Waterbird Count, April 24

Yet another productive day of counting waterbirds out on the straits.  Although the winds were whipping across the water from the east all day, many birds- including raptors- were on the move.  It was a bit unexpected to see the three Bonaparte’s Gulls loafing in the early hours since they are normally seen moving past McGulpin Point in the afternoon.  The number of visitors to the lake shore was surprising given the strong winds, and I was pleased that one of the visitors was this years naturalist for the MSRW:  Frances Whalen.  Although I wish I could have produced an interesting bird for her to see, she came during the final hour, which unfortunately has a reputation for being one of the least exciting hours of the work day.

Canada Goose – 4
Redhead– 86
Lesser Scaup – 1
White-winged Scoter – 14
Long-tailed Duck – 163
Common Goldeneye – 3
Common Merganser – 9
Red-breasted Merganser – 119
Common Loon – 9
Horned Grebe – 2
Double-crested Cormorant – 112
duck sp. – 37
Great Egret – 1
Bonaparte’s Gull – 3

Other Species:
Great Blue Heron – 5
Turkey Vulture – 63
Sharp-shinned Hawk – 3
Accipiter sp. – 4
Northern Harrier – 2
Bald Eagle – 5
Broad-winged Hawk – 41
Red-shouldered Hawk – 3
Red-tailed Hawk – 8
Rough-legged Hawk – 1
Buteo sp. – 18
Sandhill Crane – 2
American Kestrel – 2
Merlin – 2