Tonight as the northwest lies under a blanket of snow, we feel the first bite of the winter winds. The bad weather was welcome as many fires were burning over the dry land, and threatening, even consuming some homes. Now we are in the midst of the first winter storm, after temperatures of 80 degrees on Monday. It's never dull in the Midwest. With the changing temperatures, large numbers of AMERICAN ROBINS and DARK-EYED JUNCOS appeared on their way south.
Brad and Dee Ehlers in Fergus Falls, Otter Tail County, reported that on October 1, 50 DARK-EYED JUNCOS, a WHITE-THOATED SPARROW, and a NORTHERN CARDINAL pair with 3 of this season's young were in their yard.
From Hubbard County, Marshall Howe reported two AMERICAN WOODCOCKS on September 30. By October 4, he was seeing CEDAR WAXWINGS, WHITE-THROATED SPARROWS, HARRIS'S SPARROWS, WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW, FOX SPARROW, DARK-EYED JUNCOS, and PURPLE FINCHES among others.
Kristy May in Waubun in Norman County reported 6 TURKEY VULTURES and 3 SHARP-SHINNED HAWKS on October 3. DARK-EYED JUNCOS were common.
Sandy Aubol in Polk County observed AMERICAN PIPITS at the East Grand Forks wastewater treatment ponds on September 30. A RED-TAILED HAWK and several EASTERN BLUEBIRDS were also seen in the county.
Shelley Steva and I found a BELTED KINGFISHER in Red Lake County on September 30.
Here in Pennington County, there are hoards of DARK-EYED JUNCOS since the weekend. On September 29 , I saw several GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLETS in our yard near Thief River Falls. On September 30, we saw a SHARP-TAILED GROUSE in the county.
Shelley Steva and I saw a SHARP-SHINNED HAWK, GREEN HERON, and YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER in northeastern Clearwater County on September 30. An AMERICAN PIPIT was seen along CR 223.
Pat DeWenter in Bemidji, Beltrami County, reported 3 PILEATED WOODPECKES, 13 FOX SPARROWS, 15 WHITE-THROATED SPARROWS, and 3 DARK-EYED JUNCOS on October 4.
Thanks to Brad and Dee Ehlers, Kristy May, Marshall Howe, Sandy Aubol, and Pat DeWenter for their reports.
Please report bird sightings to Jeanie Joppru by email, no later than Thursday each week, at firstname.lastname@example.org OR call the Detroit Lakes Chamber's toll free number: 1-800-542-3992. Detroit Lakes area birders please call 847-9202. Please include the county where the sighting took place. The next scheduled update of this report is Thursday, October 11, 2012.