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 Jackson Audubon Society

 The Audubon Society of Jackson County, Michigan

  • Monday, October 26, 2020 9:03 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    We’ve moved from cool to cold but we still had a lot of visitors watching for cranes tonight.  The rain last week likely moved our water level up a bit which makes our crane counts go down.  There were several good flyovers above the Harold Wing lookout despite the relatively low numbers of cranes that stayed in Mud Lake Marsh tonight.  Cranes are still coming down from the UP, so we expect traffic to continue through Jackson county.

    We saw a pair of Trumpeter Swans with a cygnet in tow-always good to see the generations continuing.  An egret and a heron  joined the ducks in the march while 3 harriers coasted above the water and grass.

    Next Monday we will be participating in the annual USFWS annual crane count.

    Crane counters:   Gary Siegrist & Steve Jerant
    Compiler:  Steve Jerant
    Submitted by Steve Jerant

    Crane Count:  58 (183 total observed)
    Species count:  33

    41 Canada Goose

    3 Trumpeter Swan -- 2 adult w/ 1 signet

    3 Wood Duck

    7 Gadwall

    4 American Wigeon

    2 Mallard

    8 American Black Duck

    3 Green-winged Teal

    15 Ring-necked Duck

    4 Hooded Merganser -- 2 pairs

    4 Pied-billed Grebe

    41 American Coot

    10 Sandhill Crane

    1 Great Blue Heron

    1 Great Egret

    3 Northern Harrier

    1 Bald Eagle

    1 Red-tailed Hawk

    1 Eastern Screech-Owl

    3 Downy Woodpecker

    1 Hairy Woodpecker

    2 Northern Flicker

    1 Blue Jay

    7 American Crow

    4 White-breasted Nuthatch

    1 Carolina Wren

    3 Eastern Bluebird

    55 American Robin

    15 Cedar Waxwing

    4 American Goldfinch

    500 Red-winged Blackbird

    4 Rusty Blackbird

    2 Northern Cardinal

    View this checklist online at

    You can view past postings and historical crane counting data on the Haehnle web site at
  • Wednesday, October 21, 2020 7:25 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    From Gary S.:

    We had 534 cranes seen last night from observation hill with 324 staying to roost in Mud Lake Marsh. Most of the crane flew right over where we were standing. Good raptor night with 3 Bald Eagles (one was an adult that caught prey so young could feed), 2 Northern Harriers (Adult male and juvenile), 2 Red-tail Hawks, and 1 Sharp-shinned Hawk. There was lots of waterfowl to be seen with a scope including the Trumpeter Swans. Despite the weather it was a good night. 

    Crane counters:   Gary Siegrist & Ross Green 

    Compiler:  Gary Siegrist

    Submitted by Steve Jerant

    Crane Count:  324 (534 total observed)
    Species count:  50

    Canada Goose  25

    Mute Swan  1

    Trumpeter Swan  2

    Wood Duck  2

    Blue-winged Teal  12

    Northern Shoveler  3

    Gadwall  70    See photo

    American Wigeon  50    Conservative

    Mallard  18

    American Black Duck  3

    Green-winged Teal  5

    dabbling duck sp.  50

    Ring-necked Duck  7

    Pied-billed Grebe  6

    American Coot  85

    Sandhill Crane  534    324 landed in marsh

    Wilson's Snipe  1

    Ring-billed Gull  1

    Great Blue Heron  2

    Great Egret  4

    Northern Harrier  2

    Bald Eagle  3

    Eastern Screech-Owl  2

    Red-bellied Woodpecker  2

    Downy Woodpecker  3

    Hairy Woodpecker  1

    Pileated Woodpecker  1

    Northern Flicker  1

    Blue Jay  2

    American Crow  2

    Black-capped Chickadee  6

    Tufted Titmouse  3

    kinglet sp.  1

    White-breasted Nuthatch  3

    Carolina Wren  3

    European Starling  300

    Eastern Bluebird  3

    Hermit Thrush  1

    American Robin  200

    Cedar Waxwing  4

    House Sparrow  2

    American Goldfinch  2

    Field Sparrow  1

    White-crowned Sparrow  6

    White-throated Sparrow  11

    Song Sparrow  2

    Swamp Sparrow  3

    Eastern Towhee  1

    Red-winged Blackbird  400

    Common Grackle  150

    blackbird sp.  100

    Yellow-rumped Warbler  1

    Northern Cardinal  2

    View this checklist online at

    You can view past postings and historical crane counting data on the Haehnle web site at 

  • Monday, October 12, 2020 9:44 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    We had a good deal of crane activity tonight. Near sunset there were about ten close flyovers above the overlook.  Two groups had juvenile cranes due to the squeaky call.

    I’d estimate 50 to 75 cranes flew into and over Haehnle but only 7 will spend the night at the Sanctuary.  There was a lot of crane activity observed to the northwest.

