Pope  County pre-MBW & Traverse MBweekend Summary

May 4 - 5 - 6, 2018

On the May 4 Pope Co pre-MBW, we could have almost ended the trip at lunch – after then, the wind came up and the birds seemed to have disappeared. But we did have a great morning of birding by seeing most of the 108 species finally listed for the day. We started the day watching some baby Great Horned Owls near the old Cyrus WTP. This was followed by a great stop at Danielson Slough, where a nice mix of water birds and sparrows was found. We also birded the Walden and Greiner WPAs and at Lake Emily, with each location producing some new species for the list (including Sora, Virginia Rail, and Western Grebe). We also made stops at Glacial Lakes State Park and Barsness Park where we added a few woods birds including Yellow and Orange-crowned warblers, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and a few sparrows. Thanks to Dave Benson for helping me as co-leader, and thanks to the group for putting up with a long, windy afternoon.  – Craig

- - - - - - - -

Although the main Traverse Co MBWeekend on Saturday-Sunday did not have that much of a problem with wind as on the pre-MBW, the weather was generally just too nice, clear, and on the warm side (low 80s on Saturday) to concentrate or ground many migrants. (It was also a bit disappointing not to turn up with any Black-necked Stilts, Cattle or Snowy egrets, or White-faced Ibis, even though there had been a rash of sightings of these rarities in recent days.) Still, we came up with a nice list of 123 species, for a surprising total of 139 in all for the three days.

Our shorebird list was respectable enough on Saturday-Sunday as we found 16 species (or 17 total, including Pope Co's Pectoral on Friday), with the best sites on the Traverse-Big Stone county line on Saturday afternoon and at the North Ottawa impoundment in Grant Co on Sunday morning. There were American Avocets, Dunlins, and Short-billed Dowitchers at both sites, and at least half of the group also saw Upland Sandpiper, Marbled Godwit, Sanderling, Baird's Sandpiper, and Willet at North Ottawa.    

Warblers, on the other hand, were a disappointment. We turned up only 7 species in three days, but a Blackpoll was a nice suprise at White Rock WMA in Traverse Co, and even more unusual was the Pine Warbler at Pine Ridge County Park in Grant Co. Some raptors were also of interest: a Harlan's-type Red-tailed soared over Miller Prairie West, Peregrine Falcons were seen at least four times, and a two-fer Swainson's Hawk crossed the Grant-Traverse county line as half the group headed back to Herman from North Ottawa on Sunday. LeConte's Sparrows were certainly another highlight, with most of us able to see one at Miller Prairie West in Traverse Co, and I think everyone saw at least one LeConte's at North Ottawa.

Bird List

FRI = seen on May 4 pre-MBW (all in Pope Co)

SAT = seen on May 5 (mostly Traverse Co; also Stevens, Grant, Big Stone Co's)

SUN = seen on May 6 (all in Grant Co)

