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International_smWelcome to Northwestern Minnesota where a unique collection of habitats provide homes for a tremendous variety of birds. Pine forests, deciduous woodlands, native tallgrass prairie, aspen parkland, sand dunes (remnants of Glacial Lake Agassiz), calcareous fens, bogs, marshes, large and small lakes and rivers make up the transition zone that offers over 275 species of birds. Most of the sites are on public land or private reserves open to the public. There are not facilities at all sites.

Some of the unique “lifers” you can see here include the Northern Goshawk, Ruffed Grouse, Greater Prairie-Chicken, Yellow Rail, American Woodcock, Snowy Owl, Northern Hawk Owl, Great Gray Owl, Three-toed and Black-backed Woodpeckers, Boreal Chickadee; Bay-breasted, Connecticut and Mourning Warblers; Red and White-winged Crossbills and Pine and Evening Grosbeaks.

This Web site will help you get started. It provides a reference for beginning to advanced birders. The trail is over 200 miles in length with 45 sites to view birds. These sites offer some of the most spectacular birding in the state, along with scenic beauty and friendly communities. Although spring, summer and fall offer an abundance of birds, winter is also an exciting time to see winter specialties.

The International Pine to Prairie Birding Trail is dynamic. Birding trail logo signs are in place at a number of birding locations; however, complete signage is not currently in place. Interpretive signs are in place at featured sites; the future will bring additional signage and informational improvements.

American GoldfinchCurrently, check with Tourism Officials at Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Pelican Rapids, Roseau, Thief River Falls and Warroad for information on bird sightings and assistance with trip planning.

The International Pine to Prairie Birding Trail is a unique partnership between the NW Minnesota communities of Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Pelican Rapids, Roseau, Thief River Falls and Warroad; Manitoba, participating agencies U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Non-game Wildlife Program, Explore Minnesota Tourism; the birding entities of the Minnesota Ornithologist’s Union, Audubon Minnesota, Lakes Area Birding Club and the Agassiz Chapter of the National Audubon Society.

 

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 21, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 21, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

The last wave of migrants is coming to the northwest this week. All the warblers are being seen throughout the area, and the vireos and wrens are starting to be reported. Weather this week has been warming slowly and winds have been light.

In Grant County, Charlene Nelson reported INDIGO BUNTING and ORCHARD ORIOLE on May 19. HARRIS’S SPARROW was seen on May 20.

Marion and Gary Otnes in Otter Tail County observed SORA, SANDHILL CRANE, SPOTTED SANDPIPER, BLACK TERN, BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO, WOOD THRUSH, and EASTERN KINGBIRD on May 20. Alice Martin saw CAPE MAY WARBLER, and SCARLET TANAGER on May 21.

From Hubbard County, Marshall Howe reported LEAST FLYCATCHER, and SCARLET TANAGER on May 15, EASTERN KINGBIRD, GREAT CRESTED FLYCATCHER, WARBLING VIREO, INDIGO BUNTING , and GRAY CATBIRD on May 16, RED-EYED VIREO and MOURNING WARBLER on May 17, EASTERN WOOD-PEWEE and COMMON TERN on May 18, and RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER, and YELLOW-THROATED VIREO on May 19. An occupied BROAD-WINGED HAWK nest was seen on May 20.

At the Detroit Lake birding festival last weekend, 28 species of warblers were found including a BLUE-WINGED WARBLER spotted by Bob Janssen. Only 12 species of shorebirds were seen due to heavy rain that came through the region covering up the mudflats. A trip to Felton Prairie in Clay county saw all the expected specialties being found including UPLAND SANDPIPER, MARBLED GODWIT, CHESTNUT-COLLARED LONGSPUR, and GRASSHOPPER SPARROW. At Tamarac NWR on May 16, Heather Hundt found a YELLOW-BILLED CUCKOO and reported it on eBird. Also from eBird was a NORTHERN MOCKINGBIRD reported by Shawn Goodchild at Tamarac NWR on May 16.

Joanne Johnson in Polk County reported BLACK-THROATED GREEN WARBLER, NASHVILLE WARBLER, PALM WARBLER, and YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER on May 15. On that day, Russ Wilbur observed a RED-HEADED WOODPECKER at their traditional nest site at the East Grand Forks campground. Two COMMON NIGHTHAWKS were seen over East Grand Forks by Sandy Aubol on May 19. Other species that she reported that day included TURKEY VULTURE, OSPREY, BROAD-WINGED HAWK, OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER, SEDGE WREN, VEERY, GRAY-CHEEKDED THRUSH, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER and several other species of warbler.

