Saturday, November 3, 2012

In and around the Pelee area November 3rd

Today I picked up Jeremy Hatt,  went to the Tip of Point Pelee and began our day with visions of Cave Swallows, Alcids, and other wonderful birds that would still be misplaced since the wrath of Hurricane Sandy....It didn't turn out that way.

Not that the day was a complete bust.

At the Tip a lot of eyes were scanning for anything out of the ordinary.  Highlights were all 3 scoters, and a Sanderling.  I guess with northwest winds it's to be expected that the tip may not be as productive as you hope.

Walking north along the east beach there was a nice hawk flight with Red-shouldered, Red-tailed, Northern Harrier, Sharpies, Coop's, but no Golden Eagle today. A few Eastern Phoebes were along the beach, as well as Eastern Bluebirds which were quite numerous in the park today.

Even Sparrow Field was rather quiet with Grey Catbird being the highlight. Kory Renaud told us about an Eastern Screech-Owl near Sanctuary Lookout which is always a delight to see.

I guess the highlight, or you could say the rarest bird we had inside the park was a Hairy Woodpecker which we saw while watching for raptors at the visitor centre parking lot.

Not much to see while driving around the onion fields except a White-tailed Deer along concession E, and a Northern Watersnake, which Jeremy helped avoid getting run over by moving it off the road.

 White-tailed Deer, Concession E.  Photo by Marianne Reid Balkwill 
Northern Watersnake.  Photo by Marianne Reid Balkwill

We ended the day at Wheatley Harbour in hopes of Cave Swallow.  No Cave Swallows today except we did have an adult Little Gull and a juv. Glaucous Gull.  Jeremy also found a gull on the lake that looked to have limited black on the primaries.  He scrutninized it while it sat on the lake for the longest time as it would never gave us a good look.  Thayer's Gull got tossed around until it took flight and then we saw that the bird was actually missing some primaries!  Sneaky Herring Gull.

In other news it looks like it will be a bumper crop for finches this winter.  I don't even have my birdfeeders set up yet the way I want them so that may be a project tomorrow as Aaron has to build the posts that they will be hanging on.  I'm really hoping for Evening Grosbeak this winter.


  1. Yah, where are those Cave Swallows? Seem to be well east of here. Still time I guess.
    Finches are plentiful though...

  2. Steve Pike had one at the Tip on November 2, Blake. But beyond that one, I haven't heard of any west of the Long Point area yet. I'm hoping to somehow get lucky seeing one still even though I'm starting work full-time (though I do have Saturday free so maybe that will be the day!).