Sunday, January 2, 2011
Ducks 'n Things
I took another look at the St. Clair River today. What else to do this time of year?
With the unusually mild weather (I was not surprised....I had a feeling we would get a thaw right at the end of December), ice has cleared out of the big river. So have the gulls. As I always say, gulls like ice, so they have gone elsewhere. Maybe to Lake Erie!?
With the ice gone, ducks are spread out all along the river. During the now-extended duck hunting season one has to work around hunters! Sifting through the rafts of Canvasback and Redhead to find different species is fun.
I noticed there was finally a good number of Ring-necked especially at Cathcart Park. I had not seen many until now.
Scaup have not been too plentiful yet. Most are Greater.
Lots of Canada Geese are on the river this year--a sign of the increase in population. They are just regular types--no Cackling! I did see a couple that were a bit smaller, but they certainly were not Cacklers.
An interesting find was a male American Wigeon, something new as of late. Usually one or two winter on the river each year.
I saw no sign of the 5 Pintails from Friday. I suspect their appearanace was due to the thaw. Pintails seem to be a significant part of these early spring migrant events.
There was a Double-crested Cormorant in the harbour, and perhaps there were two. I saw one fly out, and ten minutes late there was one sitting on a post in the far NE corner.