In Pennington County this week, I have hundreds of PINE SISKINS at the feeders. Both RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS and RED-BELLIED WOODPECKERS are being seen at the feeders. Today there was a big increase in SWAINSON’S THRUSHES and PALM WARBLERS.

Larry Wilebski in Kittson County reported SHORT-EARED OWL, EASTERN TOWHEE, and WILSON’S WARBLER on May 15, RED-NECKED GREBE, CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER, ORCHARD ORIOLE and SCARLET TANAGER on May 18, and a SHORT-EARED OWL on May 19.

Thanks to all who sent in their sightings this week.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, May 28, 2015

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 14, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 14, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

What a cold windy and rainy week this has been! We were dry, and the recent rains have in some measure alleviated that. It has been hard on the birds however, as the temperatures have not been above the low fifties and high forties all week. That said, migration is proceeding, and today with south winds, there was a large migration.

Reported this week in northwestern counties were RUBY-CROWNED KINGLETS, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLETS, RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD, most of the swallows, SONG SPARROW, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW, SAVANNAH SPARROW, WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW, WHITE-THROATED SPARROW,HARRIS’S SPARROW, LINCOLN’S SPARROW, LARK SPARROW, and many PINE SISKINS. Warblers observed this week, mostly yesterday and today , included YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, YELLOW WARBLER, NASHVILLE WARBLER, BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER, AMERICAN REDSTART, ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, OVENBIRD, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER, TENNESSEE WARBLER, CAPE MAY WARBLER, BAYBREASTED WARBLER, BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER, NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH, BLACK-THROATED GREEN WARBLER, CONNECTICUT WARBLER, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, and WILSON’S WARBLER.

Beth Siverhus reporting from Roseau County mentioned RUFFED GROUSE, AMERICAN BITTERN, GRAY CATBIRD, BROWN THRASHER, and YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD. At the Warroad docks were FORSTER’S TERN, COMMON TERN, and FRANKLIN’S GULL.

Peter Grecinger in Goodland , Itasca County had a PAINTED BUNTING visiting his feeders on May 8 and May 9. Let me know and I can put you in contact with him.

Gary Tischer saw a GREAT BLUE HERON in Marshall County on May 12.

Here in Pennington County east of Thief River Falls I had 8 species of warblers in the yard today, May 14. RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD, SWAINSON’S THRUSH, and LEAST FLYCATCHER arrived also today also. Gary Tischer reported that he had a report of 2 pairs of CANADA GEESE with goslings on the Red Lake River this week. An EASTERN TOWHEE was seen by Tony Hoglo a half mile north of the Smiley Bridge southeast of the city.

In Polk County, Sandy Aubol reported a RED-HEADED WOODPECKER on May 8 in East Grand Forks. BARN SWALLOW, BANK SWALLOW, CLIFF SWALLOW, and ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK, were seen there on May 8. On the 9th, SOLITARY SANDPIPER, SPOTTED SANDPIPER, PURPLE MARTIN, and LARK SPARROW were observed. A PEREGRINE FALCON was spotted on May 11 on the East Grand Forks water tower. Many species of warblers are being seen along the Red River in the greenway. Sandy had a SCARLET TANAGER and two ORCHARD ORIOLES in her yard on May 14. Sandy Martens reported a HOUSE WREN and BROWN THRASHER on May 9, and a NORTHERN CARDINAL visiting daily in the point area of East Grand Forks.

Matt Mecklenburg saw a late ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK south of the Magneson WMA in Clay County on May 12.

In Becker County, Linda Schuman at the Rainbow Resort reported RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD, CAPE MAY WARBLER, and PINE SISKINS this week. On May 11, Dave and Betty Hochhalter saw a ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK in Detroit Lakes.

Marshall Howe in Hubbard County reported GREEN HERON, VEERY, and OVENBIRD on May 8, SWAINSON’S THRUSH, BLUE-HEADED VIREO, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, BLACK-THROATED GREEN WARBLER, EASTERN TOWHEE, and SWAMP SPARROW on May 9, and CASPIAN TERN on May 11.

In Otter Tail County, Kassie Pesch, reported on eBird a CONNECTICUT WARBLER near Perham on May 8. A WESTERN TANAGER also was reported on e-Bird by Meredith Lindsey near Wadena on May 10. A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER being seen at the Pickle Factory 8 miles outside of Vergas was reported by Pam Lanz.

