My recent visit to Manhattan Kansas and the Platte River, Nebraska, was the first time I’ve ever set foot into either state, so this is my complete bird list for that region. Life list birds are noted with red font.
Eastern Kansas/Nebraska Bird List
Snow goose, white and blue phases
Blue-winged teal (plentiful)
Redhead (only one pair, but they were very close to the road)
Greater prairie-chicken dancing on several lek sites in Kansas
Wild turkey, many individuals including three males that were actively courting females
Common loon, all in their spectacular breeding plumage
American white pelican
Great blue heron
Turkey vulture, LOTS!
Sandhill crane (greater and lesser)
Franklin’s gull, all in spectacular breeding plumage
Eurasian collared dove
Northern flicker, both the yellow-shafted and red-shafted subspecies, as well as several “orange-shafted” hybrids
Northern rough-winged swallow
American tree sparrow
Dark-eyed junco, “slate-colored” subspecies
86 species total seen in six days, with eight additions to my life list. I was accompanied by Dave Rintoul, Elizabeth Dodd, or Chuck Otte, so thanks to all of them for showing me a great time and for helping me add some birds to my life list, despite my broken arm.
And now, because I was morbidly fascinated by all the carnage along the roadways, I also kept a roadkill list. Unfortunately, some species on the roadkill list were only seen as two-dimensional representations of their three-dimensional selves.
Eastern Kansas/Nebraska Roadkill List
Striped skunk (also seen alive)
White-tailed deer (also seen alive)
Opossum (only seen dead)
Red-tailed hawk (saw at least three dead birds)
Barred owl (saw only one)
Great-horned owl (only saw one dead, none alive)
Yellow-headed blackbird (saw one)
Badger (only seen dead)
Raccoon (saw several dead ones only)
Jack rabbit (saw several dead ones only)
Cottontail rabbit (saw this animal alive, too)