Birding Forum
Archived Birding Posts from the Mississippi River Home Page at GREATRIVER.COM

MISSISSIPPI RIVER HOME  |  WATERWAY CRUISE REPORTS  |  River Books, Note Cards and Gifts  |  Feature Articles FISHING|
Hand-painted HISTORIC MAPS  |  River Classifieds  |  Contact Us  Press Releases | Photo Gallery | Links | BIRDING





Birding Forum


Click Here! here to post your bird sightings, questions and comments for our other readers.

25 May

I spotted a flock of 12 whooping cranes just North East of Waco, Texas at 5:30pm today.  It appeared that they were circling in order to land for the evening. Just thought you might be interested. Take Care.
Andy, Waco, Texas

I was looking for birding information for Louisiana. --Deanna Ford, dford"at"MONROE.K12.LA.US

From: Kristine, Drurydrury"at"

Hi, I am trying to do some research, but nothing involved, on the downy woodpecker. If anyone has any neat or interesting observations of these birds, could you please email me and tell me about them. I am very interested in what you have to say. Thank you very much!!





ASM Douglas Shaw, MetalVoice"at"
Monroe, VA

As an avid canoer and wildlife-nut, I like what you're doing with your was very interesting to read. My wife and I paddle around local lakes and rivers, and we enjoy just identifying every bird & animal we see... from a Peregrin on Mill Creek Lake to Golden Eagles on the Tye River, from Wood-ducks on Thrasher Lake to Blue Herons on the upper-end of the James River. Keep up the good work!

From: Jeff Dankert, Renohawk"at"
I hiked up through Hixon Forest to a beautiful goat prairie the evening of 4/28/97, overlooking the river and, unfortunately, the city of La Crosse! But after my arduous hike I saw a bird fly to the ground and back up to a beautiful white birch. It was a male bluebird. Soon the female appeared, and she seemed less intent on finding food. I watched the two for about 10 minutes with my binoculars at close range, and the blue of this male was spectacular with the pale light of the setting sun on it. This was obviously a mated pair, and finally the male flew to the ground for an insect, and then back to the female, presenting her with a courtship meal!

 Since the Mississippi River has exceeded flood stage in our area, over 200 pelicans have taken up residence in the north lake on the west side the the "Island Town" of Sabula, IA. The level of the lake is controlled during flooding so I imagine it is easier for the birds to find food there. There is also a Great Blue Heron rookery north of Sabula off the causeway leading to the bridge to Savanna, IL. --Char, cadeahler"at"

Interesting, I have been Photographing the White Pelicans as they migrate through Clarence Cannon Wildlife Refuge on the Mississippi River. This site is just South of Clarksville, Missouri. This is my first encounter with the pelicans in the six years I have been doing outdoor photography. Today, April 5, 1997, I believe I got some good slides of the last remaining birds before they left for more Northern climes. The pelicans were soaring into a forty mph wind against a clear blue sky. Last week I estimated about 400 pelicans on the refuge, today maybe only a hundred. Keep up the good work.
Al  Overland, Mo. ABlount982"at"

, Ontario, Canada
I was searching for information on the Tundra Swans. I live in S.W. Ontario, approx.50 miles east of Detroit, and am one of the fortunate ones to experience seeing the Tundra Swan migrating to their northern home in the Arctic. Each year I await their flight. It's truely, one of my favourite things in life. They stop to feed in our corn fields in this part of the country. I would welcome them to my backyard if I know they'd be interested in stopping. It's difficult to believe these gorgeous, large birds come such a distance. They are such a large bird. Thanks for the information. Happy Tundra watching for their return in the Fall .

I was at Goose Island (La Crosse, WI, Highway 35 South) this afternoon and observed a great gray owl perched on a sign by the side of the road into the park in an open area just before the flagpole and before the first shelter. I know a great gray was seen in Goose Island last year and it can't be mistaken for anything else. It was very exciting to see one up close. Several other people had pulled up behind me to watch it as well.
Melissa,  LaCrosse WI


Did some birding in Houston County yesterday with Fred Lesher and some visitors from the Twin Cities. We found Tufted Titmouse, Purple Finch, a coyote, Wild Turkeys, Rough-legged Hawks, Bald Eagles and paired Red-tailed Hawks.
These people from the TCs were impressed with the area and the birds. The value of ecotourism here is strong and viable!

Tue, 11 Feb  13:26:10 -0800
From: Bill Butler ( poolwb"at" )
Where can I get more info about the Siberian Accentor? We have one close by. Bill Butler, Sun Valley ID.

