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    Bent's Old Fort

    National Historic Site Colorado

Birds

Nature and Science

Red-tailed Hawk

(Levi Castello)

To date ninety-nine species of birds have been documented at the site. Great horned owls, Wild turkeys, Northern bobwhite, and Red-headed woodpeckers are commonly seen or heard along the river in the cottonwoods. In the winter Northern harrier and Red-tailed hawks stay and prey on the Black-tailed prairie dogs, and small rodents in the scattered trees along the river. Mallards, Snow geese, and Canada geese can be found in the large wetland during the winter. White-faced ibis migrate through the park in the spring. The park has a Bird Check List that includes 137 species of birds and lists 15 species that were identified from period diaries as being here during the 1840's.

- Saturday, August 9th 1845,
Report of Lt. James Abert of his Examination of New Mexico -
"... Scattered around the fort in different cages we saw some of the birds of this region - mocking bird, 'turdus polyglottus,' magpie, 'corvus pica,' and two of the bald-headed eagle, 'falco leucocephalus' ."

Did You Know?

Santa Fe Traveling Trunk

Bent's Fort's Santa Fe Traveling Trunk is a mini-museum of 1840s clothing, games, and trade goods for use in the classroom. Ten lesson plains are based on Colorado State teaching standards. More...