Saturday, October 9, 2010

Along Lake Erie

Sunrise at Rondeau

I spent the whole day birding/butterflying today, starting at Rondeau and ending up at Pelee.  There were not huge numbers of birds to be seen, but a decent number.  Sparrows have really come in, as they were everywhere.
Warblers were mostly Yellow-rumped, not surprisingly, but others included Orange-crowned, Black-throated Blue (several), Blackpoll, Black-throated Green, Palm, Nashville and Magnolia.
Kinglets were everywhere as well, as they usually are this time of year.
Most of the time I looked at sparrows.  All the common types were around.  I had hoped for Le Conte's, but there were some I did not get a good look at.  The (poor) photos below suggest a Le Conte's Sparrow.  I have never seen this plumage of Le Conte's before, so I initially thought it was a HY Grasshopper Sparrow.  The streaking certainly points towards Le Conte's.  I saw it on the way down, then managed to find it again on the way north.  Alan Wormington sent me a photo of an immature Le Conte's at De Laurier parking lot which appears to be identical to this sparrow!

Buckeye pair!

Lots of sparrows were along West Beach Trail (south of West beach) to look at, but butterflies were interesting as well.  I saw two Gray Hairstreaks.  It is starting to get late for them there.

Gray Hairstreak on flag

I came across about ten Fiery Skippers, most being at the south end of the trail north of the Tram loop road.

Two American Snouts were nice to see as well. One here posed upside down on Short's Aster.

The best butterfly was a Common Checkered-Skipper in front of the serengetti tree.

There were several other butterflies, including a Spicebush Swallowtail which is also getting late.
Back at Blenheim Lagoons, I came across a late Common Ringlet.

I looked for dragonflies, but there were not many. I did see one Red Saddlebags.  Not new for the year, as there were several at Blenheim Lagoons back in July.  I will save dragonfly watching for another day!
Lots of accipiters were migrating today, plus Turkey Vultures.

Morning Merlin


  1. Blake,

    What a great way to spend a gorgeous Saturday afternoon. Great photos. I wonder what that wildflower is called that the Buckeyes were on?


  2. I believe the wildflower is Smooth Aster. There is a lot out right now, as well as New England Aster which is darker purple. There are different kinds of asters! Not much else in bloom except goldenrod.

  3. I have been informed that the aster is Short's Aster. Common at Point Pelee, but rare for Ontario!