Spring might be a relative term just yet, but the Song Sparrows and Killdeer were endorsing it!
I led the first spring BBC outing this morning scheduled for the New Buffalo area. The first pic is pretty emblematic of the start.
Coho are running and weekend found A LOT of fishermen in the harbor. Most of the ducks had moved farther out into the lake. About 10 WW Scoters started the morning on the other side of the breakwall, but 3 were moving around and giving reasonable looks as the group arrived.
After a bit we had a comparison look at a young male Black Scoter as well.
I was hopeful that we'd find more birds at the overlooks to the north, but Union Pier was pretty empty (aside from more boats) and the mergansers were even farther out so we headed to Three Oaks. I managed to forget to take any pics of the redhead, lesser scaup, goldeneye, bufflehead, or ring-necked ducks. While the birds weren't super close we enjoyed good scope views of the birds on the middle pond with the sun angling from the side. The group talked a bit about Fish Crows as we looked at the ducks, and as we left at least one Fish Crow flew through, along with its louder American cousins.
Finally we did a loop through the Three Oaks Cemetery. We didn't manage to find any Saw-whets, but a group of Common Redpolls were a lifer for several participants!
It was fun to kick off the spring season with some vestiges of winter.
Thanks to our participants (especially a couple of up-and-coming young birders!) and to Derek and Lamanda for putting this together.