I observed a juvenile Sabine's Gull out on the Purgatory Wetland Mudflats in Eden Prairie, Hennepin County this afternoon. I was searching through a handful of Ring-billed Gulls and 21 Caspian Terns when a Peregrine Falcon came in and buzzed the mudflats. This got all the birds up and that enabled me to enjoy the distinctive and diagnostic wing pattern that divides the upperparts into triangles of black, white and grey appearing a a bold "M" in flight. I was ecstatatic to be able to enjoy this Gull take short flights and come back to rest in the water next to the mudflats for 45 minutes and it was still there when I left.
Purgatory Wetlands is in Eden Prairie, Hennepin County. It is south from State Hwy 5 on Prairie Center Drive about 1/4 mile on the southside of Prairie Center Drive. You will see Purgatory Recreation Area and the Flagship Corporate Center and can park in either lot to walk the paved trail around the wetlands. A good viewing area and where I observed the birds this afternoon is behind the office building on the bridge that overlooks the wetland area and mudflats.
Richfield, Hennepin Co.
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