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Old Saturday 18th October 2008, 22:19   #1
notesfromtheroad
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Twin Cities Birding in November

Hi all,

I am wondering about birding in the Minneapolis area in November? I will be working so dont have time to drive to Duluth, etc, but want to know about good sites for winter in Minneapolis or St. Paul or within an hour's drive.

Is it possible to see Iceland gulls, black-backed gulls, Carolina wrens, long-eared owls, etc? Any information would be helpful. Thank you!

What about ducks - any possibility of American black ducks this time of year?

Thanks!

Erik
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Old Monday 20th October 2008, 22:02   #2
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My favorite is Crosby Farm Regional Park in St. Paul, at the confluence of the Minnesota and Mississippi. You may have read my comments in other threads. :) It's centrally located and very sheltered from the weather, and the woodpeckers especially seem to like the river valley. Woodpeckers and other common things hang around through the winter. I'm not really quite sure what will be around in November, but I'll be visiting this November again as well. Gulls and ducks I'm not sure about, but check into the "Black Dog" location on the Minnesota River. Also, just South of La Crescent (far away) on the Mississippi River is the big November tundra swan congregation which may be a better place to look for those water birds. Check the minnesota bird site moumn.org and the web archive for the mnbird mailing list, which has archived messages from previous years.
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Old Wednesday 29th October 2008, 23:21   #3
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According to Eckert's “A Birders Guide to Minnesota” (which is an excellent book and a great read), Black Duck is uncommon in Southeastern MN in winter: so good luck searching the ducks!
Also from this book:
Iceland Gull is difficult (barely regular), black-backed gulls are rare but regular. The west side of Lake Calhoun in the evening is a possibility; landfills in Inver Grove Heights (117 Street E west of Hway 52/55) and Burnsville (Washburn Ave) may be worth checking too.
Long-eared Owl can be searched in conifers along CR 18 between CR 101 and Hway 169 or at Acacia Park Cemetery.
Carolina Wren is virtually impossible.
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Old Sunday 2nd November 2008, 20:27   #4
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Thank you both for the wonderful replies. I'll post back with what I find!
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Old Saturday 22nd November 2008, 13:14   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notesfromtheroad View Post
What about ducks - any possibility of American black ducks this time of year?
At Lake Vadnais yesterday the waterfowl was pretty typical. Canada geese and trumpeter swans. Large rafts of hooded merganser, mallard and ring-necked duck. A few coots and goldeneyes here and there. Somebody had seen long-tailed duck recently, but I didn't spot any yesterday in my survey pics of the flotillas.
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