University of Minnesota

Cedar Creek Ecosystems Sciences Reserve offers a rare opportunity to see a rare bird 

The public is invited to see resident population of Red-Headed Woodpeckers June 14

June 6, 2014

One of the largest breeding populations of Red-Headed Woodpeckers calls Cedar Creek Ecosystem Reserve in East Bethel, Minnesota home. On Saturday, June 14, the ecology research site invites the public to observe the rare bird up close.
Red-Headed Woodpeckers, famous for their bright red heads, contrasting black and white bodies and assertive behavior, were once common in the United States. Their numbers have declined by more than 50 percent across most of their range in the upper Midwest since the 1960s, partly because their preferred habitats -- dead trees in open, deciduous woods or grassland savannas -- are vanishing. Cedar Creek, a 5,400-acre ecology research site that’s part of the U of M’s College of Biological Sciences, is one of the last strongholds of Red-Headed Woodpeckers in the region.
Members of the Redheaded Woodpecker Recovery Project will lead tours from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. this Saturday. All tours will leave from the Lindeman Research and Discovery Center on a first-come, first-serve basis throughout the morning, with a general presentation at 11:30 a.m.
According to Mary Spivey, CCESR Education and Outreach Coordinator, last year every participant got to see Red-Headed Woodpeckers and a total of 61 other species were observed. “I've never been disappointed when we’ve taken groups out in past years,” she says.
Directions: Cedar Creek is about 45 minutes north of the Twin Cities in East Bethel, MN. Take Highway 65 all the way to the stoplight at 237th St. Turn right, go one mile and turn left on Highway 26.  Then look for first driveway to the right at 2660 Fawn Lake Drive.
Additional information: There is no cost for the field trips, but reservations are required for those who need van transportation to the nesting sites. Please call Mary Spivey at (612) 301-2602 for reservations or with questions.

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