Detroit RBA 3/16/05
Karl.Overman at usdoj.gov
Karl.Overman at usdoj.gov
Wed Mar 16 18:56:16 EST 2005
Great Gray Owl
Wednesday, March 16, 2005 at 6:30 P.M.
This is the rare bird alert sponsored by the Detroit Audubon Society. The biggest news this week -no offense Allen-is not a bird but a birder, Neil Gilbert. Neil, the 12 year-old wunderkind from Beverly Hills, Michigan, was named this year's young birder of the year in the ABA/Leica competition. For those of us who know Neil-and for the rest of you who will eventually know him-they could not have selected a better candidate.
As for birds, Allen Chartier found a Ross's Goose on Belle Isle on the Detroit River in Wayne County on March 15th. A number of other birders saw the bird around the golf course area until Adam Byrne saw it fly off at 4:30 p.m. On March 16th Scott Jennex saw it in the Detroit River early in the morning. I tried for it at noon time and came up empty.
The long running Long-eared Owl show at Lake Erie Metro Park, Wayne County was still going strong as of last weekend when up to 11 were seen on the Nature Trail across from the Visitor Center. The weather has been depressing migration and the spirit of birders so far in March. Scott Jennex still managed to find a couple notable birds last weekend-a Brown Thrasher at Westcroft Gardens on Grosse Ile, Wayne County on March 12th and 19 White-winged Scoters at the mouth of the St. Clair River in Port Huron on March 13th. On the left side of the state that might not be much of total to talk about but here on the east side, that is an unusually large concentration.
It is prime goose migration time and a few Cackling Geese are being turned up wherever there are are concentrations of geese it seems-Allegan, Ford Lake in Washtenaw County etc. A few White-fronted Geese also are being found-Jim Granlund had one in Van Buren County on Maple Lake in downtown Paw Paw-Charlie Maxwell's home town for aged baseball fans like me-- on March 13th and several were seen by multiple observers, including Kevin Thomas and Tim Smart, in Ionia County along the Grand River off of David Highway.
In Oakland County, the Harris's Sparrow remains as of today, March 16th, at the home of Mike Wells at 6481 Springfield Lane. The bird feeds on seed placed between 2 large evergreens in his backyard. Please call first at 248.625.3088. The most direct route from Detroit is to take I-75 to Dixie Highway exit west of Clarkston and go south to the first road going west south of I-75 which is Big Lake Road. Follow Big Lake Road through several turns until Springfield Lane appears on the north side of the road .2 of a mile before the road hits Andersonville Road. His house is the second house on the right.
Brian Allen saw the Varied Thrush in Manistee on March 14th at the home of Chuck and Linda Scribner. If you would like to see the bird call them at 231.723.6193
Northern owls still make news. Skye Haas had a Great Gray Owl in the northern lower peninsula right on the expressway-I-75 just south of Indian River in Cheboyan County on March 14th
He also had a couple Great Gray Owls south of the Soo on the same date and the Hawk Owl at 20 Mile Road and Riverside as well.
The Townsend's Solitaire present for at least two weeks, was seen by Neil Gilbert on March 12th at Hungry Hollow in Ontario south of Pinery Provincial Park on Fossil Road a half kilometer west of Sylvan Road. This is on the Lambton Co./Middlesex County line. Look around the red gate. The closest Snowy Owl to the Detroit area is one in Essex County, Ontario. Paul Pratt saw it on March 13th on Essex County Road 42 between County Road 35 (Comber Road) and Townline Road. Paul also reports that Woodcock were back at Ojibway Park where he works on March 10th. Many birders looked on vain for the white Gyrfalcon in the Hillman Marsh area north of Point Pelee on March 13th but came up empty. A consolation prize were two Long-eared Owls in a Red Cedar right on the road along the north side of Hillman Marsh on both March 12th and 13th.
Detroit Audubon will have its "Smith Chicken" trip to central Illinois April 7-10 to look for Smith's Longspurs and Prairie Chicken, lead by Karl Overman. If you are interested contact the Detroit Audubon office, Tuesday-Thursday at 248.545.2929.
To report rare birds call Karl Overman at 248.473.0484.
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