This afternoon in the Cedar between Parley Lake and the Grimm Rd. picnic area at Carver Park Reserve, I saw a Townsend's Solitaire. Initially I believe I startled him as I walked around a bend in the trail as it climbed the hill from Parley Lake near the picnic area. I saw a large thrush fly from the edge of the trail but did not see any identifying marks. I stopped at the point in the trail where I last saw him and then began searching through the Cedar branches for any signs of a bird. In time I began to notice movement in the trees and was able to determine it was a Townsend's Solitaire. He was not being cooperative though. In time he came relatively close and perched in the open for a good clear view. He then moved back into the Cedar. I saw him moving around a few times from that point but it appeared it was staying in the same difficult to view clump of trees. I had been to this particular spot 3 other days this past week and not seen the Solitaire.
As for other birds, I saw the fewest birds this afternoon of any other day I've gone to Carver Park this month. The only numerous bird was Cedar Waxwing. With the warm weather this month, bird numbers and variety have been very good. After my best October for Pine Siskin and Purple Finch, this has been my best November for Snow Bunting, Common Redpoll, and Purple Finch. I've never had a good November for those species, so the number I have seen is probably not that exceptional. Like most bird species for me this fall, duck numbers have been relatively good. The only species this fall that I think has had terrible numbers is Common Loon. I didn't make regular checks of Lake Waconia like I did for a couple years in the past, but the times I did check there was very little on the lake. Some of my checks produced so little that I didn't report to ebird. There were a few relatively calm days with smooth water conditions that I saw no loons at all this fall.
Other unusual sightings for me this month
1 Snow Goose migrating with a Canada Goose flock on November 20 over Carver Park
1 Osprey (late) on November 6 at Carver Park
1 Broad-winged Hawk (late) migrating on November 20 over Carver Park
17 Sandhill Crane (single flock) migrating on November 20 over Carver Park
1 American Woodcock (late) on November 6 at Carver Park
Eastern Bluebird (not unusual to see but there were a much higher number than usual early in the month and I don't normally see them as often during the month)
Yellow-rumped Warbler(not unusual to see but like the Bluebird there have been a higher number lingering than usual, seen 5 days this month with the last seen on November 22)
1 Rusty Blackbird (late) on November 13 at Carver Park
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