From Douglas County, John Ellis reported WARBLING VIREO, YELLOW-THROATED VIREO, and SEDGE WREN on May 9 in addition to several species of sparrows and warblers.

Thanks to all who sent in their sightings this week.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, May 21, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 7, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, May 7, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

The warm weather we had earlier this week has brought in more migrants. Most counties reported OSPREY, PURPLE MARTIN, BALTIMORE ORIOLE, and most of the sparrows. As far north as Polk County, warblers seen in one or more northwest counties included PINE WARBLER, PALM WARBLER, BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH, YELLOW WARBLER, NORTHERN PARULA, ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, and NASHVILLE WARBLER.

Steve Midthune reported a WHITE-WINGED DOVE in his yard in Detroit Lakes at 15368 Sunset Hill Drive on May 1.

In Clay County, Jesse Ellis reported that a SCISSOR-TAILED FLYCATCHER was seen and photographed by Kara Susag, who was unable to relocate the bird which was last seen flying north.

At Thief River Falls wastewater treatment ponds, Sandy Aubol found an AMERICAN AVOCET on May 1.

From Otter Tail County, Dan and Sandy Thimgan reported PURPLE MARTIN, and FIELD SPARROW on May 1, BALTIMORE ORIOLE on May 3, GRAY CATBIRD and WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW on May 4, FORSTER’S TERN on May 5, and AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN and ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK on May 6. Alma Ronningen added HOUSE WREN on May 5, and AMERICAN REDSTART and RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD on May 7.

Marshall Howe in Hubbard County observed BROAD-WINGED HAWK, ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK, and BARRED OWL on May 1, BARN SWALLOW, BROWN THRASHER, and WESTERN MEADOWLARK on May 3, LINCOLN’S SPARROW on May 4, and HOUSE WREN and HARRIS’S SPARROW on May 7 among others.

From Becker County, Sandy Aubol reported many species of warblers already at Tamarac NWR on May 3. Other species seen included FORSTER’S TERN, SWAINSON’S THRUSH, HARRIS’S SPARROW, and WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW. Steve Midthune reported there were shorebirds at Hamden Slough NWR on May 4, and he also observed several GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE.

Patrick Beauzay reported an EASTERN WHIP-POOR-WILL in Clay County on May 4.

In Polk County, Gary Tischer reported on May 7 that there are still 400 -500 TUNDRA SWANS still at the rice paddies along the Clearwater River in the eastern part of the county. Sandy Aubol found an UPLAND SANDPIPER along US 2 at the western edge of Glacial Ridge NWR on May 3. She also spotted an OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER in the East Grand Forks greenway on May 4. She saw a BLUE-HEADED VIREO in the yard on May 5, LINCOLN’S SPARROW, HARRIS’S SPARROW, and WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW on May 7. Bruce Flaig had BALTIMORE ORIOLE and ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK in the southern part of the county on May 5.

In addition to the AMERICAN AVOCET, Sandy Aubol found EARED GREBE, HORNED GREBE, and WILSON’S PHALAROPE at the Thief River Falls wastewater treatment ponds in Pennington County on May 1. Jeff Lannoye reported PURPLE MARTIN in Thief River Falls on May 4. A LINCOLN’S SPARROW showed up at our feeders on May 3, and WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW on May 6. A NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH and BALTIMORE ORIOLE arrived today, May 7.

From Itasca State Park, Connie Cox reported SWAINSON’S THRUSH, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, VESPER SPARROW , and many other migrants this week.

Jim Strommer in Bemidji, Beltrami County, saw two HARRIS’S SPARROWS at the RV Park there on May 4.

Beth Siverhus in Roseau County reported BUFFLEHEAD , FRANKLIN’S GULL, BELTED KINGFISHER, PURPLE MARTIN, BROWN THRASHER, BROWN CREEPER, and PINE SISKINS, and many other migrants this week. An EVENING GROSBEAK visited her feeders in Warroad on May 3. Kris Guggisberg saw a GREAT GRAY OWL northeast of Roseau this week. On May 4, a CACKLING GOOSE was present at the Warroad city park. BALTIMORE ORIOLE arrived on May 5.

In Lake of the Woods County, Gretchen Mehmel reported that a NORTHERN HAWK OWL had been seen just north of McDonagh’s Corner on the East Moose River Road on April 30.

