Sunday, May 12, 2013

Report from the Home of the Yellow-throated Warbler

Back to Rondeau on Friday.  Many of the birds from the previous day had left it seemed.  The day started with pouring rain, but eventually stopped and cleared.
At one point in the morning, I caught up with Mark Peck and Allen Woodliffe who were watching the Yellow-throated Warblers.  No doubt they have nested there, but it would be a first record for Ontario.
A couple of times I saw one gathering nesting material.
 Investigating Insulators


I watched it fly in a certain direction but did not see exactly where it went.  On that trajectory Mark eventually spotted a nest in a pine tree not far away.  However, we never saw a bird come to it!  Something to keep an eye on.
The Yellow-throated Warblers come regularly to the feeders at the VC or the cottage up the road.  Everyone get to see them.  Seems to be a dirt bird at Rondeau anymore....

Friday morning a Worm-eating Warbler was found on spicebush trail by a couple from London.  Only a few got to see it.  Yesterday I refound it and it was still being seen today beside the trail.  It has been an extremely co-operative bird for perhaps hundreds of birders.  It was a lifer for many!
Leaf Litter Bird

This weekend I was doing a Big Day of sorts within the park.  I always gather a little money each year for the Baillie Birdathon of which about 25% of your haul goes to a club of your choice. I coaxed Andrew Keaveney to come along with me this year.  However, luck was not really on our side.  This totally bizarre weather did not help matters even though a pretty good number of birds were around.  It has been one of the strangest years I have ever seen!

Eastern Towhee with nesting material!

However, we managed 115 species or thereabouts. One was the Worm-eating Warbler which I luckily spotted.  I would say that was the best bird of the tally.  I recall many years ago finding this species on a Big Day.
Looking right at me!!

One of our chases was the male Summer Tanager.  However we got there too late, but our consolation prize was a Grasshopper Sparrow.  Not a bad find in Rondeau!
A Yellow-breasted Chat was a nice bird last evening at maintenance.  This species is being harder and harder to come by.  We used to see them quite regularly (among others) at Rondeau.

This weekend I would guess there were just over 140 species in the park looking at other reports.  Rather low for this time of year.

Wilson's Warbler from this morning

This weekend most birds seemed to be in the centre of the park along the sloughs. One could not go far along Rondeau Road without finding a pocket of warblers.  I heard remarks that Rondeau has been better than Pelee, for example, with regards to the number of birds (and some quality) the past couple of days.  (There is life beyond Point Pelee this time of year! lol).

Lincoln's Sparrow--fresh roadkill!

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