Saturday, February 9, 2013

Raptor Search - Ottawa East with Tony Beck

February 5, 8:00 am

I was on call today with hospital driving, so could not meet the group at the start.  Instead I went to Green's Creek on the Rockliffe Parkway and met them there.

There was already a band of photographers there when I arrived, but no sign of a Great Gray Owl.  After a short wait, Tony and the rest of the group arrived - Nina, Rick, Judith, Deanna, Pavel, Antonnia, Bianca, Elke and Pascal.  The last three are new birders.  Pascal had given this trip to Elke as a birthday gift.

We wandered away from the photographers and Tony soon pointed out a Hairy Woodpecker and the first Great Gray Owl.  A short time later, we got a second Great Gray Owl that was very difficult to see against an aspen tree trunk.

We left the owls to the photographers and went to Tim Horton's on Trim Road for a warm up.  From there, we went out Frank Kenny where we stopped to view a perched Peregrine Flacon.

On Giroux, there was a single Horned Lark.  Pascal asked "Where are the horns?"  So we explained Horned Lark 101.

We turned down Dunning and stopped to look at a big blond Coyote.  Tony saw a Cooper's Hawk, but the following cars missed it.  He took the opportunity to point out a Common Raven and explain the difference between them and crows.

We proceeded to Indian Creek Road in Larose Forest, where we saw a small flock of Evening Grosbeaks.  There was a feeder where we saw a Blue Jay, a Downy Woodpecker, Chickadees and many Common Redpolls.

The hospital phoned, so I had to say goodbye.  On the way back to Highway 417, I saw a very dark Wild Turkey all by itself.

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