Sunday, June 1, 2014

Another May has come and gone....

...and I missed most of it yet again.

Actually it wasn't that bad. I did get the Smith's Longspurs (lifer), the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher (new Ontario/Pelee bird) and just yesterday Alan Wormington located what looks REALLY good for a Bicknell's Thrush, which I managed to see as well. A Black Vulture flying over the thrush spot at the tip that day was neat as well! The Bicknell's Thrush brings my Pelee list to 329.

Jeremy Hatt and I also ventured out to Walpole Island on May 17th.  We left my place just after 3:00 am in hopes of hearing King Rail before sunrise.  Unfortunately, the water there was (not unexpectedly) really high and we didn't hear any rails whatsoever.  We also tried for the Northern Bobwhites.  We heard something call, but nothing distinct enough for us to label it as a Bobwhite.  After such a harsh winter we are now wondering how many of these little guys are actually still left on Walpole? 

Coming home from Walpole we stopped at Mitchell's Bay and had great views of the Yellow-headed Blackbirds (no camera...derp!) and had a nice Red Knot out in a field among the Black-bellied Plovers and Dunlin.

One of my favourite days was last weekend on May 21st. I met Jeremy at the tip and later we were joined by Kory.  The birding was good, but what was great was that for a whole hour we were the ONLY ONES THERE! It was so peaceful! Please don't take this the wrong way, I love seeing all the regular birders that come to Pelee every May.  It's those demanding birders that you sometimes run into (and have never met before in my life no less) that see you with a scope and ask you (almost demand you) to point out everything for their group. Anyone else ever have this problem?

On May 30th I met with Mom early in the morning at the Hillman shorebird cell. I always love birding with my Mom! She got her lifer Little Gull (there were 2 that morning). We also had a male Bufflehead, and a Horned Grebe which was interesting.

A blurry photo of a Horned Grebe at the Hillman Marsh shorebird cell on May 30th

Dunlin, Semipalmated Sandpipers, a few Black-bellied Plovers, Bonaparte's Gulls, Green-winged Teal, Blue-winged Teal, Gadwall, Mallard, American Wigeon, a Semipalmated Plover and a White-rumped Sandpiper were also present. After we parted ways I drove down Concession E in hopes that the American Bittern Jeremy Hatt told me about may actually still be there.  It was!

American Bittern Concession E. May 30th.

So here we are now in June.  Aaron and I paddled Cedar Creek this morning which is always a nice short paddle, though I wish someone would go in with a chainsaw to clear the creek of fallen trees north of the greenway trail.  A singing Wood Thrush was (and always is) nice to hear, while the huge colony of Cliff Swallows underneath the bridge at the Arner townline was great to paddle underneath of.  Also had a Duskywing of some kind but couldn't get a real good look at it.

Great Blue Heron at Cedar Creek June 1st, 2014
Cliff Swallows underneath the Arner townline bridge at Cedar Creek

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