Thanks to all who sent in their sightings this week.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, May 14, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 30, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 30, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

Finally, the weather seems to have turned, and warmer conditions are here. We in the northwest remain dry , however, but a little rain is forecast for tonight. Migration is increasing and many first of the year species have been reported this week. Accordingly, I will only report the highlights, but keep on sending in your reports as all are noted.

Two EURASIAN WIGEONS were reported this week. One in Kittson Count was seen at Twin Lakes by several folks this week as recently as today, and one was seen by Ron Erpelding and Herb Dingmann at Agassiz NWR in Marshall County on April 30. The latter bird was at Mud River Pool behind the locked gates. A key can be obtained from the office if you can return it the same day before the staff leaves. Due to activities in the refuge, the time when the office closes varies.

A ROCK WREN was observed at the Lake Bronson dam in Kittson County on April 25 and reported to eBird by Chantel Sledge. Several of us have looked for the bird to no avail and believe it has moved on.

Ron Erpelding and Herb Dingmann found what is believed to be a CLARK’S GREBE hanging out with two WESTERN GREBES at the Karlstad Wastewater Treatment ponds in Kittson County on April 30.

An OSPREY was seen at Lake Bronson State Park on April 29. Today, I found a HORNED GREBE at the Karlstad WTP, and heard MARBLED GODWITS in Kittson County.

This week in Pennington County, I saw a BROWN CREEPER in the yard on April 25, EASTERN BLUEBIRD and NORTHERN FLICKER appeared on April 26, WHITE-THROATED SPARROW and BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD on April 27. A COMMON LOON was seen in the Red Lake River. On April 30, a BROWN THRASHER is coming to our feeder.

Sandy Aubol in Polk County reported HORNED GREBE and RED-NECKED GREBE on April 24, and AMERICAN WOODCOCK, WINTER WREN and ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER in East Grand Forks on April 25. At the Agassiz Valley impoundment on April 26, she observed WILLET, MARBLED GODWIT, HUDSONIAN GODWIT, and ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK. A BROAD-WINGED HAWK was seen on April 27 in East Grand Forks.

From Hubbard County, Marshall Howe reported WHITE-THROATED SPARROW , AMERICAN TREE SPARROW, and PURPLE MARTIN on April 25, PINE WARBLER on April 26, and CHIPPING SPARROW on April 27.

Alice Martin in Otter Tail County saw BONAPARTE’S GULL, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER, and YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER on April 24.

Thanks to Alice Martin, Marshall Howe, Ron Erpelding and Herb Dingmann, and Sandy Aubol for their reports.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, May 7, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 23, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 23, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

After a pleasant weekend, it has been a cold and very windy week. Due to the strong north winds, migration has slowed, but there have been reports that most of the ducks have been seen in the northwest, and a very few shorebirds are returning. SANDHILL CRANES are back and starting to nest. EASTERN PHOEBES, TREE SWALLOWS, HERMIT THRUSHES, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS, and PINE SISKINS have been reported throughout. RED-TAILED HAWKS and NORTHERN HARRIERS are everywhere.

A EURASIAN WIGEON was found by Bob Dunlap in Kittson County from the Twin Lakes overlook. I tried for it on April 23 to no avail although it may be still there among the many American coots and several other species of ducks.

In Becker County, John Hockema and Ben Fritchman observed a CINNAMON TEAL on Balsam Lake on April 18.

Scott Dirks around Lake Osakis in Todd and Douglas Counties found a lot of waterfowl around the lake. WESTERN GREBE was also seen there.

In Otter Tail County, Alice Martin reported DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS on April 16, RED-NECKED GREBE on April 17, and WHITE-THROATED SPARROW on April 22.

Marshall Howe in Hubbard County saw YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER on April 16, HERMIT THRUSH on April 17, GREATER YELLOWLEGS and NORTHERN CARDINAL on April 18 and many PINE SISKINS on April 21.

Around Itasca State Park, Connie Cox reported COMMON LOON, RUFFED GROUSE, NORTHERN GOSHAWK, OSPREY, AMERICAN WOODCOCK, BELTED KINGFISHER, MERLIN, WOODTHRUSH, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, and RUSTY BLACKBIRD this week among others.

Steve Midthune reported that Becker County has some mudflats and shorebirds are starting to come in. He mentioned PECTORAL SANDPIPERS, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, LESSER YELLOWLEGS, SORA, and YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRDS have been seen.

