Birding at Antelope Island
One of our favorite places to go birding in Utah is Antelope Island, which is smack dab in the middle of the Great Salt Lake. I had lived here 12 years and it wasn’t until I had met Steve that I finally ventured across the causeway to see Antelope Island and all that it has to offer, which is ironic, because Steve is from Canada and he knew a lot more about Antelope Island than I did and I was from Utah. Here’s a journal entry from September 20, 2008 that I recently stumbled upon:
On this day we saw over 10,000 Avocets (shore birds) that were staging, which Steve tells me is stopping for about three weeks to feed and double their body weights before they continued on flying south. We stopped to feed and double our own body weights by having lunch atop Buffalo Point where we picnicked in the car, eating our sandwiches, because it was so windy outside. But an advantage of sitting in the car was that we got to listen to my favorite NPR radio show. “Wait! Wait! Don’t Tell Me!”
We saw two Great-Horned Owls snoozing, and I spotted a female American Redstart, which is unusual for Utah. She must have taken a wrong turn somewhere. Otherwise, it was a quiet day. We did startle a doe mule deer and her two fawns as we were lurking around the Garr Ranch. They took off running and then kept their eyes on us at a distance. We made a friend on our trip–Bill Fenimore, who is not only a bird expert, but has his own Wild Bird store in nearby Layton, where we dropped by after our trip. Now, I’m excited to see all the new birds that will be visiting our feeders in our backyard. It’s just a matter of time now!
My husband and I both love Antelope Island. It’s truly peaceful and without having to venture very far from the urban sprawl in the Salt Lake Valley, you’re taken away to what feels like a very remote area. One day I asked Steve where he would like his ashes spread (we both decided we want to be cremated when we die) and without hesitation, he said, “Antelope Island.” Let’s just hope I don’t have make that kind of trip to Antelope Island anytime soon.