Recent Sightings are nature reports from the greater Muskegon (Michigan) area. But the BIRD AND SNAKE above were not in Muskegon. This photo was taken April 16 while some of us club members were birding around southeast Texas. In a marsh at the Sabine NWR in western Louisiana, an American Bittern had difficulty with a snake it its beak. For a while it was unclear who would prevail, but eventually the bird had the snake for lunch. View our club's home page.
At the bottom of this page find Zachary DeBruine's latest BirdTrax gadget listing all eBird sightings of the last two weeks within 15 miles of downtown Muskegon.
To see all the details in some of the pictures, right-click them. From the mini-list choose "Open link in new window". In that window click the picture for actual size, often too big to fit your monitor. Scroll around to appreciate all the details. Then click again to see the entire picture.
Marc Miedema planned to bird all day. I accompanied him from 6:15 until 11:40 from Lane's Landing (34 species) to the State Game Area headquarters (38 species).
Highlights at Lane's included an American Bittern(not the one above; see sidebar) "thunder-pumping" as it peeked over the grass tops, Virginia Rail, Sora, Pied-billed Grebe, American Coot, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and a pair of Great Horned Owls whooting at each other at 8:45 a.m.! and several Blue-winged Teal.
At SGA we heard what sounded like a Common Loon calling from the "snipe field" west of the headquarters. A Wilson's Snipe winnowed over the south end of that field. We also saw Brown Thrasher, Cedar Waxwing, Hermit Thrush, and at least three Red-tailed Hawks.
Marc continued on to the Wastewater while I went home and foundTerra Berry's email including several photos from yesterday at the Wastewater including this Horned Grebe and American Avocet:
Finally, at 3:15Feller DeWitt phoned to report a Marbled Godwit in the same aeration lagoon that the American Avocets had been in yesterday. He said the avocets were gone. I don't know if he and Marc saw each other out there.
I was at Wastewater today and was able to find the American Avocets that Feller saw yesterday. There were eight of them around noon on Wednesday in the western most drawn down aeration cell. This was a life bird for me. Pretty exciting, and what a beautiful bird.
Hi Ric, Mary Poort and I saw these two Egyptian Geese in the grassy cells at Wastewater on Saturday. As I understand, they are considered escapees and not countable. However, still cool to see! Do you know if anyone has seen these around the area before? Feel free to post this on the nature club's website if you think it's of interest. Regards, Marc Miedema
Occasionally domestic geese show up on the lagoons at the Wastewater. Several years ago there was one that brought many comments from people seeing it for the first time. Some of the domestic geese are shown here:
I walked around the Muskegon Lake Nature Preserve this chilly morning hoping for a new year bird but finding only the usual suspects. Of the 22 species recorded, a Brown Creeper was probably "best". There were still several American Tree Sparrows on the property. - Ric
American Woodcock returned last Thursday or Friday evening to the field by the blueberry patch near my house. There were two or three peenting and flying tonight when Mike Boston came over. Conditions were not good for photography, but Mike was able to get this shot before dark. - Ric
I birded Ottawa County's Hemlock Crossing Park from 9:00-10:00 this morning, then spent the next hour in the Nature Education Center watching Curtis Dykstra run his final Coffee with the Birds program of the season.
I recorded 20 bird species including Pileated Woodpecker, Pine Siskin and my first-for-this-year Red-winged Blackbird. Unfortunately yesterday's Rusty Blackbird did not make an appearance today. This Gray Squirrel has figured how to eat from the park's "squirrel-proof" feeder.
Two Weeks of Sightings Within 15 Miles of Muskegon
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