Thursday, March 25, 2010

The First Spring Arrivals - Ottawa West with Tony Beck

Tuesday Mar 23, 8:00am

It was a wet miserably cold day. Nevertheless, two new birders, Joe & Judy, joined Heather, Tony & me to look for spring arrivals.

We went first to Mud Lake. Where there were many Red-winged Blackbirds.

On the ice of Mud Lake were several Muskrats, and swimming in front were a pair of Hooded Mergansers. On the river there were lots of Common Goldeneye and a pair of Buffleheads. The many gulls on the Quebec side all appeared to be Ring-billed Gulls. On the ridge we saw some Dark-eyed Juncos, a female Northern Cardinal and a Downy Woodpecker. We walked to the east end of the lake and back over to the river. By this time a warm drink was in order.

After a break at Tim Hortons, we drove to Rifle Road where we encountered a sizeable flock of Bohemian Waxwings on the east side and several Wild Turkeys on the west. We went to Hilda feeders, but it was very quiet. We did see an American Tree Sparrow and some Common Grackles and Blue Jays.

We carried on to March Valley Road, where we saw a pair of Hooded Mergansers in the creek under the trio of culverts, and an American Mink trying to sneak up on them.

We drove to Riddell and Sixth Line Rd, then Berry Side Road and onto Fifth Line Road. We stopped to scan for Bluebirds, but instead heard and saw an Eastern Meadowlark and a Blue Jay. On to Constance Creek, on Thomas Dolan where we saw only a male Bufflehead and some Common Grackles. We checked the dead end on Berry Side road and could hear Song Sparrows singing.

No photos today because of the incessant rain and ice pellets.

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