I photographed this beautiful young male Summer Tanager this past weekend in Good Thunder, MN. I travelled to southern and southwestern MN with a birding group last week. A definite highlight was the gorgeous Summer Tanager that was coming in to a suet feeder at a backyard feeding station. While this bird is considered a “regular” in Minnesota, they aren’t seen too often. Minnesota is just a little north of their normal breeding range. But, they have been seen in northern MN with reports coming in from the North Shore and the BWCA every so often.
Another Tanager, that we saw, was the Western Tanager. They are also considered a regular in MN, but their range of occurrence is out west. A few years ago, I got to see a Western Tanager coming into a feeder in Embarrass, MN. So, it’s another possibility.
The best bird of the weekend was the Say’s Phoebe. This is another western bird that occassionally strays into MN. They are considered “casual” in MN : that is there must be Accepted records in 3-8 years out of the past ten years. A Say’s Phoebe was recorded in Grand Marais last Spring, so it is possible for us here in Crane Lake.
I just got word from Moose Lake, MN that a Ruby-throated Hummingbird has returned. Get that grape jelly and sugar water out there – they’re coming!