[mou] Trump Swan w/ neckband - long

Dave Bartkey screechowl at charter.net
Sat Apr 12 18:16:43 CDT 2008

Hi everyone,

  I birded Rice and LeSueur Counties today and I found a pair of Trumpeter
Swans; one with a neckband, on a marsh immediately west of Sprague Lake. The
one with the band was initially sitting on a muskrat house, but after a few
minutes went into the water and started swimming toward my car along with
the unbanded one. I left at that point so as not to disturb them any
further, but not before getting a number from the red neckband: 4M6. Anyone
with info on this bird, I'd sure love to hear it! With the one sitting on
the muskrat house, I thought maybe there was a chance of nesting (?) but
while I was stopped checking out Sprague Lake, the swans flew over,
vocalizing, and flew east. I don't believe they kept going though. I think
they landed on Sprague Lake's east end. Maybe the will nest here. Hope so!


  I saw my first Yellow-rumped Warblers today, both at River Bend Nature
Center and Sakatah State Park. Also, I had a FOY Horned Grebe on Sakatah
Lake in LeSueur County. 


  I knew it was a good day for Hermit Thrushes today as I saw 8 of them at
River Bend on my walk this morning, but I wasn't prepared for what I saw at
Sakatah SP! It is no exaggeration when I say that I had no less than 45
Hermit Thrushes at the park today! That is by far a very, very conservative
estimate as I was doing my best to carefully count them as I walked. I say
this because there were times, for example, when I would take a couple of
steps and 4 or 5 of them would fly a little bit on the left side of the
trail, and at the same time 5 or 6 of them (or more) would fly on the right.
It became very difficult to keep track of them all, for sure! Making sure I
wasn't just pushing the whole group along, I would only take my initial
count upon encountering said group. Once I "lost" them, I would subsequently
encounter another group further down the trail. This went on all afternoon.
And I needed a Hermit Thrush for LeSueur County, I guess I got one! :-) 


  Also at the SP, I saw 5 sapsuckers, 2 Winter Wrens, both kinglets and a
Barred Owl. 


  At River Bend, I had 6 species of sparrow, a couple of sapsuckers, both
kinglets, and a Great-horned Owl being heavily harassed by crows. Poor guy!


  In both counties there were lots of Red-breasted Mergansers, Pelicans, and
over 30 Great Egrets scattered around Wells Lake in Rice.


Good birding!


Dave Bartkey

Faribault, MN

screechowl at charter.net 

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