Year Day Event
2018 01 Went for a New Year's walk through the park and to West's Pond. Last night low was 15° and wind chill that I saw of 7° that is about as cold as I can remember it being. Must be close to a record. Birds were not active, but then, the park is often almost ‘dead.’ Flock of cedar waxwings, small flock of yellow-rumped warblers, a few jays, a few red-bellied woodpeckers, a crow, that was about it over several hours. A squirrel at home, which I fed unsalted nuts, feeling sorry for it. Yesterday, in the parking lot of White Rock Fellowship at 9am I photographed a very sad looking coyote. He was limping with one leg tucked up, and looked very mangy and scared. He hobbled off down the street in front of the church when he saw me. The weather has been particularly cold over this period. 31 Dec – at just after midnight it dropped into the 32°F range, dropped below 32°F by 5:12 am and then stayed below 32°F until 3 Jan at 10:24 am. The 3rd it rose to 48.6°F at 4 pm, then back below 32°F by 10:48 pm until the next morning, the 4th, at 9:12 am. On 1 Jan the wind chill was moving from 8°F at 2:12 am to 6°F several times up until 7:48 am on the 1st. 14.5°F seems to have been the lowest temperature between 7:48 am and 8:00 am on the 1st. Not quite as cold at the 11°F on 7 Jan 2017. But about 77 hours and 12 minutes below 32°F over the 31st Dec to the 3rd of Jan. Quite a spell for here in Dallas!
2009 01 With the temperature at 43°F but little wind, it was a wonderful day to see how the forest and park are beginning the new year. Very quietly, it turns out. The list below shows the eight species I saw in about an hour, but there were only perhaps twenty-five individuals. It was a quiet morning at Lochwood Park. The downy woodpecker was persistently chasing the red-bellied woodpecker, making one think it was defending territory, though this seems a little early in the year for that. For a
2005 01 Overcast, and quite warm, at 64°F, the new year begins with not that many birds in the park, but one new bird, a Cooper's hawk, which flies directly overhead, along the very east edge of the park. My intention is to start a park list this year.
2003 01 Cool and clear this afternoon, with temperatures in the 50s. The unusual birds for the day were a blue-headed vireo and two golden-crowned kinglets, both birds that are not rare, but ones I seldom see, and birds with beautiful plumages. While I saw no robins this year, I see I did have blue-headed vireo last year on this date. And the Nandina are again in fine red trim. For a
2002 01 Went for a walk on both sides of Lochwood Park this fine New Years morning. Temperature was 39oF at 9:40 am when I started. Found at least 11 robins drinking from the stream below the picnic benches. The Nandina berries are now in full color, creating red accents throughout the forest. For a full list of the 20 species seen, click
1996 01 For perhaps an hour this evening ~9-10 PM – it snowed! Wonderful, big, swirling, drifting clouds of snow. I was out driving in it, and under every streetlight a cloud of flakes danced, and well-lite intersections were like theaters in which snow drifted across, in huge, but orderly choruses. A cold day generally, gray all day, with sleet proceeding the snow.
1987 01 Snow! Only lasted for one day: most fell during the night.
2002 05 While this has nothing to do with Lochwood Park, it does have to do with a bird I have dreamed of seeing most of my life. Snowy owls figure in the legends of most northern people. The heaviest, and nearly the largest, owl in North America, it is also a bird of the Arctic, and seldom seen in the lower 48 states. For the last month or so, one has been seen regularly in the middle of Oklahoma. I drove up today, just to see this great and delightful bird. This small picture hardly does it justice, but I am glad after more than 35 years to have seen one, even if it was not in Texas.
2002 24 I don't want to make this a regular feature, but another bird of the far north has been seen far to the south. The first Texas record for a gyrfalcon was seen in Lubbock, Texas this week. Another fellow and I drove out to see it, arriving at 2 AM in Lubbock. It was dimly visible on the water tower where it has been roosting every night. While the photo at the left is a poor one, taken through my telescope, it does show a little of the regal look of this bird, most likely an immature female. For some better pictures, you can go here to Martin Reid's page. This is a bird that seldom is seen outside of Canada and rarely in the northern United States."
1999 31 First northern cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis) heard singing, rather than just calling.

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