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July 1, 2006

Cat Bullet

Arsenal Tour with Refuge Manager

Filed under: Rocky Mountain Arsenal — Cat @ 10:06 pm

On Saturday June 24th, the Rocky Mountain Arsenal had its annual “Volunteer Appreciation Event.” There was a barbeque and a few awards were given out. The highlight for me, though, was a tour given for us by the Refuge Manager.

As a side note for those of you who don’t know, my volunteer job consists of leading various tours of the Arsenal. It was nice, for a change, to be able to sit in the back of the bus and be able to take pictures without feeling that I’m ignoring my tour group.

Did I mention pictures?

You can see his lunch in his talons!

This is a Swainson’s hawk, taking off from a prairie dog colony. In the full size picture, you can acutally see that he has a mouse or kangaroo rat in his talons.

We saw two groups of white pelicans flying around.

Coming in for a landing

We’ve had several American Avocets hanging around on Lower Derby. I finally got a somewhat decent shot.

American Avocet on Lower Derby

We saw a Bullock’s Oriole (formerly a Northern Oriole) feasting on a thistle seed head.

Yum... Thistle.

We saw one little burrowing owl. But he was shy.

Peekaboo!

If you look closely in the center of the picture, you can just make out the rounded top of his head and the shape of his eyes. I’ve got to get a better picture of these guys, they are just too fun for words. One of these weekends, I’m actually going to get out of bed early and go to the Arsenal and take early morning pictures.

Stop laughing. I actually can get out of bed early on a weekend. I just generally choose not to.

We saw a few mule deer fawns up and running around, but they were too far away to get a good photo. It was an entertaining afternoon, even if we had to cut the tour short becasue of a lightning storm.

And, for those of you who are keeping track, I received my 300 hour service award. That is a lot of time spent in front of a bus pointing out wildlife.

pitter patterpitter patterpitter patterpitter patterpitter patterpitter patterpitter patterpitter patterpitter patter

5 Comments »

  1. Great images Cat!

    Comment by Mom — July 2, 2006 @ 7:31 am
  2. 300 hours. :shock: How long is a tour? When did you actually start out there?

    Comment by Dave — July 5, 2006 @ 8:53 am
  3. Each tour is just about 2 hours. I’m generally there about 3 or 4 hours, depending on what is going on and if they need help doing anything else (bookstore, labeling newsletters, etc).

    Sometimes they have all day events (Refuge Day) and I’m out there longer.

    I think I started in November 2002. Maybe it was 2003. I’m not actually sure.

    Comment by Cat — July 5, 2006 @ 9:00 am
  4. Did you get a 300 hour pin?

    Comment by Dave — July 5, 2006 @ 2:37 pm
  5. I got a water bottle. Again. I wonder if they are trying to tell me something.

    I don’t think you get a pin until 500 hours.

    Comment by Cat — July 6, 2006 @ 9:05 am

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