*May 27, 2010
Hotline: Minnesota, Detroit Lakes
Date: May 27, 2010
Sponsor: Lakes Area Birding Club, Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce
Reports: 1-800-542-3992 (weekdays during business hours)
Compiler: Jeanie Joppru ([log in to unmask])
This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 27,
2010 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You
may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.
Summer has surely arrived, and migration appears to essentially over.
Most species seen last weekend are locally nesting species, not long
distance migrants moving through. It appears that the birds must have
overflown us in last week's very nice weather. All that changed on
Monday when a powerful storm system ripped through the area, dumping
large amounts of rain on the northwest, and eliminating much of the
shorebird habitat with it. Be careful on small minimum maintenance roads
this week, as some have mud and/or washouts.
The big news this week is that a WHOOPING CRANE was spotted at Agassiz
NWR during a low level aerial survey of broods on Friday, May 21. The
bird was on the ground at the back of a huge mudflat on drawn down
Agassiz Pool half to three quarters of a mile from the nearest road when
first spotted. Staff were able to get close enough to see that the bird
bore no bands, making it potentially countable. After a considerable
search, the bird was relocated on Sunday, May 23 near the same location
at least a half mile from Westgate Road. It has not been seen since.
Note that this location is in a gated portion of the refuge, at the far
reach of most telescopes. Also note that the recent rains have pretty
much eliminated the mudflat so it is unlikely that the bird is still
In the course of the search for the above bird, a BLACK-NECKED STILT was
found at Dahl Pool. This is a very small area, and the bird could not be
relocated on Monday, May 24, so must have moved on.
In Kittson County over the weekend, Larry Wilebski reported
SEMI-PALMATED PLOVER, SANDERLING, RUDDY TURNSTONE, DUNLIN, COMMON TERN,
SHORT-EARED OWL, WESTERN KINGBIRD, YELLOW-THROATED VIREO, and LE
CONTE'SS SPARROW on his property northwest of Lancaster.
Pat DeWenter in Beltrami County on May 24 observed BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE
and a pair of nesting TRUMPETER SWANS. On May 22, she had a GRAY-CHEEKED
THRUSH in the yard. Other species seen in the county this weekend
included RED-EYED VIREO, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, NASHVILLE WARBLER,
CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER,AMERICAN REDSTART, and COMMON YELLOWTHROAT.
Shawn Conrad heard a BARRED OWL at a campground at Itasca SP in
Clearwater County on the weekend. Barb and Dennis Martin found a
BLACK-BACKED WOODPECKER at the park with the Detroit Lake Birding
In addition to the two species noted earlier, 22 species of shorebirds
were seen at Agassiz NWR in Marshall County on the weekend including
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER, AMERICAN GOLDEN PLOVER, SEMIPALMATED PLOVER in
large numbers, an AMERICAN AVOCET, many hundreds of DUNLINS, WILSON'S
PHALAROPES, RED-NECKED PHALAROPES, and many others. It should be noted
that most of these birds had departed by late Sunday, and now the
mudflat is greatly reduced with the recent rain.
Shelley Steva observed a male NORTHERN CARDINAL at her home in Thief
River Falls in Pennington County on May 23, and a KILLDEER with young
was also seen. Pat Murphy reported a BOBOLINK west of Thief River Falls.
In Norman County on May 21, Shelley Steva and I found a COOPER'S HAWK on
the nest in the city park at Ada. In addition, BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE and
COMMON RAVEN were seen in the county. Shawn Conrad observed
GREATER-PRAIRIE CHICKEN and MARBLED GODWIT in Norman County on the
Shawn also went to Clay County on the weekend where he visited Felton
Prairie and saw GREATER PRAIRIE-CHICKEN, UPLAND SANDPIPER, MARBLED
GODWIT, and CHESTNUT-COLLARED LONGSPUR.
Dave and Betty Hochhalter in Detroit Lakes, Clay County, had an ORCHARD
ORIOLE in their yard this week. Barb and Dennis Martin reported that a
RUDDY TURNSTONE spent the weekend along the shoreline of Detroit Lake in
town. Many shorebirds were seen by the festival birders at Bisson Lake
which was in drawdown at Hamden Slough NWR . I have no reports of
whether the habitat is still available there after the storm.
Barb and Dennis also reported that a COMMON RAVEN was seen at
Glendalough SP in Otter Tail County on the weekend.
Thanks to Barb and Dennis Martin, Dave and Betty Hochhalter, Larry
Wilebski, Pam Murphy, Pat DeWenter, Shelley Steva, and Shawn Conrad for
Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than
Thursday each week, at [log in to unmask] OR call the Detroit Lakes
Chamber's toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders
please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took
place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, June 3,
Pennington County, MN