Birder's Guide

MAR 2015

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

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Page 25 of 67

Michigan's Tawas Point 24 Birder's Guide to Travel | March 2015 migrants, there will often be Peregrine Falcons. A sudden dispersal of every shore- bird on a mudfat is the typical fanfare of a Peregrine's (or a Bald Eagle's) arrival. Spring and fall are both good times to look for falcons. Merlin is regular throughout the year, and often one is engaged in aerial ha- rassment of a bird much larger than itself. Migrating passerines are just as abundant in the fall, if a little less showy. Days with double-digit war- blers are easy to come by in September. The western subspecies of Palm Warbler, which tends to favor shorelines on fall pas- sage, is often absurdly abundant. Fall also brings waterfowl. Diving ducks are plentiful in the bay, although it's impor- tant to note that duck hunting is allowed here. It's easy to be startled by a shotgun blast or embarrassed by excitedly scop- ing a group of decoys. Long-tailed Duck, Buffehead, and Common Goldeneye are regular, along with appearances by all the mergansers. My favorite fall experience at Tawas Point was the exodus of a line of Double-crested Cormorants, perhaps the most-maligned bird species of the Great Lakes. I sat on a driftwood log and counted 187 cormorants Maps © Virginia Maynard Tawas Point is a multi-purpose state park, but interpretive signage throughout the park points to a strong focus on birding. Photo © David-Lorne Photographic/DLP Continued on page 26

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