This afternoon at Serpent Mounds, on the north side of Rice Lake, we had several thousand Lesser Scaup and a few hundred Greater Scaup (Approximately 80-90% Lesser). We also had 300-400 American Wigeon although there may have been more (There were ducks as far as the eye could see and it really makes one wonder how many tens of thousands there could be on the lake right now). There were 1000+ Ring-necked Ducks and ~200 Common goldeneye. There were smaller numbers of Redhead (~50-100), Common Mergansers (100-200), Bufflehead (~100) and Canvasback (~50). Surprisingly, there was probably less than 20 Mallards and similar numbers of Black Ducks. We were able to find less than 10 Pintail and 2 Northern Shoveller drakes and 1 hen in the mix. There were 3 Coots close to the beach at the park. Also in the park was an early Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and many creepers along with a several Golden-crowned Kinglets. There were also some cormorants hanging out by their nests near the park’s south beach. Just outside of the park (approximately 0.5km north) we had a few Tree Swallows and a late Northern Shrike. On the first road to the right after leaving the park there was a very vocal Red-bellied Woodpecker. Also of interest was a partial leucistic Red-tailed Hawk on Duncan rd. (2 roads west of Serpent Mounds road) and 12 Pintail, a black duck/mallard hybrid drake, and a Green-winged Teal in a flooded field on Drummond Line. There were three Osprey at a nest near Baillieborough and two Kestrels on County Road 2 north of Baillieborough. Serpent Mounds Park is south of Keene on Serpent Mounds Road which intersects County Road 2. The park is currently “CLOSED” so I am not really sure if you are supposed to go in or not (My disclaimer). When it is open it costs $8.00/car.

Location: Rice Lake area
Observer: Ben Walters

Categories: Sightings

Drew Monkman

I am a retired teacher, naturalist and writer with a love for all aspects of the natural world, especially as they relate to seasonal change.