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More Winter Rarities

Although I haven't written since the 10th, it wasn't because of lack of unusual sightings. Unfortunately, finishing last tally results and sending the CBC numbers to Audubon has taken large amounts of my energy and time, and I have finally freed myself from that monumental task and am moving forward and touching base with you guys to give you some bird news from the last ten days.


Multiple birders have taken the time to drive out to Sherman Township and see the Bohemian Waxwings which were spotted back on January 6. I decided to brave the weather and expose myself to some of the back country roads and see the waxwings for myself. I was rewarded with several hundred Cedar Waxwings and saw up to 6 Bohemian Waxwings.


4 Bohemian Waxwings (Top left & bottom right). Photo by: David Dister



6 Bohemian Waxwings. (Top left & bottom right). Photo by: David Dister


While patrolling the countryside and courageously traveling down dangerous dirt roads that are made to grab vehicles and suck their tires into ruts, I was rewarded by seeing and photographing a dark phase Rough-legged Hawk on Tuttle Rd. between Free Soil and Freeman roads.


Rough-legged Hawk (dark phase) Photo by: David Dister


A local birder struck a gold mine at the PM Marsh on January 14th in the shape and form that looked remarkably like a Peregrine Falcon. When I and other birders looked at the pictures taken, a conclusion was made that the gold mine WAS a Peregrine Falcon and I rushed out to hopefully see the rare falcon. However, I was unable to find it and my only consolation prize was an immature Bald Eagle that offered flight shots and a sighting earlier that day of a Red-shouldered Hawk near the Meijer parking lot in Ludington.

Peregrine Falcon


Immature Bald Eagle - Photo by: David Dister


Red-shouldered Hawk - Photo by: David Dister


Despite the disappointment of no Peregrine Falcon in my camera viewfinder that day, I was able to find a Great Black-backed Gull at the Stearns Park Beach on January 17th, and a Peregrine Falcon on Darr Rd. just north of Town Line Rd. in Free Soil Township!



Great Black-backed Gull - Photo by: David Dister


Peregrine Falcon - Photo by: David Dister


It appeared as if the bird was eating recently caught prey on the ground, but as I was looking at my pictures, it flew away and I have no idea where it went. With all of these winter birds trickling through Mason County in the last few months, a Northern Hawk Owl would be a great addition to the 2023 year list...



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