Our first stop will be the large shopping center at Concord Mills. Surprisingly, this can be an excellent spot for wintering waterfowl and once we have met, we will drive behind the mall to the wetland. In the past we have seen Northern Pintail, Northern Shoveler, Gadwall and Green-winged Teal. We have even seen Loggerhead Shrike there, although that was a rare occurrence. Both the wetland and the nearby Mall Pond can hold Ring-billed Gulls, Double-crested Cormorants and Great Blue Heron, but anything is possible.
We will then to Reedy Creek Park and Nature preserve. Over 1000 acres of land are preserved in this preserve and we will explore some of the many habitats hopefully seeing a good selection of Piedmont wintering species. As of now (January 8) there is currently a Rufous Hummingbird visiting the feeders behind the Nature Center.
We will end the day at McAlpine Creek Park, another one of Mecklenburg County’s fine series of parks and greenways. A Reddish Egret spent a few days here last June, so anything can appear. However, we are more likely to see Great Blue Heron, Red-shouldered Hawk, Swamp and Song Sparrows, Purple Finch and several woodpeckers.
You can combine this trip with our first Charlotte area trip on February 8 and even our Lincoln County trip on February 10.