    In addition to the cranes we had three Norther Harrier including a male juvenile that was getting his adult coloration coming in.

    There were lots of ducks, but the weather was affecting visibility and the coming storm reduced our light.

    Crane counters:   Gary Siegrist, Ross Green, & Steve Jerant
    Compiler:  Steve Jerant
    Submitted by Steve Jerant

    Crane Count:  7 (312 total observed)
    Species count:  38

    Canada Goose  35

    Mute Swan  1

    Trumpeter Swan  2

    Blue-winged Teal  20   

    American Wigeon  1

    Mallard  10

    Pied-billed Grebe  2

    Mourning Dove  1

    Sandhill Crane  312    Only 7 stayed in marsh

    Wilson's Snipe  1

    Great Egret  1

    Northern Harrier  3

    Bald Eagle  1

    Eastern Screech-Owl  1

    Belted Kingfisher  3

    Red-bellied Woodpecker  2

    Downy Woodpecker  1

    Hairy Woodpecker  1

    Northern Flicker  1

    Eastern Phoebe  1

    Blue Jay  1

    Black-capped Chickadee  1

    Carolina Wren  2

    European Starling  6

    Eastern Bluebird  4

    American Robin  40

    Cedar Waxwing  21

    Purple Finch  1

    American Goldfinch  5

    Field Sparrow  2

    Dark-eyed Junco  1

    White-crowned Sparrow  10

    White-throated Sparrow  12

    Song Sparrow  15

    Swamp Sparrow  30    Ross found in emergent marsh

    Red-winged Blackbird  500

    Rusty Blackbird  1

    Yellow-rumped Warbler  2

    View this checklist online at

    You can view past postings and historical crane counting data on the Haehnle web site at 

  • Monday, October 05, 2020 10:03 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    The count tonight was uneventful.  We saw a trio of immature Norther Harriers, a few fall warblers, and six sparrow species.  With the Egrets a no-show and only one Great Blue Heron, I’m thinking fishing season looks to be coming to an end.

    We had only 7 cranes settled in the marsh and most of them left before sunset. The night was clear and the colors are just starting, so I’m looking forward to some spectacular sunsets in the weeks ahead on the marsh.

    Crane counters:   Gary Siegrist, Ross Green, & Steve Jerant

    Compiler:  Steve Jerant
    Submitted by Steve Jerant
    Species count:  38

    Crane Count:  2 (132 observed in the area)

    60 Canada Goose

    25 Wood Duck

    17 Blue-winged Teal -- Flock in flight

    8 Mallard

    4 American Black Duck

    2 Pied-billed Grebe

    132 Sandhill Crane -- 2 in marsh

    1 Great Blue Heron

    4 Turkey Vulture

    3 Northern Harrier

    3 Red-tailed Hawk

    3 Red-bellied Woodpecker

    3 Downy Woodpecker

    1 Northern Flicker

    2 Eastern Phoebe

    1 Yellow-throated Vireo -- Spotted by Gary S

    2 Red-eyed Vireo

    6 American Crow

    3 Black-capped Chickadee

    3 White-breasted Nuthatch

    1 Brown Creeper

    9 European Starling

    7 Eastern Bluebird

    9 American Robin

    19 Cedar Waxwing

    5 American Goldfinch

    2 Field Sparrow

    5 White-crowned Sparrow

    14 White-throated Sparrow

    4 Song Sparrow

    4 Lincoln's Sparrow

    4 Swamp Sparrow

    200 Red-winged Blackbird

    1 Nashville Warbler

    1 Northern Parula

    1 Yellow-rumped Warbler

    1 Black-throated Green Warbler

    3 Northern Cardinal

    eBird checklist is available at:

    You can view past postings and historical crane counting data on the Haehnle web site at

  • Monday, September 21, 2020 8:40 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    We had a clear night for watching birds from the overlook and along the trails at Haehnle.  Highlights include both black and yellow-billed Cuckoos, 6 migrating warbler species, two Common Nighthawks, and another Black-Crowned Night Heron again this week.  Cranes were few, with only two in the march but they did not stay overnight in Mud Lake Marsh.

    eBird checklist is available at:

    Crane counters:   Gary Siegrist, Ross Green, & Steve Jerant
    Compiler:  Steve Jerant
    Submitted by Steve Jerant

    Crane Count:  0 (9 observed in the area)
    Species count:  45

  • Monday, September 21, 2020 8:39 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    Jackson Audubon lost a lifetime member and former board member in the passing of Paul Brencher on September 11.

    Paul Brencher was a true gentleman who had 0 enemies. He kept his love for plants and the natural world, his desire to rope in others, and his Boilermaker fandom membership to the very end. He left tons of friends who owe him our thanks. –MK

    His obituary is available on the Jackson Citizen Patriot.

    Members of JAS at Paul's memorial on September 19.