Canada Goose        FRI-SAT-SUN

Tundra Swan        SAT

Wood Duck        FRI-SAT

Blue-winged Teal        FRI-SAT-SUN

Northern Shoveler        FRI-SAT-SUN

Gadwall        FRI-SAT-SUN

American Wigeon        SAT-SUN

Mallard        FRI-SAT-SUN

Northern Pintail        SAT-SUN

Green-winged Teal        SAT-SUN

Canvasback        FRI-SAT-SUN

Redhead        FRI-SAT-SUN

Ring-necked Duck        FRI-SAT-SUN

Greater Scaup        FRI-SAT

Lesser Scaup        FRI-SAT-SUN

Bufflehead        FRI-SAT-SUN

Hooded Merganser        FRI-SAT

Common Merganser        FRI only

Red-breasted Merganser        FRI only

Ruddy Duck        FRI-SAT-SUN

Ring-necked Pheasant        FRI-SAT-SUN

Pied-billed Grebe        FRI-SAT-SUN

Horned Grebe        FRI-SAT-SUN

Red-necked Grebe        FRI-SAT-SUN

Eared Grebe        SUN

Western Grebe        FRI-SAT-SUN

Rock Pigeon        FRI-SAT-SUN

Eurasian Collared-Dove        FRI-SAT-SUN

Mourning Dove        FRI-SAT-SUN

Chimney Swift        SAT-SUN

Virginia Rail        FRI-SAT-SUN

Sora        FRI-SAT-SUN

American Coot        FRI-SAT-SUN

Sandhill Crane        FRI only

American Avocet        SAT-SUN

Killdeer        FRI-SAT-SUN

Upland Sandpiper        FRI-SAT-SUN

Marbled Godwit        SUN

Sanderling        SUN

Dunlin        SAT

Baird’s Sandpiper        SUN

Least Sandpiper        FRI-SAT-SUN

Pectoral Sandpiper        FRI only

Semipalmated Sandpiper        SAT-SUN

Short-billed Dowitcher        SAT-SUN

Wilson’s Snipe        FRI-SAT-SUN

Spotted Sandpiper        FRI-SAT-SUN

Lesser Yellowlegs        FRI-SAT-SUN

Willet        SUN

Greater Yellowlegs        FRI-SAT-SUN

Wilson’s Phalarope        SAT

Bonaparte’s Gull        FRI (by KRE at L Minnewaska)-SAT

Ring-billed Gull        FRI-SAT-SUN

Herring Gull        SAT

Caspian Tern        FRI only

Forster’s Tern        FRI-SAT-SUN

Common Loon        FRI-SAT

Double-crested Cormorant        FRI-SAT-SUN

American White Pelican        FRI-SAT-SUN

American Bittern        FRI-SUN

Great Blue Heron        FRI-SUN

Great Egret        FRI-SAT

Green Heron        SAT

Black-crowned Night-Heron        SUN

Turkey Vulture        FRI-SAT

Bald Eagle        FRI-SAT-SUN

Northern Harrier        FRI-SAT-SUN

Sharp-shinned Hawk        FRI only

Cooper’s Hawk        FRI-SUN

Broad-winged Hawk        FRI only

Swainson’s Hawk        SAT-SUN

Red-tailed Hawk        FRI-SAT-SUN

Great Horned Owl        FRI-SUN

Belted Kingfisher        FRI-SAT-SUN

Red-bellied Woodpecker        FRI-SAT

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker        FRI only

Downy Woodpecker        FRI-SAT

Hairy Woodpecker        FRI-SAT

Northern Flicker        FRI-SAT-SUN

Pileated Woodpecker        FRI only

American Kestrel        FRI-SAT

Peregrine Falcon        FRI-SAT-SUN

Eastern Phoebe        FRI-SAT

Blue-headed Vireo        SUN

Blue Jay        FRI-SAT-SUN

American Crow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Horned Lark        FRI-SAT-SUN

Purple Martin        FRI-SAT

Tree Swallow        FRI-SAT-SUN

N. Rough-winged Swallow        SAT

Bank Swallow        FRI only

Cliff Swallow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Barn Swallow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Black-capped Chickadee        FRI-SAT

White-breasted Nuthatch        FRI only

Brown Creeper        FRI only

House Wren        FRI only

Sedge Wren        SAT-SUN

Marsh Wren        FRI-SAT

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher        FRI only

Golden-crowned Kinglet        FRI only

Ruby-crowned Kinglet        FRI-SAT-SUN

Eastern Bluebird        FRI-SAT

Swainson’s Thrush        SUN

American Robin        FRI-SAT-SUN

Brown Thrasher        FRI-SAT-SUN

European Starling        FRI-SAT-SUN

House Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

American Pipit        SUN

House Finch        FRI-SAT-SUN

American Goldfinch        FRI-SAT

Chipping Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Clay-colored Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Field Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Vesper Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Lark Sparrow        SAT

Savannah Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

LeConte’s Sparrow        SAT-SUN

Song Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Lincoln’s Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Swamp Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

White-throated Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

Harris’s Sparrow        FRI-SAT-SUN

White-crowned Sparrow        SAT-SUN

Yellow-headed Blackbird        FRI-SAT-SUN

Western Meadowlark        FRI-SAT-SUN

Baltimore Oriole        SAT

Red-winged Blackbird        FRI-SAT-SUN

Brown-headed Cowbird        FRI-SAT-SUN

Brewer’s Blackbird        SAT

Common Grackle        FRI-SAT-SUN

Black-and-white Warbler        FRI-SUN

Orange-crowned Warbler        FRI-SAT-SUN

Yellow Warbler        FRI-SAT-SUN

Blackpoll Warbler        SAT

Palm Warbler        FRI-SAT-SUN

Pine Warbler        SUN

Yellow-rumped Warbler        FRI-SAT-SUN

Northern Cardinal        FRI only