Waterbird Count, September 18

Nice numbers of ducks moving today, unfortunately most were too distant to ID…. The majority that I could ID were Redheads. Most of the unidentified ducks I saw landed to the east of the Mackinac Bridge. Aside from ducks, I had nice loon and eagle numbers. Another highlight was two Bonaparte’s Gulls among a feeding frenzy of Ring-billed Gulls, Herring Gulls, and Double-crested Cormorants. These species all seem to congregate together to feed in productive areas. I’m not sure what exactly is going on, but it seems the Cormorants cause fish to swim closer to the surface for the Gulls to catch? I filmed a short video of it, which I’ll link below.

Canada Goose – 21
Mallard – 1
Redhead – 173
Greater/Lesser Scaup – 6
White-winged Scoter – 2
Common Merganser – 13
duck sp. – 231
Red-throated Loon – 1
Common Loon – 30
loon sp. – 5
Horned Grebe – 6
Red-necked Grebe – 12
Double-crested Cormorant – 47
Bonaparte’s Gulls – 2

Turkey Vulture – 10
Sharp-shinned Hawk – 3
Bald Eagle – 32

Monarch – 2

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqbddNnYggA&w=560&h=315]