Sandy Aubol reported AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN, GREAT EGRET, RUDDY DUCK, and HUDSONIAN GODWIT at the Brandt-Angus impoundment in Polk County on April 18. MARBLED GODWIT was seen at the Agassiz Valley impoundment. Shelley Steva and I visited the rice paddies in the eastern part of the county that day, and found many TUNDRA SWANS, with a few duck species mixed in. We also saw TURKEY VULTURE, PECTORAL SANDPIPERS, AMERICAN COOT, and VESPER SPARROWS.

On April 18, Shelley and I found a similar mix of waterfowl in the Pennington County rice paddies, also MARBLED GODWIT, HERMIT THRUSH, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, FOX SPARROW, and WESTERN MEADOWLARK in the area. A COOPER’S HAWK visited our bird feeders on April 22.

In Marshall County, Sandy Aubol saw BONAPARTE’S GULLS at that side of the Agassiz Valley impoundment. Beth Siverhus visited Agassiz NWR on April 18 and found a large variety of species including TRUMPETER SWAN, many ducks, KILLDEER, DUNLIN, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, LESSER YELLOWLEGS, LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER, MARBLED GODWIT, FRANKLIN’S GULLS, EASTERN PHOEBE, and HERMIT THRUSH. ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS and SANDHILL CRANES were also seen in the county.

Beth Siverhus saw a GREAT GRAY OWL in Beltrami County along MN 72.

At the Clearwater County rice paddies, Shelley Steva and I found all of the common ducks except for ruddy ducks on April 18. RED-TAILED HAWKS were also seen.

Species seen in Kittson County in the Twin Lakes area on April 23 included TURKEY VULTURE, SANDHILL CRANE, AMERICAN COOT, MARBLED GODWIT, WILSON’S SNIPE, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLETS, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, and WESTERN MEADOWLARK.

In Roseau County, Beth Siverhus reported SHARP-TAILED GROUSE, SHARP-SHINNED HAWK, SANDHILL CRANE, WILSON’S SNIPE, AMERICAN WOODCOCK, NORTHERN HAWK OWL, NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL, DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT, MERLIN, HERMIT THRUSH, and FOX SPARROW among others.

Lake of the Woods County species seen by Beth included NORTHERN GOSHAWK, SANDHILL CRANE, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK, SHARP-TAILED GROUSE, RUFFED GROUSE, SPRUCE GROUSE, GRAY JAY, HERMIT THRUSH, and PINE SISKIN. Most of these were seen in the Beltrami Island State Forest.

Thanks to all who sent in their sightings this week.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, April 30, 2015

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 16, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 16, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

Spring has finally arrived in the north, and the flood of migrants is increasing. The first wave of returning species includes most of the ducks, the resident hawks, KILLDEER, MOURNING DOVE, some gulls, NORTHERN FLICKER, YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER, TREE SWALLOW, a large variety of sparrows, RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD, WESTERN MEADOWLARK, COMMON GRACKLE, and PURPLE FINCH.

Gretchen Mehmel reported that a group doing a goshawk survey in the Beltrami Island State Forest on April 11 found a SNOWY OWL at Norris Camp of all places. A GREAT GRAY OWL was also seen on Dick’s Parkway during the survey, and at least one NORTHERN GOSHAWK was reported.

In Roseau County, Beth Siverhus observed a flock of BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS at Warroad on April 10.

Hillary Stoltman found a male SNOWY OWL 10 miles east of Fourtown in Beltrami County on April 9.

In Marshall County, Cliff Steinhauer reported SANDHILL CRANE and 14 SHARP-TAILED GROUSE on April 9. Gary Tischer reported an EASTERN BLUEBIRD seen by Jerome Sorenson. Gary saw a FRANKLIN’S GULL at Agassiz NWR on April 13, reported a major migration of TUNDRA SWANS on April 14, and found two GREATER YELLOWLEGS near Strandquist on April 15.

Here in Pennington County, a pair of TRUMPETER SWANS came to our part of the Red Lake River on April 10. On April 12, there were DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS and HOODED MERGANSERS, and on April 14, twenty WOOD DUCKS were seen feeding on the lawn.

In southern Polk County, Bruce Flaig reported EASTERN PHOEBE, and COMMON LOON on April 11. I saw a large flock of TUNDRA SWANS along CR 252 , and a MERLIN near the campus of UMC Crookston today, April 16. Sandy Aubol in East Grand Forks reported NORTHERN FLICKER, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, HERMIT THRUSH, and a variety of sparrow species along the river on April 13.

