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Caney River Bottoms, Collinsville
Tulsa County

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From the 1986 edition of A Guide to Birding in Oklahoma published by the Tulsa Audubon Society. This account has not been reviewed or updated to ensure accuracy.

From Tulsa go east on I 244E to exit north on US 169 (0.0). Continue north through Owasso to Collinsville. At the stop sign, 129 E. Ave. goes straight ahead and US 169 turns right. Follow 129 E. Ave. (5th St.) north to the Collinsville Sewage Ponds west of the road (15.5). Greater and Lesser Scaups, Ring-necked Ducks, Wood Ducks, Hooded Mergansers, and most of the puddle ducks stop here in small numbers. Least, Forster's, and Black terns come through in migration. Migrating swallows fly over the ponds and Tree Swallows have wintered. Continue north on 129 St. E to the dead end (17.0) at 176 St. N; drive past small homes to a creek bottom and park beyond the bridge. This is one of many small tributaries subject to periodic flooding of the Caney River. Philadelphia Vireos are here in spring migration as are Willow, Alder, and Least flycatchers. A Lazuli Bunting appeared on a recent May count. Prothonotary Warblers sing from the swampy woods around the creek.

Return to 176 St. and go east down into the valley. Pecan groves are on either side and the valley is regularly patrolled. Drive slowly, listening for Kentucky Warblers (spring) in the thick underbrush and trees. The groves attract 6 woodpecker species, White-breasted Nuthatch, Carolina Chickadee, and Tufted Titmouse; Brown Creeper, Winter Wren, and Golden-crowned Kinglet; White-crowned, White-throated, and Harris's sparrows in winter. After the road turns north many warbler species may be found--Nashville, Tennessee, Yellow, Wilson's, Yellow-rumped, and perhaps Yellow-throated--if one walks along the tree-lined road in spring. Red-eyed and Warbling vireos are common in summer. Red-shouldered Hawks are permanent residents.

Retrace the route to go west on 176 St. N, turning right on 97 E. Ave., then north to 186 St. Follow 186 St. west to Memorial, continuing west to check for Vesper and Tree sparrows near the water tower where they often make their first fall and winter appearances. Both Western and Eastern meadowlarks sing along the route in spring and fall. After passing the water tank, scan the hillsides and check herds of cattle near US 75, one of the best locations to find Brewer's Blackbirds close enough for careful identification. Also here in migrations are Yellow-headed Blackbirds.




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