Yesterday I observed the Clark's Nutcracker in both yards: 24092 and 24185
County Road 9. I couldn't find anything on Google Maps that referred to
this road as Cedar Valley Road, so if you're trying to figure out
directions, just use County Road 9. Curt Rawn's instructions were
excellent: "24092 [Bruce Little's house, which is now closed to the public]
is on the south side of County Road 9, 1.5 miles from Highway 61."
I waited in Bruce's yard starting shortly after 12:30pm. I didn't see it,
although Bruce came out later and told me that he saw the bird in his yard
that morning and that many other birders saw it on the powerline by 24185,
which is about 1/8 mile further down (southwest) and on the other side of
the road (the north side), as previously mentioned by Dedrick Benz. After
Bruce directed me to the other house around 1:45pm, I immediately saw the
nutcracker on a bird house. A woman came out of the house and told me that
they had been seeing this bird for about three weeks as well, but didn't
know what it was. She was pretty excited to learn what it was and how rare
it was. Like Bruce, she was very kind and let me walk around her yard to
get better views. The bird was very calm and was either perching or
foraging. Larry Sirvio and Kevin Smith pulled up in the driveway around
2:00pm, at which point the bird flew to Bruce's yard. The woman let the
birders park in her driveway, but we eventually headed back to Bruce's
where we got more lovely looks. I left at 2:15pm and the nutracker was
I never got the woman's name, but she was kind and may let you park or walk
around if you ask her, like she did for us. But be sure that you ask first.
:) She doesn't have as much parking space as Bruce does, so that could
become problematic, and as Dedrick said, there is no shoulder to pull off
on the road. So long story short, if you're chasing the Clark's Nutracker,
please be respectful of both properties. And please be safe on the road--it
was fairly quiet in the middle of the day, but there were about 1-2 cars
every five minutes, so it still gets used regularly.
I want to thank the homeowners for their hospitality, Dedrick for sharing
about the bird, and to Curt Rawn and Alan Stankevitz for giving good
directions and keeping us updated on the bird.
Thanks, and good birding!
Join or Leave mou-net: http://lists.umn.edu/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=mou-net