Steve Midthune in Becker County saw a GREATER YELLOWLEGS at Bisson Lake at Hamden Slough NWR on April 10.

From Hubbard County, Marshall Howe reported TUNDRA SWANS east of Lake George on April 10, OSPREY and a large flock of PINE SISKINS on April 11, NORTHERN FLICKER on April 12, YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER on April 13, a TREE SWALLOW on April 14, EASTERN PHOEBE, FOX SPARROW, and PURPLE FINCH on April 15, and VESPER SPARROW on April 16.

Otter Tail County sightings sent in by Alice Martin included HERRING GULL on April 10, GREEN-WINGED TEAL on April 12, BLUE-WINGED TEAL on April 13, PIED-BILLED GREBE and BELTED KINGFISHER on April 14, and LESSER SCAUP on April 16. Alma Ronningen observed BROWN CREEPER on April 11, OSPREY on April 12, BROWN THRASHER and YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER on April 16.

John Ellis found a EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVE at the public landing in Osakis in Douglas County on April 9.

Thanks to all who sent in sightings this week.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, April 23, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 9, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 9, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

This has been a mixed weather week, with a little snow, a few clouds, and some wonderful sunshine. Migration is picking up, and with the ice disappearing, the waterfowl are coming in. Small numbers of most of the ducks are being reported with, of course, more of the traditional early migrants like mergansers and wood ducks.

Alice Martin in Otter Tail County reported COMMON LOON, AMERICAN WIGEON, and RING-NECKED DUCK on April 5 near Perham.

From Hubbard County, Marshall Howe observed a GOLDEN EAGLE, RING-BILLED GULL, FOX SPARROW, and PINE SISKIN on April 5, TURKEY VULTURE on April 6, COMMON LOON, RING-NECKED DUCK, COMMON MERGANSER, and SONG SPARROW on April 7, and BUFFLEHEAD on April 9.

In Clay County, Matt Mecklenburg reported about 30 GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE amid a group of dancing GREATER PRAIRIE-CHICKENS. Other species seen included SANDHILL CRANE and MERLIN.

Sandy Aubol saw a male SNOWY OWL in Polk County on April 4 near the intersection of CR 23 with CR 20. In the area of the impoundments in Polk County she saw RED-BREASTED MERGANSER, TUNDRA SWAN, NORTHERN PINTAIL, GREEN-WINGED TEAL, WOOD DUCK, RING-NECKED DUCK, NORTHERN HARRIER, SANDHILL CRANE, AMERICAN KESTREL, BREWER’S BLACKBIRDS, RUSTY BLACKBIRD, and YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRDS.

Shelley Steva found a pair of SANDHILL CRANES looking as if they will nest along Red Lake CR 1 on April 7.

In Pennington County, I saw two COMMON MERGANSERS, FOX SPARROW, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, and AMERICAN TREE SPARROW on April 3. A MERLIN took a BOHEMIAN WAXWING in our yard on April 5, and several RING-NECKED DUCKS appeared on the Red Lake River on April 7.

Sandy Aubol found COMMON MERGANSER, COMMON GOLDENEYE, and NORTHERN PINTAIL in Marshall County near the Agassiz Valley impoundments on April 4. On April 9, Gary Tischer saw a TURKEY VULTURE south of Newfolden, SHARP-TAILED GROUSE, and a KILLDEER.

In the area around Itasca State Park this week, Connie Cox reported HOODED MERGANSER, WOOD DUCK, GREAT BLUE HERON, SANDHILL CRANE, SHARP-SHINNED HAWK, RED-TAILED HAWK , AMERICAN KESTREL, RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER, PURPLE FINCH, and RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD.

Beth Siverhus saw a male SNOWY OWL one mile west of Warroad in Roseau County on April 6. Other species seen in the county included RUFFED GROUSE, AMERICAN WOODCOCK, NORTHERN SHRIKE, AMERICAN KESTREL, MERLIN, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK, DARK-EYED JUNCO, PURPLE FINCH, and RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD.

Thanks to Alice Martin, Beth Siverhus, Connie Cox, Gary Tischer, Marshall Howe, Matt Mecklenburg, Sandy Aubol and Shelley Steva for their reports.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday April 16, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 2, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, April 2, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

With warmer weather, many returning migrants have been reported this week. Included are enormous flocks of AMERICAN ROBINS and DARK-EYED JUNCOS, COMMON GRACKLES, and RED-WINGED BLACKBIRDS, and a greater variety of waterfowl. Some COMMON REDPOLLS have been reported but the numbers are greatly diminished. That said, the warm weather of April 1st appears to have been a cruel April Fool’s trick, as the 30-40 mph winds today have brought the temperatures down to freezing again.

