During the month of June, baby birds are abundant. Listen for incessant chirping as these baby birds plead for their parents to bring them food. June hatchlings include American robins, Baltimore orioles, bluebirds, gray catbirds, chipping sparrows, house finches, purple martins, mourning doves, house wrens, barn swallows and tree swallows.
Birdsong fills the air
This is a great time of year to rise before dawn to hear the chorus of birds. In addition to the calls of young birds, adult birds sing exuberantly as they continue to establish bonds (some species have multiple clutches each year) and secure their territories. The Minnesota Conservation Volunteer’s interactive Minnesota Bird Songs web page at https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/mcvmagazine/bird_songs_interactive is a great way to learn the songs of 24 common backyard birds.
Become a Loon Monitor
June is also the time to check lakes in the northern two-thirds of the state to see newly hatched common loon chicks riding on their parents’ backs. Your chance of seeing these birds is good as Minnesota has more loons than any other state in the contiguous 48 states. If you love loons, the Minnesota Loon Monitoring Program is a great way to get involved with wildlife studies on lakes near you. Volunteers are needed to visit each lake one morning during a 10-day period (late June through early July) to count the number of adult and juvenile loons. The observations are then shared with the DNR. Thanks to hundreds of volunteers, there is more than 20 years of data on more than 600 lakes. Find out more by downloading the brochure at https://files.dnr.state.mn.us/eco/nongame/projects/mlmp_handout.pdf.
Fishing on the Refuge
Fishing on the Refuge will be held Thursdays and Sundays at the National Eagle Center in Wabasha from June 3 through Aug. 12. Kids 15 and under can fish without a license and learn about the native species that live in the Mississippi River — a great activity to pair with a trip to the National Eagle Center.
More information available online at nationaleaglecenter.org