Friday, May 15, 2009

Linda's & Susan's warbler discovery day

May 11 2009

Today was the retirement gift warbler discovery outing for Linda & Susan led by Bill. We were delighted to be joined also by Rodney, Cathy & Barbara. We were equally delighted with the beautiful spring weather.

We met at 8:00 am at Mud Lake by the Britannia Filtration Plant.

Red-winged Blackbird

We began at the Ottawa River across from the plant, and then worked our way along the ridge, seeing the first of several Yellow Warblers. Eagle-eye Rodney kept spotting them. Warbling Vireos were also present in good numbers.

Yellow Warbler

Warbling Vireo

At the west end of the ridge, we saw several Yellow-rumped Warblers, and Bill heard a Black-throated Blue Warbler (not seen).

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Across the road, we were beckoned by a photographer group to see a Northern Parula. This small warbler was a very good find for the day list.

Northern Parula

We then followed the trail towards the houses, being careful of the poison ivy. The Yellow Warblers were everywhere! In a large willow tree, we spotted a Baltimore Oriole. Further on there was a Gray Catbird.

We headed back to the trail by the pond. We saw a pair of Wood Ducks, and Bill got them in the scope. We hiked on over to the little bridge, where we saw many turtles basking, including a rare Blanding’s, which Bill also scoped.

Continuing around the trail, we saw an Eastern Kingbird and a couple of Brown-headed Cowbirds high in a tree.

Eastern Kingbird

Brown-headed Cowbird

We went down the spur trail towards the lake, but turned back when we saw a skunk in a hole in a tree right at waist level.

We carried on around towards the parkway, noting a Great Blue Heron fly away and a beaver swim away.

After getting our picture taken by a passing cyclist, we continued through the gate back towards the filtration plant. We saw a Wood Thrush on the path, and a Great-crested Flycatcher on an overhanging branch.

We made our way carefully past the muddy section and saw a White-crowned Sparrow and a Song Sparrow along the fence. Bill first identified the former as a White-throated Sparrow, but had second thoughts later.

Song Sparrow

With noon approaching, we made one last foray to the Ottawa River to show Linda the Canada Geese and goslings. A pair of Northern Flickers entertained us with a little hanky panky. We had also noted both Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers along the waterfront.

Canada Goose

Northern Flicker

What a great day we had!

Bird List

Yellow Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Northern Parula, Warbling Vireo, Blue Jay, Northern Cardinal, Red-winged Blackbird, Baltimore Oriole, Gray Catbird, Canada Goose, Wood Duck, Mallard, Great Blue Heron, Eastern Kingbird, Brown-headed Cowbird, Great-crested Flycatcher, White-crowned Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Wood Thrush, Northern Flicker, Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Black-capped Chickadee, American Crow, European Starling.

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