In Roseau County, Gary Tischer saw a SNOWY OWL 3 miles south of Roseau on MN 89 and a half mile west on CR 114 on March 31.

In Marshall County, Gary found 6 WESTERN MEADOWLARKS on CR 28 west of Strandquist, and some SANDHILL CRANES along US 59 on March 31.

Here in Pennington County, the Red Lake River is mostly ice free, except through the town of Thief River Falls, and with the ice out came some WOOD DUCKS, and HOODED MERGANSERS on April 1. On March 31, I heard SANDHILL CRANES migrating in the night. During the day on March 31, I saw a pair of calling TRUMPETER SWANS in the river; other species returning that day included KILLDEER, COMMON GRACKLES, RED-WINGED BLACKBIRDS, and hundreds of AMERICAN ROBINS. On April 2, there were PURPLE FINCHES in the yard, and a NORTHERN SHRIKE scared hundreds of robins out of our yard.

On March 31, Zeann Linder observed a male SNOWY OWL along Polk County road 21 near Sherack, standing out like a beacon on the bare brown fields. In East Grand Forks, Sandy Aubol reported MOURNING DOVE, and COMMON GRACKLE on March 30, COMMON GOLDENEYE, MERLIN , RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER, and AMERICAN TREE SPARROW on March 31, FOX SPARROW and NORTHERN FLICKER on April 1 , and SONG SPARROW on April 2.

Marshall Howe in Dorset , Hubbard County, reported SANDHILL CRANES on March 26, EASTERN BLUEBIRD on March 27, diminished numbers of PINE SISKINS and COMMON REDPOLLS on March 28. Large numbers of AMERICAN ROBINS, and an AMERICAN WOODCOCK arrived on March 30. GREAT BLUE HERON, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, BROWN CREEPER, FOX SPARROW, and COMMON GRACKLE arrived on April 1.

From Otter Tail County, Alice Martin reported COMMON MERGANSER, HOODED MERGANSER, and WOOD DUCK in the Perham area, and in New York Mills, there were KILLDEER, DARK-EYED JUNCOS, NORTHERN CARDINALS, PINE SISKINS, and HOUSE FINCHES. At Little Pine Lake, she saw BUFFLEHEAD, AMERICAN COOT and NORTHERN SHRIKE all on April 1.

Benjamin Eckhoff in Douglas County reported this week a big increase in waterfowl with a variety of duck species arriving. About 30 CEDAR WAXWINGS were seen. He reported large flocks of AMERICAM ROBINS and AMERICAN CROWS. Among other species seen in the Lake Carlos area were TUNDRA SWANS, SNOW GOOSE, RED-BREASTED MERGANSER, BALD EAGLES, RED-TAILED HAWKS, RED-SHOULDERED HAWK, GREAT BLUE HERONS, SANDHILL CRANES, KILLDEER, YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER, AMERICAN KESTREL, NORTHERN SHRIKE, EASTERN BLUEBIRD and AMERICAN TREE SPARROW.

Thanks to Alice Martin, Benjamin Eckhoff, Gary Tischer, Marshall Howe, Sandy Aubol, and Zeann Linder for their reports.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Friday, April 10, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, March 25, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, March 25, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

Though the weather has been cold this week, spring arrivals continue to be reported. HORNED LARKS are paired off and preparing to nest, most of the summer breeding raptors have arrived in small numbers. Several large groups of AMERICAN CROWS have been reported this week, and the first reports of large numbers of migrating AMERICAN ROBINS have come in. That said, the cold has dampened the human activity more than that of the birds.

From Hubbard County, Marshall Howe reported NORTHERN HARRIER on March 20, RED-TAILED HAWK, COMMON REDPOLL, HOARY REDPOLL, PINE SISKINS, and PURPLE FINCH on March 21, and RED CROSSBILLS, and DARK-EYED JUNCOS on March 22.

John Loegering heard a LONG-EARED OWL calling along the Red Lake River in Crookston, Polk County on March 16, but has not heard it since. Sandy Martens reported a group of over 200 AMERICAN ROBINS at the point in East Grand Forks on March 23.

In Red Lake County, Shelley Steva found a flock of over 200 AMERICAN CROWS on March 23.

In Pennington County on March 21, I found a large flock of over 300 AMERICAN CROWS near the intersection of CR 27 and CR 3. These birds were still there the next day.

