Friday, September 3, 2010

Shorebirds and Early Fall Migrants - Ottawa East with Tony Beck

Tuesday Aug 31, 7:30 am

We met at Petrie Island – Tony, Nina, Rick, Peter (whom I’ve met a couple of times before), Michael (a new birder) and me.

An American Bittern flew overhead and settled in the reeds. By looking carefully, we could periodically see the top of his head. We played the call, but there was no response, although several Great Blue Herons were moving around. A couple of Wilson’s Snipe flew in too and settled out of sight. Tony heard a Virginia Rail give it’s chip call. They don’t respond well at this time of year, so we did not see it. A Kingfisher rattled and landed in a tree too far away for a photo.

We moved down the road over the bridge and stopped to play the magic machine. Male and female House Finches could be seen at the top of the trees. Tony pished and the Black-capped Chickadees came in along with an Eastern Wood Pewee and a Great-crested Flycatcher. We also spotted Yellow and Yellow-rumped Warblers and an American Redstart and Cape May Warbler. A Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and a Hairy Woodpecker flew over too. And a Gray Catbird could be heard in the bushes. Then we spotted a Blue-headed Vireo. Tony explained that the old name was Solitary Vireo. We also saw a Philadelphia Vireo and female Rose-breasted Grosbeak. Rick spotted a female or young male Scarlet Tanager. Finally we saw an American Robin and a White-breasted Nuthatch, and a flock of Cedar Waxwings passed overhead.

We went for a cold-drink break (it was pushing 33 deg), then drove to Giroux Ponds off Frank Kenny. Tony spotted a female Wood Duck and a family of four American Kestrels. Nina saw a Double-crested Cormorant in the pond, and there were many Killdeer on the spit accompanied by a couple of Semi-palmated Plovers. An Osprey dove into the pond and came up with a Perch. There were Mallards and Canada Geese, and Tony pointed out some Blue-winged Teal.

We drove to Casselman lagoons, but could not go in as there was work going on. So we retreated to Embrum to check out their lagoons. There were a number of Ruddy Ducks at the back of the first cell and also a very early young male Bufflehead and some Blue-winged Teal. I also saw a Pied-billed Grebe. There were several Lesser Yellowlegs along the edge nearest to us, and we were able to take lots of photographs. There was at least one Ruddy Turnstone with the Yellowlegs, and some Semi-palmated and Least Sandpipers too. Then Tony spotted a single Baird’s Sandpiper flying with the flock. In the second cell. We saw an American Black Duck and more Wood Ducks. Finally, Tony spotted a Ruby-throated Hummingbird.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry I missed this trip Bill. Sounds like you got great looks at many uncommon species. Its a real treat that you were able to be so close to the Yellowlegs and your excellent photos show you did not waste the photographic opportunity.