Pelicans are migrating through the Illinois River Valley. I went looking for them on Sunday and found large numbers on the North Lake at Chautauqua Wildlife Refuge. To get a good view I had to walk out on the dike to the other side of the lake. It was a long, hot, sunny walk! But I was rewarded with some nice flyover photographs. I noticed another large group of birds across the lake, but I was too tired to go looking for them then. However, I did go back the next day, this time to the Goofy Ridge (yes that is the name of a town!) access point. Hundreds of pelicans were resting or milling around on a large mudflat with some gulls and shore birds.
A couple of American Avocets were in the mix, but I could not photograph them, not with my 400mm lens. They were too far away. A nice gentleman let me view the birds through his scope, so I was able to add this distinctive shore bird to my Life List!
Oh and chiggers got me on both walks! I didn't expect them up on the dikes. I wasn't walking around in tall grass or anything, but the little buggers found me!