Sunday, March 29, 2009

Pretty Slim Pickings

Birding this week has been pretty bad. We went all the way to Brighton, yesterday, to Presqu'ile Provincial Park. We heard some pretty good reports, especially of waterfowl present. It fact, it was week two of their Waterfowl Festival.

Well, there was not a whole lot to be festive about. When we arrived I was happy to see a Great Blue Heron fly over head. Wow, I thought, this augured well for the day. Boy, was I wrong! We saw a lot of Song Sparrows, Robins, 1 Golden-crowned Kinglet,1 Pine Siskin; which I only heard but took off when I approached. Lots of Mute Swans, 2 Turkey Vultures, crows, Mallards, and Bufflehead. Not what I was expecting to see after an hour-and-a-half drive.

I decided to try to enjoy the beauty of this place; and it was beautiful. We went for a walk down one trail that wound through the pines and out to the wetlands. It was incredible. Certainly, worth the trip just to go hiking, and camping. I am going to pretend that I won't go back there for the birds.(Yeah, right! It is a birding hotspot spring, summer, and fall.) We did end up seeing about 100 Ring-necked Ducks in the end, but I was hoping to see Tundra Swans, and Snow Geese.

We stopped at Coburg Harbour, but all we saw there, besides the usual Mallards, and Ring-Billed Gulls, were some Trumpeter Swans, and a pair of Kildeer. I took pictures of one duck that was very far off, and I'm certain it's female Harlequin duck, but my husband thought the picture wasn't detailed enough. He says it's probably a Surf Scoter. Hey, I've been wrong before.

We stopped at Newcastle Harbour, and didn't see much of anything at all. Someone had recently seen a Swangoose, but it, apparently, has left.

Finally, we stopped at Humber Bay East. Pickings were pretty slim there too, but we did get to see some Northern Shovelers pretty close up.

When will Spring Migration really start?

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