Mississippi River on Sunday

Retraced some of the route that the club took several weeks ago when I couldn’t go. Found all 3 species of swans, lots of White-fronted Geese, and, of course, thousands of ducks and geese. A surprise was the 1st winter Glaucous Gull at Lock and Dam 13. Lots of White Pelicans there, mostly on the Iowa side of the river. Ended at Lock and Dam 14, where the Harlequin Ducks were on the Iowa side. Thanks to Ann Straight for her excellent directions.

Barbara saw a Purple Finch at our feeder on Friday and it was calling Saturday from the woods.

Tree Swallows

Barbara and I had a couple of Tree Swallows over our driveway this afternoon. I saw 22 Hooded Mergansers and a few Common Mergansers at Rock Cut. Also today at Rock Cut: a Pied-billed Grebe, Canvasbacks and both scaup species, Buffleheads, Redheads and Black Ducks. Ruddy Ducks on the Rock River by Auburn St. Bridge. Yesterday 8 Tundra Swans on the Rock River between Byron and Oregon, 14 White-fronted Geese at Rock Falls and lots of Ducks up and down the river.

Sandhill Cranes and waterfowl

Barbara had a single Sandhill Crane fly over the house in NW Rockford on Wednesday, 2/28. I also saw 7 that day at the I-90 interchange with US 20 at Marengo.

Ducks are beginning to show up on the Rock River in Rockford. On March 2, there were 3 Ring-necked Ducks at the 15th Avenue Bridge. Last Sunday, there were 29 Common Mergansers in the Rock River between Meridian Road and Oregon, IL.

Black-headed Gull in Chicago

An adult Black-headed Gull in basic plumage was discovered in Chicago on Friday, February 23 and was relocated on Wednesday, 2/28. It is still present. The bird is at Montrose Harbor, which can be reached by exiting the Kennedy Expressway at Irving Park Road. Take Irving Park to Lake Shore Drive, go N on Lake Shore Drive, and exit at Montrose east to the park. The bird has been seen in the harbor. Bring old bread to chum. It seems to appear quickly when bread is being tossed around.

Varied Thrush in Rochelle, IL

A Varied Thrush is being seen at the LawnRidge Cemetary in Rochelle. It was first discovered on Sunday, February 4 by a nearby homeowner, who reported it on the Great Back yard bird count. I was seen both 2/24 and 2/25. The cemetary is located on 8th Avenue, about 1/2 block west of Woolf St. This area is west of IL 251 in the northwest section of Rochelle. The bird has also been seen from the cul-de-sac at the end of 15th Street on the north side of the cemetary at bird feeders behind the last house on the west side of the street.

Dan Williams