Connie Cox reported from the Itasca SP area on March 25 where she reported increasing numbers of TRUMPETER SWANS and CANADA GEESE, Other species reported included RED-TAILED HAWK, SANDHILL CRANE, AMERICAN ROBIN, DARK-EYED JUNCO, PINE SISKIN, COMMON REDPOLL, and PURPLE FINCH.

In Beltrami County, east of Lake Bemidji, Christine Herwig reported AMERICAN ROBIN on March 19.

Thanks to Christine Herwig, Connie Cox, John Loegering, Marshall Howe, Sandy Martens, and Shelley Steva for their reports.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, April 2, 2015.

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Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, March 19, 2015

This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, March 19, 2015 sponsored by the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce. You may also hear this report by calling (218)847-5743 or 1-800-433-1888.

Although we are cooler today than earlier in the week, spring seems to be finally on the way. The skies are full of hopeful geese looking for open water, and the fields are full of horned larks, and migrating Lapland longspurs. The first singing robins are shouting from the crabapple trees, and woodpeckers have started courting. Raptors are visible soaring in the skies again, and the first kestrels have been reported.

In Lake of the Woods County, Gretchen Mehmel this week observed a BLACK-BACKED WOODPECKER near Norris Camp.

Ron Erpelding and Herb Dingmann saw one NORTHERN HAWK OWL , one SNOWY OWL, a NORTHERN SHRIKE, a flock of LAPLAND LONGSPURS, and a large flock of SNOW BUNTINGS in northern Roseau County on March 13. At least 10 ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS were also seen in the area and in several counties to the south as well.

In central and northeastern Marshall County, Ron and Herb found BALD EAGLES, NORTHERN HARRIERS, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS, a NORTHERN SHRIKE, and an AMERICAN KESTREL on March 13.

Here in Pennington County, several observers have seen the two EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVES in Thief River Falls this week. Zeann Linder reported hearing a MERLIN in the city on March 15.

Twelve BALD EAGLES were seen by Anita Vettleson within a mile two miles southeast of Oklee in Red Lake County on March 12. Ron Erpelding and Herb Dingmann found a NORTHERN CARDINAL in Red Lake Falls on March 14.

Joanne Johnson saw two SNOWY OWLS in the Sherack area of Polk County on March 15. Sandy Aubol reported two more- one on CR 20 and one on CR 23. At the Agassiz Valley Impoundment she noted CANADA GEESE, some GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, MALLARDS, and NORTHERN PINTAIL. A GOLDEN EAGLE was seen on a power pole along CR 23 east of Angus. Other species seen in Polk County included NORTHERN HARRIER, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK , AMERICAN TREE SPARROW and HORNED LARK. Bruce Flaig reported a flock of RED-WINGED BLACKBIRDS and about 12 RUSTY BLACKBIRDS in southern Polk County.

Kelly Larson in Clearwater County this week reported a calling NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL, drumming RUFFED GROUSE, and a strong movement of waterfowl to the rice paddies along the Clearwater River . Other species seen included ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS, BALD EAGLES, one AMERICAN KESTREL, a NORTHERN HARRIER, a SHORT-EARED OWL and an EASTERN BLUEBIRD. Connie Cox at Itasca State Park reported TRUMPETER SWANS and CANADA GEESE gathering on whatever open water they could find.

This week in Hubbard County, Marshall Howe reported HOOEDED MERGANSER, GRAY JAY, RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD, and PINE SISKINS at the Lake Alice Bog. Near Dorset he saw a few COMMON REDPOLLS, a HOARY REDPOLL, a few DARK-EYED JUNCOS, and a NORTHERN CARDINAL. Near Park Rapids he saw an AMERICAN KESTREL.

From Douglas County, Benjamin Eckhoff reported large flocks of geese, and a spreading out of other waterfowl as lakes and rivers begin to thaw. Species reported included CANADA GEESE, TRUMPETER SWANS, COMMON MERGANSER, COMMON GOLDENEYE, many BALD EAGLES, and COMMON REDPOLLS.

Thanks to Anita Vettleson, Benjamin Eckhoff, Bruce Flaig, Connie Cox, Gretchen Mehmel, Joanne Johnson, Kelly Larson, Marshall Howe, Sandy Aubol, Zeann Linder, Ron Erpelding and Herb Dingmann for their reports.

Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at ajjoppru@mncable.net OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber’s toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, March 26, 2015.

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