Minnesota River Valley MBWeekend

September 20 - 21 - 22, 2019

(Summary by Craig Mandel – plus minor edits by KRE)

Overall, the weather was very good with storms mostly at night that brought in lots of migrants. The first two days did have high temperatures reaching the mid-80s – but at least the leader enjoyed those two warm days! The birding highlight had to be the Common Gallinule at the Nicollet Conservation Club, but the 16 warbler species and all 5 species of vireos also made for some key moments as we encountered nice waves of these and other songbirds on all three days. In all, we were able to find a total of 112 species during this MBW. 

In Le Sueur County on Friday’s pre-MBW, we observed most of our shorebirds, with both Black-bellied and American Golden-Plovers at the Cleveland sewage ponds, and the distant Red-necked Phalaropes observed on Lake Henry were new for a number of the participants. Other highlights from this county were the Merlin and Eastern Towhee at the Kasota Prairie. On Saturday, we started the day with a great wave of warblers at Seven Mile Creek County Park along with a Wood Thrush, and some also heard a Black-billed Cuckoo there. On Sunday (after finally finding a birding location that was open!), we added to our weekend list with a late Veery and a Pine Siskin, along with lots of warblers at the Minneopa Cemetery. We ended the MBW near Good Thunder with stops at their sewage ponds and a couple of parks. Again, these parks had some nice waves of warblers and vireos which we watched until the mid-afternoon rain finally sent us back to Mankato.


Bird List

LeS = seen Sept 20 in Le Sueur County

• Nic = seen Sept 21 in Nicollet County

• BlueE = seen Sept 22 in Blue Earth County

Canada Goose        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Trumpeter Swan        Nic-BlueE 

Wood Duck        LeS-Nic-BlueE                                                                          

Blue-winged Teal        Nic-BlueE 

Northern Shoveler        LeS-Nic

Mallard        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Hooded Merganser        LeS 

Ruddy Duck        LeS-BlueE 

Ring-necked Pheasant        Nic-BlueE

Wild Turkey        LeS-BlueE 

Pied-billed Grebe        LeS-Nic-BlueE 

Red-necked Grebe        BlueE 

Rock Pigeon        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Eurasian Collared-Dove        Nic-BlueE 

Mourning Dove        LeS-Nic-BlueE 

Black-billed Cuckoo    Nic 

Common Nighthawk     LeS-Nic-BlueE

Ruby-throated Hummingbird        LeS-Nic

Virginia Rail        Nic

Sora        Nic

Common Gallinule     Nic  

American Coot        Nic 

Sandhill Crane     LeS 

Black-bellied Plover      LeS 

American Golden Plover     LeS

Killdeer        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Spotted Sandpiper        BlueE

Lesser Yellowlegs        LeS

Red-necked Phalarope        LeS

Franklin's Gull        LeS-BlueE

Ring-billed Gull        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Double-crested Cormorant        LeS-BlueE

American White Pelican        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Great Blue Heron        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Great Egret     LeS-Nic

Turkey Vulture        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Osprey      LeS-BlueE

Northern Harrier        LeS-BlueE

Sharp-shinned Hawk      LeS-Nic-BlueE

Cooper’s Hawk        BlueE

Bald Eagle        LeS-BlueE

Broad-winged Hawk        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Red-tailed Hawk        LeS-BlueE

Barred Owl        BlueE

Belted Kingfisher        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Red-bellied Woodpecker        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker        LeS-BlueE

Downy Woodpecker        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Hairy Woodpecker        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Northern Flicker      LeS-Nic-BlueE

Pileated Woodpecker        Nic-BlueE

American Kestrel        Nic-BlueE

Merlin     LeS

Great-crested Flycatcher     LeS

Eastern Wood-Pewee     LeS-Nic

Eastern Phoebe        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Yellow-throated Vireo      LeS-Nic-BlueE

Blue-headed Vireo     LeS-Nic-BlueE

Philadelphia Vireo     Nic-BlueE

Warbling Vireo     LeS-Nic-BlueE

Red-eyed Vireo     LeS-Nic-BlueE      

Blue Jay        LeS-Nic-BlueE

American Crow        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Horned Lark     LeS

Tree Swallow        LeS

Barn Swallow        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Black-capped Chickadee        LeS-Nic-BlueE

White-breasted Nuthatch        LeS-Nic-BlueE

House Wren        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher        LeS

Ruby-crowned Kinglet        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Eastern Bluebird        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Veery        BlueE

Wood Thrush        Nic

American Robin        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Gray Catbird        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Brown Thrasher        BlueE

European Starling        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Cedar Waxwing        LeS-Nic-BlueE

House Sparrow        Nic

House Finch        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Pine Siskin        BlueE

American Goldfinch        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Lark Sparrow        Nic

Chipping Sparrow        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Field Sparrow        LeS

Savannah Sparrow        Nic

Song Sparrow        LeS-Nic

Swamp Sparrow        Nic

Eastern Towhee        LeS-BlueE

Yellow-headed Blackbird        Nic

Western Meadowlark        LeS

Red-winged Blackbird        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Common Grackle        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Golden-winged Warbler        Nic

Black-and-white Warbler        Nic-BlueE

Tennessee Warbler        Nic-BlueE

Orange-crowned Warbler        LeS-BlueE

Nashville Warbler        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Common Yellowthroat        LeS-Nic-BlueE

American Redstart        Nic

Cape May Warbler        BlueE

Northern Parula        Nic-BlueE

Magnolia Warbler        Nic-BlueE

Bay-breasted Warbler        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Blackburnian Warbler        Nic-BlueE

Chestnut-sided Warbler        BlueE

Yellow-rumped Warbler        LeS-BlueE

Black-throated Green Warbler        BlueE

Wilson's Warbler        Nic

Scarlet Tanager        LeS-Nic

Northern Cardinal        LeS-Nic-BlueE

Rose-breasted Grosbeak        LeS-Nic-BlueE