Grebes (or not), Finches and Mega Rare Ducks!

Hey guys,
This morning I ventured to the south shore of Chicago to look for an Eared Grebe that a friend had yesterday at Rainbow Beach. When we got to the south beach we ran into some friends who didn't have luck with it, but were going to move to the north beach to look. We scanned the channel, the rocks and the lake for maybe 20 minutes at the south beach before we headed to the north beach. As my brother and I got to the point of the dunes, we asked some friends if they'd had any luck with the Eared Grebe. They said no. Then a minute later they said "Oh, right before you walked up we had a Western Grebe." I just about died, came back to life to look at their pictures and then died again. For the next 45 minutes, we sat and scanned and scanned and scanned with no luck. Then we decided to have a look around the breakwall from the north point at Park 566 with Isoo. Not even 5 minutes later we get a text saying that another friend just had the Western Grebe! We raced over and I bet you can guess how the story went from there. As you correctly assumed, we sat around for another 45 minutes scanning and scanning and scanning. I did pull a flyby female Black Scoter though which was nice, and we had a Common Loon that gave us a scare for a Red-throated, then a Pacific. Then we decided to head north which was a mistake , because at about 9:00 p.m. today I saw a Facebook post from someone who had the bird 7 mines away from rainbow Beach at Whiting Lakefront Park in Indiana. The bird headed, north, then south, then north, then all the way south again. At the South Shore Cultural Center, we got word that a White-winged Crossbill was being seen at a feeder up north of Chicago. The crossbill had been seen for 3 days at the same private feeder and we just had to go for it after a disappointing morning on the south side. An hour later we were sitting in the backyard of the home waiting for the crossbill to fly in. After about 30 or 40 minutes, I hear a piercing call an we all simultaneously look up and we see the White-winged Crossbill sitting in the tree right above us! Lifer, and my 280th species seen in Cook County this year! It hung around for just under 10 minutes at the feeder, and we got some awesome pics of it with a squirrel doing birdfeeder gymnastics. At the feeder, I got a text saying that only an hour away from where I live, a EURASIAN WIGEON showed up! Although not in Cook County, I knew we just had to go. It would be our second lifer of the day, and an insane and awesome bird to get. A little over an hour later we were pulling off the road at the pond with our optics in hand and almost immediately I got on the slam dunk adult male Eurasian Wigeon feeding with lots of Gadwall and American Wigeons. What an awesome way to end the day.

BTW, the alder observation is included as a reminder that redpolls love alder trees, and both Common and Hoary Redpolls are irrupting this year!
The Monarch is included to show that there was still a barely alive butterfly in late November! pretty incredible if you ask me.

Stay safe,
Simon

Anotado por brdnrdr brdnrdr, noviembre 22, domingo 05:06

Observaciones

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Piquituerto Aliblanco Loxia leucoptera

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 01:02 PM CST

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Square

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 04:16 PM CST

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Mariposa Monarca Danaus plexippus

Autor

brdnrdr

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Noviembre 21, 2020 04:16 PM CST

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Pato Silbón Mareca penelope

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 04:07 PM CST

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Colimbo Común Gavia immer

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 09:22 AM CST

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Negreta Pico Amarillo Melanitta americana

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 10:19 AM CST

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Square

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Halcón Peregrino Falco peregrinus

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 10:25 AM CST

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Square

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Ardilla Gris de Las Carolinas Sciurus carolinensis

Autor

brdnrdr

Fecha

Noviembre 21, 2020 01:25 PM CST

Descripción

I never thought I'd say that a squirrel would be the star of the show when I'm looking at a White-winged Crossbill in Chicago. It was hanging onto the feeder by one leg.

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