Michigan birding - and other things

Birding was very quiet over the past couple of days. Morning sorties provided the most birds but we dipped on several of the northern specialities. Whilst searching for Black-backed Woodpecker Bernie leaped from a couple of yards behind me to just in front of me with the exclamation "Jees Louise". I immediately knew she'd seen something that she didn't like - as you can see from the photo, an Eastern Garter Snake had just caught a frog - double whammey!!

At the Obs, there were several birds coming into the feeders including a couple of malingering White-crowned Sparrows, Purple Finches, etc but the Evening Grosbeaks failed to put in an appearance :-(
On the point itself, there were few birds. Ring-billed and American Herring Gulls loafed around and the first day there were three Semi-palmated Plovers, a Semi-palmated Sandpiper and three Sanderling. The following day, two Buff-breasted Sandpipers were a great surprise.
On the final evening, we took a trip down a very quiet track and came accross a small flock of warblers - Nashville, Myrtle, Magnolia, Palm, American Redstart and Golden-crowned Kinglet and then I headed back for another ringing session in which another Saw-Whet was caught.
On the final morning, at the fourth attempt, I found a Piping Plover - what a smashing bird and a great rarity.


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