|The least bittern is making a comeback |
following the removal of an invasive grass.
Photo: Mike Dee Photography
On tap: Yet more work to divert stormwater and reduce beach closings at the Lake St. Clair Metropark.
Among the birds returning after a nearly decade-long hiatus is the common moorhen (Gallinula chloropus). A dark, duck-like bird with a flamboyant splash of red on its beak, the moorhen is threatened in Michigan.
“This park was always a good stronghold nesting area for moorhens, but over the last eight to 10 years, they declined so horribly that I didn’t even see adults, let alone a nest with babies,” said Julie Champion, eastern district interpretive manager for the Huron-Clinton Metroparks, which includes Lake St. Clair Metropark.
“This past year we had a pair of moorhens and they were calling,” Champion said. “We’re pretty sure that they were a nesting pair because we saw an immature.”
The secretive marsh birds called least bitterns (Ixobrychus exilis), which are threatened, and the songbirds called marsh wrens (Cistothorus palustris), which are species of special concern, are increasing. And other species, such as sora (Porzana carolina) and Virginia rails (Rallus limicola), are also coming back.
Great Lakes Echo - greatlakesecho.org
14 Feb 2013