This is the Northwest Minnesota Birding Report for Thursday, December 12, 2013 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.
There is no doubt that winter is now here as the area has been dealing with subzero temperatures for the last week. Reports of bird sightings have increased with the most notable increases being with snowy owls throughout the area.
Larry Wilebski in Kittson County reported a SNOWY OWL along CR 8 a mile west of US 59 sometime last week. An adult SNOWY OWL was seen by Gary Tischer on December 5 along US 59 and 300th St in Marshall County, about five miles south of Newfolden. Doug Johnson reported a SNOWY OWL in Beltrami County near the Horace May School along US 71 south of Bemidji on December 7. Marshall Howe had a secondhand report of another just west of Chamberlain in southeast Hubbard County on December 11. An immature SNOWY OWL was seen at Hamden Slough on December 12. It was seen by Steve Midthune on the second power pole north of the intersection of CR 13 and 280th St in Becker County.
Doug Johnson reported a TOWNSEND’S SOLITAIRE in the Nary area along the Paul Bunyan Recreational Trail in Hubbard County on December 7. Marshall Howe reported SNOW BUNTINGS near Hubbard , a NORTHERN SHRIKE and SHARP-SHINNED HAWK in Dorset on December 7. He saw 8 CEDAR WAXWINGS in Park Rapids on December 11, and reported BLACK-BILLED MAGPIES near Nevis.
On December 6, Steve Midthune reported a mixed flock of SNOW BUNTINGS and LAPLAND LONGSPURS and three ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS at Hamden Slough in Becker County.
Shelley Steva observed 20 SNOW BUNTINGS, a BALD EAGLE, and 25 CANADA GEESE near Moorhead in Clay County on December 10.
Kristy May in Waubun, in Mahnomen County on December 12, reported RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH, MOURNING DOVE, and AMERICAN ROBIN at her feeder, and many COMMON RAVENS along US 59 between Waubun and Mahnomen.
Sandy Aubol in East Grand Forks , Polk County, reported a female COOPER’S HAWK and a NORTHERN SHRIKE on December 6. Shelley Steva saw LAPLAND LONGSPURS south of Eldred on December 10.
Gary Tischer observed two AMERICAN ROBINS in Thief River Falls in Pennington County on December 7.
Gary also saw 18 SHARP-TAILED GROUSE near the southeast corner of Agassiz NWR in Marshall County on December 12.
Connie Cox reported a GREAT GRAY OWL at Itasca SP by the entrance to the U of M field station along the main park drive on December 6. This is in Clearwater County.
David Harrington reported a VARIED THRUSH near Three Island Lake in Turtle River in Beltrami County on December 6.
In Kittson County, Larry Wilebski saw a RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER one day last week.