|Male American Kestrel|
We suspect that the raptor flight is a tad behind schedule due to the lack of cold weather, although the last few days suggest birds are on their way in bigger numbers. In addition, upcoming weather at the end of this week should help move things along, perhaps in a big way.
Continuing the trend from August, morning songbird flights have been very good in the first week of September. In fact, three of the days in the last seven have produced counts of over 1000 individual warblers (including back-to-back large flights on 6 and 7 September)! Warbler species composition is starting to shift from being dominated by Nashville Warblers to American Redstarts. A large Cedar Waxwing flight has not materialized, which leaves us to wonder if it is yet to come. Time will tell.
|Nashville Warblers. Note the short tail, gray hood, yellow belly, and pale eye ring.|
One or two more flights of neotropical migrants seem likely, but each day moves us closer to non-raptor flights that consist of migrants with wintering destinations much closer to Minnesota. In addition to Blue Jays, species just starting to move this week included Pine Siskins, Red-breasted Nuthatches, Palm and Yellow-rumped Warblers.
Below are a few pictorial highlights from this week!
|Something you don't see every day: Swainson's Thrush overhead! Note the bold wing stripe, a feature shared by many thrushes (and all members of the genus Catharus), and buffy spectacles.|
|An American Crow with white in the wings has been seen flying over the ridge a number of times recently "commuting" to and from Duluth. Not to be confused with...|
|...Pileated Woodpecker (male)!|