Trip Report North Shore Sea Duck Trip 2021

Field Trip Report: November 6, North Shore Sea Duck Trip
The North Shore Sea Duck Trip has been an annual trip for Duluth Audubon since 2014! With the exception of 2020 (when we did not run this trip due to COVID-19), the trip has been held during the first week of November. This is a great time to find migrant waterfowl as they move down Lake Superior toward winter areas to the south and east. Sea ducks, like Scoters, Long-tailed Ducks, and Harlequin Ducks, are all found regularly on Lake Superior during the fall. We have had great luck at finding some of these birds during our Sea Duck Trips and this year was no exception!
In total we found 36 species, including 9 species of waterfowl and 7(!) species of finch, across 3 counties on a beautiful fall day! Our group of 11 folks poked along the lake shore, starting in Duluth and eventually ending up in Hovland, MN! We were able to see a handful of Long-tailed Ducks and two White-winged Scoters during our day.While sea ducks might have been tricky to find, our group was dazzled by finch migration!
Finches, especially Common Redpoll and White-winged Crossbill, have been moving in huge numbers along the North Shore over the last week or two. We easily saw 2-3,000 Common Redpolls in migration, as well as a couple hundred White-winged Crossbills throughout our day. We had Common Redpoll at every single stop along the North Shore! Rounding out our finches were a handful of Pine Siskins in migration, a few American Goldfinches, 2 Red Crossbills, a smattering of Pine Grosbeaks, and a single Hoary Redpoll.
A great day in the field with a great group! A full list of species seen during our day is included below.
— Clinton Dexter-Nienhaus, DAS Vice President and Field Trip Coordinator
  • Canada Goose
  • Mallard
  • Green-winged Teal
  • Ring-necked Duck
  • White-winged Scoter
  • Long-tailed Duck
  • Bufflehead
  • Common Goldeneye
  • Red-breasted Merganser
  • Horned Grebe
  • Rock Pigeon
  • American Coot
  • Ring-billed Gull
  • Herring Gull
  • Iceland Gull (Kumlien’s)
  • Bald Eagle
  • Northern Harrier
  • Red-tailed Hawk
  • Rough-legged Hawk
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • Pileated Woodpecker
  • Blue Jay
  • American Crow
  • Common Raven
  • Black-capped Chickadee
  • Red-breasted Nuthatch
  • American Robin
  • Cedar Waxwing
  • Pine Grosbeak
  • Common Redpoll
  • Hoary Redpoll
  • Red Crossbill
  • White-winged Crossbill
  • Pine Siskin
  • American Goldfinch