[rba] [mou] Henslow's Sparrow at Rothsay; Yellow Rail update
rba at moumn.org
rba at moumn.org
Wed Jun 11 12:10:31 CDT 2008
Late last week, Parker Backstrom found a Henslow's Sparrow at Rothsay
WMA, Wilkin Co, and it was relocated by the VENT tour group on June 9.
The location was just east of the traditional Greater Prairie-chicken
lek: from the south side of the town of Rothsay, turn W on Wilkin Co
Rd 26, go 4 mi and turn N on 300th Ave, go 2 mi and turn W on 190th
St, then go 0.1 mi to the first 2-track road which goes N, and start
listening along this road for the Henslow's song.
On Monday, we heard it from 0.1 mi up the 2-track road and saw it ~0.1
mi to the west. There were also several Le Conte's Sparrows singing in
this same area. (Also note that earlier that day we were unable to
relocate the previously-reported Burrowing Owl in Moorhead; we had
also been unable to find it on June 6.)
Then, on the evening of June 9, we heard 2 or 3 Yellow Rails (and saw
one of these) in the McGregor Marsh in Aitkin Co. They were heard to
the east of Hwy 65, 1 mi S of Hwy 210, and there is an ATV trail/road
here which crosses the highway and provides walking access into the
marsh (note that regular cars/vans/SUVs are not permitted on this
road). We walked ~150 yards E on this trail and got close enough to
the calling rails that we were able to see one of them without getting
This was the only location where we heard any Yellow Rails, and they
did not start calling until ~10:45 pm. We did not hear the rail which
had been calling (and which the Minn Birding Weekends group had seen)
on May 31 close to the east side of Hwy 65, ~1/2 mi S of Hwy 210.
There were, however, a few Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrows still
singing in this area on June 9.
Elsewhere in Aitkin Co on June 10, we found a Black-backed Woodpecker
along the Hedbom Forest Road, 2.4 mi W of the east gate/state forest
sign, or 0.4 mi W of the St Louis Co line. (We had also heard from Kim
Risen that there had recently been an Am Three-toed Woodpecker farther
west of here along Hedbom, but the exact location was unclear and we
did not find it.) Kim Eckert
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