After finishing our meal, stacking the dishes for Mom to fill the dishwasher and packing up some delicious leftovers to bring home, we headed for home with a short detour through rural Fillmore County to see if we could find the White Winged Scoter that had been spotted a week ago. Along the way, we saw this fox running across a field and heading for the road.
After turning the car around so I could take some better photos, the fox had the same idea -- turn around and run!
After turning down another gravel road, we finally spotted the pond where the scoter was supposed to be hanging out at. I first spotted this Lesser Yellowlegs scouting the muddy edge closest to the road.
And there he was! The White Winged Scoter! (click on the photo to enlarge it) The first ever recorded sighting of this bird in Fillmore County.
We first heard about this duck earlier last week when we were out birding and ran into Chris Hockema. Chris told us the duck's plumage was somewhat different than what's usually seen on an adult males scoter, but that the dark head and white eye "comma" were easily seen for a definitive ID. I was really glad this duck was still hanging around and we got a chance to see it. Thanks to John and Chris Hockema for locating the duck and sharing its location with other Minnesota birders.