, Henry Hill, Jr. 1959. Field Guide to American Wildlife, Harper & Brothers, New York. $6.95. Deals with wildlife in general, but 252 pages are devoted to birds.

Cruickshank, Allan D. 1953. The Pocket Guide to Birds (Paperback; Pocket Books GC 18) , 50 cents.

Goodrich, Arthur L. 1945. Birds in Kansas, Kansas State Board of Agriculture, Topeka, Kansas. Out of print, but may be found in many school and public libraries.

Peterson, Roger Tory. 1947. A Field Guide to the Birds, Second Edition, Houghton-Mifflin, Boston. $3.95. Includes birds found in eastern United States and Canada, westward to the 100th meridian.

Peterson, Roger Tory. 1960. A Field Guide to the Birds of Texas, Houghton-Mifflin, Boston, or Texas Game and Fish Commission, Austin. $3.00. Nearly all of the regularly occurring Kansas birds are included among the more than 500 species covered in this book.

Peterson, Roger Tory. 1941. A Field Guide to Western Birds, Houghton-Mifflin, Boston. $3.95, Includes birds found in western United States, eastward to the 100th meridian.

Peterson, Roger Tory. 1949. How to Know the Birds (Paperback; Signet KD 347), 50 cents

Pough, Richard H. 1949. Audubon Land Bird Guide, Revised Edition, Doubleday, Garden City, N, Y. $3.95. Includes the smaller land birds.

Pough, Richard H. 1959. Audubon Water Bird Guide, Doubleday, Garden City, N. Y. $3.95. Includes water, game, and large land birds.

Saunders, Aretas A. 1951. A Guide to Bird Songs, Doubleday, Garden City, N. Y. $3.00.

Tordoff, Harrison B. 1956. Check-list of the Birds of Kansas, 25 cents. Write Museum of Natural History, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas.

Zim, Herbert S. and Ira Gabrielson. 1949. Birds (A Golden Nature Guide), paper, $1.00, Cloth, $1.50.


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Kansas School Naturalist.
 Emporia State University