    Donations in Paul's memory may be made to The Nature Conservancy Michigan Chapter, Jackson College Foundation nursing program scholarships, or a conservation organization of your choice.

  • Wednesday, March 18, 2020 8:50 AM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    From Gary Mason, JAS VP:
    Jackson Audubon Society cares deeply about the welfare of our members and the broader Jackson community. We are carefully considering which of our programs and events we should still offer and which ones we should cancel, in light of the Coronavirus concerns. We are cancelling our April program, but our upcoming spring waterfowl field trip will still be held (with appropriate precautions urged for all participants). Our Tuesday Morning outings are cancelled until further notice. We are seeking to follow the guidelines set forth by health officials and Michigan Audubon. We encourage everyone to be safe and look for ways to help and support others during this challenging time.

    Michigan Audubon Response to COVID-19

  • Tuesday, January 28, 2020 1:14 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    Fourteen JAS members came out on Tuesday for our annual Haehnle Sanctuary winter tour and a search for the elusive Golden Eagle.  Gary Siegrist, Haehnle's director, was on hand for a guided tour of the grounds.  After a brief history of the sanctuary we walked the nature trail past winter stands of native grasses and into the woods. 

    Several habitat restoration projects are underway and Gary provided insight into the process and showed results of the work.  We walked out the prairie in the back of the preserve and saw results of a recent burn and planting.

    After the Haehnle walk, we drove out to the Dalton/Hawkins Rd. area near the old Jackson Prison grounds.  We spotted a Golden Eagle, Bald Eagle, Red-Tailed Hawk, and Northern Shrike.  A flock of about 30 American Robins helped raise the temperature a few degrees.  Later, while looping back, a few of us also saw a light morph Rough-legged Hawk.

    We finished out with a lunch at the Clear Lake Grill.

    Haehnle eBird Checklist
    Dalton/Hawkins eBird Checklist

  • Saturday, January 18, 2020 1:00 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    ​by Lynne Eckerle

    Jackson Audubon’s Tuesday Morning Group traveled to Hidden Lake Gardens in Tipton on January 14th for Robert Ayotte’s presentation, Environmental Toxidromes, Rashes, Poisonings and Enviromation.  Enviromental Toxidromes are substances that create a syndrome caused by dangerous toxins in the body.  Common symptoms include dizziness, disorientation, nausea, vomiting and shaky or blurred vision.  Enviromation is the exposure to a poison or toxin resulting from a bite or sting from an animal such as a snake, scorpion, spider, insect or from marine life.

    It is surprising the number of plants, insects and animals that cause physical and sometimes physiological reactions.  These effects range from the barely noticeable to sneezing and itchy eyes caused by pollens, severe rashes from touching plants such as giant hogweed and a quick and painful death by ingesting poison hemlock.

    Also mentioned were the use and dangers of several mind altering substances found in nature.  The most bizarre was the practice of sucking toads for the bufotoxin they excrete as a means of self-defense.  Bufotoxin can cause hallucinations, uncontrollable salivating, coughing, vomiting and convulsions.

    Robert also lead a conifer walk around the pond; explaining how to identify the different species of trees by the formation and placement of the needles, through the shape of the trees and the structure of the pine cones.

    Robert is the Vice President of the Huron Valley Chapter of the Michigan Botanical Club.

    Post and Photos by Lynn Eckerle

  • Tuesday, November 05, 2019 8:31 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

    This week was the USFWS fall crane count.  So this is the official government count for us:  2.  Ron Hoffman & I counted in an adjacent property to the north of the sanctuary and our numbers were about the same.

    eBird checklist is available at:

    Crane counters:   Gary Siegrist & Ross Green

    Compiler:  Gary Siegrist

    Submitted by Steve Jerant

    Crane Count:  02 (21 observed in the area)

    Species count:  31

    115 Canada Goose

    3 Trumpeter Swan -- 2 adults and one juvenile  

    7 Wood Duck

    6 Northern Shoveler

    20 American Wigeon

    75 Mallard

    6 American Black Duck

    15 Ring-necked Duck

    9 Hooded Merganser

    21 Sandhill Crane -- 2 stayed in marsh 

    1 Turkey Vulture

    2 Northern Harrier

    2 Bald Eagle

    2 Red-tailed Hawk

    2 Red-bellied Woodpecker

    1 Downy Woodpecker

    1 Hairy Woodpecker

    1 Blue Jay

    8 American Crow

    1 Black-capped Chickadee

    2 White-breasted Nuthatch

    1 Carolina Wren

    2 Eastern Bluebird

    7 American Robin

    15 Cedar Waxwing

    3 House Finch

    3 American Tree Sparrow

    6 Fox Sparrow -- Observed by Gary S

    11 White-throated Sparrow

    7 Song Sparrow

    225 Red-winged Blackbird

    2 Common Grackle

    You can view past postings and historical crane counting data at 

    Haehnle site at

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