Meet at 7:30 a.m. at the Prothro Junction commuter lot, I-40 East, Exit 157, southeast side of the interstate. We’ll spend the morning exploring the Joe Hogan Fish Hatchery, the minnow ponds along Bob Long Rd. and the open fields east of Bob Long Rd. First stop is the Fish Hatchery, off Hwy. 70 at 23 Joe Hogan Lane in Lonoke. The hatchery is the largest and one of the oldest state-owned warm-water pond hatcheries in the United States. After searching the hatchery, we’ll head south on Hwy. 31 to Pettus and turn east onto Bob Long Road. We’ll check the numerous minnow ponds, which can be a magnet for lingering shorebirds, various duck species, a rare merganser or scoter, and early arriving gulls. The open fields attract flocks of Snow, Greater White-fronted, and Canada Geese, raptors, and first-of-the-season sparrows. The trip combines driving and stopping, with walking at the Fish Hatchery. Wear sturdy shoes as we may be standing in dirt and grass in some spots. Bring scopes, water, and snacks. This is a morning trip.