South Dakota Birds
South Dakota Ornithologists' Union   
Seasonal Bird Observation Report System    

The 1st record of a Harlequin Duck in South Dakota was discovered on Lake Thompson in Kingsbury County by Jeffrey S. Palmer on 16 Sep 1995. The female/immature male shown in the photograph above remained in the area and was observed by numerous birders through at least 04 October.

Regional and National Birding Organizations

Minnesota Ornithologists' Union  

Iowa Ornithologists' Union  

Nebraska Ornithologists' Union  

North Dakota Birding Society

American Birding Association  

Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology


 Temporal Trends in Spring First Arrival Dates

This 2nd  State Record Arctic Tern found by Jeffrey S. Palmer and Robb F. Schenck was photographed along the west side of the Oahe Dam Tailrace on 16 May 1999.

Madison Temperature Trends
Downy Woodpecker Foraging Ecology

The first documented record of Virginia's Warbler in South Dakota was from Redbird Canyon in western Custer County in early July 1997. There were previous undocumented reports from Wind Cave National Park in Custer County and from Harding County. A survey of this newly discovered population was conducted during the summer of 1998 (Swanson, Palmer, Liknes, and Dean). This discovery significantly extends the known breeding range of the Virginia's Warbler in North America.

Swanson D.L., J.S. Palmer, E.T. Liknes, and K.L. Dean. (2000). A breeding population of Virginia's Warblers in the southwestern Black Hills of South Dakota. The Southwestern Naturalist 45(1): 39-44.


Downy Woodpecker Foraging Ecology
Jeffrey S. Palmer, Rachelle DeBeer, and Amy Tvedt

Many studies indicate sexual differences in the foraging behavior of Downy Woodpeckers. Males tend to forage on smaller branches, higher in the tree, and at a faster rate than do females. Niche partitioning may be the result of male dominance and may serve to decrease competition between the sexes and hence facilitate pair bond formation during the early breeding season. We have investigated the average patch residence times of male and female Downy Woodpeckers foraging in winter at artificially placed suet patches. Males consistently exhibit shorter patch residence times than do females. Is this consistent with the male dominance hypothesis?



Madison Temperature Trends


Temporal Trends in Spring First Arrival Dates

Relationship between the slope of the regressions between FAD and year versus median FAD for individual species in South Dakota and Minnesota. Median FAD is presented as the number of days since 28 February. Both states showed significant positive relationships, indicating that earlier arriving species showed stronger tendencies to arrive earlier in the spring.

Swanson D.L., J.S. Palmer. (2009). Spring migration phenology of birds in the Northern Prairie region is correlated with local climate change. J. Field Ornthol. 80(4): 351-363.



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