Subject: Hi - could you help us by posting the following note appropriately? Also, our URL address has changed - see the bottom of the page. Thanks! Date: Fri, 03 Jan  From: Peter Kingsmill (redpel"at" Organization: The Redberry Pelican Project

Happy New Year! It may seem early for this, but we want YOUR HELP... We need information on the migration activities of American White Pelicans, as they start to move around and head north to their nesting grounds on the Great Plains. Please, if you see white pelicans this winter and spring, take the time to email us at pelican"at" and let us know: how many (about), where, and when. We will, in return, put you on our Pelican Briefs email newsletter list, where this information will be compiled. THESE FISH-EATING BIRDS ARE IMPORTANT: LIKE SO MANY FISH-EATING CRITTERS, THEY ARE INCREASINGLY UNDER ATTACK AS SCAPEGOATS FOR FISHERIES MISMANAGEMENT AND COMMERCIAL OVERFISHING. THANKS FOR YOUR HELP!!
Cheers! -- Peter Kingsmill, The Redberry Pelican Project
Saskatchewan, Canada.
email redpel"at"
Visit our home page at:

Subject: Eagles at Red Wing,MN Date: Thu, 19 Dec From: Jerome Johnson (koja"at"

Pat, there are many, many Eagles flying, and sitting in the trees around the open water at Colvill Park. The lone Pelican is still hanging in there. It must like the cold weather, or maybe the Shad. Have a good day--------------Jerry

From: CHIZBCWC"at"
Hi, I stumbled across this site while searching for info on eagle-watching on the river in the Alton area. I'm visiting the area (from North Carolina) through Dec. 26, and am sure hoping I'm not too early to see some eagles. I'm hoping you can offer some tips on places to go -- I haven't found a good authority yet, but some have suggested driving the Great River Road, or taking the Brussels Ferry, or heading up to Clarksville. Any help you can offer is greatly appreciated! Thanks. --Sherry
(temporarily at chizbcwc"at"

Sherry, you are getting all the right information about eagle watching! Browse through our birding forum--I think there is someone from Alton who reports on Eagles. No word yet this year, but you can see what he said last winter--and maybe even email him.

Look for the eagles over or near OPEN WATER, especially just below a dam. Good luck! -- Pat

Fri, 13 Dec From: Jerome Johnson
Hey Pat; One lone Pelican swimming with the ducks at Colvill Park in Red Wing. Glidesaround on the water with its wings spread some of the time. It has been here two days, at least. That's all, Have a good day-------- Jerry

Thanks Jerry. Just had another report of a lone Tundra Swan alongside a rural road in Stoddard, WI, (near the riverfront park).

Date: Tue, 03 Dec
From: Jerome Johnson

This morning I checked out Colvill Park in Red Wing, Minnesota. A lot of open water right there, and many different spieces of ducks, and a lot of fish in the area I assume. There were also between 15-25 flying and sitting in the trees, I saw juvenil eagles picking some some small fish out of the water. I drove to Lake City, there is a pair of Tundra Swans that have been resting near highway 61, within five feet of the roadway. People have been leaving grain for them, I know they have been there for a few days. I walked right up to them, they show no fear of people. Oh yes, they are banded. I checked out the Weaver bottoms for swans, nothing there, mostly frozen over.

I stopped at the Eagle view in Wabasha, nothing there. Lots of ice flowing in the river from Reads Landing down past Wabasha. There were a few Eagles between Reads Landing and Camp LaCupoles. Last week there were Eagles near the Methodists Camp in Old Frontenac, MN. Nothing today, No open water.

There have been many wild Turkeys on the west side of highway 58 as you are entering or leaving Red Wing, between the communications towe rnear the jct of Goodhue County 5 and highway 58 and Pioneer Road. That's all------Have a good day--- Jerry Johnson

Wow, thanks, Jerry!


Note from a viewer: Lynn Cote'

I "hot-linked" to the Cranes Page, it looks WONDERFUL.

My parents found a sandhill crane (down in the boonies of SW Texas) that had been hit by a car. They corraled it; Dad had to tie its beak shut. They took it to the vet. One of its wings was broken. The vet couldn't save it, because the "air-sac" had been ruptured on one side. My parents hated that; however, it didn't suffer as long at the vet's as it would have by the side of the road! They said it was beautiful - and quite feisty.

Just an interesting little tidbit; we didn't know until then that they didn't have lungs! Thanks, again!

11-16, Mrs. Hamilton wrote,
I live in northeast Missouri and a white pelican landed on our 2 acre pond yesterday. it is alone and makes no attempt to leave. Isn't it way out of its territory?

Mrs. Hamilton, I'm not sure what the scoop is--maybe it's just a straggler on the migration route? Or if you've had the weather we've been having up here, he could have been blown off course. We've had a single gull in Wisconsin recently that is normally only found on the coasts! They suspect violent weather may be the cause.
I'll post your question in the forum. Thanks for writing.

I mistakenly said I lived in NE Mo. I live in St. Joseph which is northwest Mo. It has been terribly windy so he could have been off course. About a month ago we had a single double crested cormorant that stayed around about 2 weeks.