Thursday, January 21, 2010

Winter Specialties - Ottawa West with Tony Beck

Tuesday Jan 19, 8:00am

We met at the Coliseum – Al, Heather, Rick, me and Tony. Today, we were always on the lookout for the Gyrfalcon. We went directly to Britannia Conservation Area, and after scanning the ice on Mud Lake, we headed up onto the ridge. We saw several Mallards in the swift water and a MallardxBlack hybrid. Also we saw a male Common Goldeneye.

As we walked west to the end of the ridge, we came upon a flock of a dozen or more American Robins. A male Northern Cardinal was also lurking in the bushes. Tony and Rick heard Cedar Waxwings and we struggled to see a couple in the dense shrubbery.

We left and went to the Deschenes Rapids lookout on the Ottawa River Parkway – nothing there. So we headed to Tunney’s Pasture to check the Coats Building – nothing on the north or west sides; so we went around to the Beer Store on Scott St. and spotted two Peregrine Falcons on the east side perched by the lights. One was facing away, but the other gave us a chance to digiscope. Heather spotted a House Sparrow, a Hairy Woodpecker, a Blue Jay and a European Starling on the building adjoining the Beer Store parking lot.

Despite seeing two falcons, the Gyrfalcon eluded us. We went to Bate Island to look for the Barrows Goldeneye, but had to settle for dozens of Common.Goldeneye and a nice male Common Merganser.

Still trying for the Gyr, we went to the Experimental Farm, where we found a tree loaded with House Finches. Crossing the road towards Hartwell’s Locks, we saw a female Pileated Woodpecker and also a Downy. We drove to the Clyde Avenue snow dump to check the quarry for you know what. But all we got was a Common Raven. We drove all the way out to Hilda Road where there was nothing but Black-capped Chickadees, a Blue Jay and several American Tree Sparrows.

On the way back, Tony spotted a flock of about 50 Bohemian Waxwings at the Corner of James Cummings and Carling Avenues, opposite Moodie Dr.

1 comment:

  1. Wild Waxwings...Bohemian Party...Aerial Acrobats...great photo!