Monday, September 1, 2014

Weekend Birds and Butterflies--Sabine's Gull!

On Sunday I decided to give Rondeau a try despite the weather forecast.  It was quite gloomy in the morning with the forecast saying 80% rain.  As usual, it did not rain!  The sun came out in the afternoon though.
Rondeau was almost birdless, and I kept saying to myself that I have seen more birds in the dead of winter. I guess things are late this year.  Not much moving on the lake either.
However, I at the very end of my walk, I did see a decent flock of warblers, etc. with about a dozen species.


Highlight was a Golden-winged Warbler.  I never did get on it with the camera.

After a couple of fruitless hours in the park, I headed over to Blenheim.  Almost another waste of time!  The ponds are way too high, and sprinklers are powder dry. One decent bird though, was a Common Nighhawk flying around. It was the first one I have seen this summer.
The white Tree Swallow is still present!

The day was far from over, so I wanted to check out Wardsville Woods where Meadow Fritillaries were seen about a week ago.  I have not seen that species in a few years.
There were actually very few butterflies, but I did come across one fresh Meadow Fritillary.

Asters are blooming, giving us some colour.

I was just about to get in my car, when a Milbert's Tortoiseshell alighted on some goldenrod.

Since Skunk's Misery was just around the corner, I drove through.  At one point I heard the distinctive chip of a Hooded Warbler.  Hooded Warblers are fairly common in Skunk's, so this was obviously a leftover just off Sassafras Road.
I went for a short walk on one trail.  This Gray Comma was ahead of me.

The destination on Monday was up for grabs.  It appeared a good SSW wind was brewing.  The forecast showed a light wind, but it was actually very brisk.  So, Point Pelee was the place to go.
Glad I did as there was quite a bit of activity at the Tip (more than Saturday).  Not ten minutes after my arrival, I spotted a Sabine's Gulls to the west!

Kory Renaud was already at the Tip, and I got him on the bird.  Turns out it was a lifer for him!  It was actually the first one I have seen at Point Pelee (finally!).

Oddly, I did not realize this was an adult at the time until I saw the photos on the computer later.  After some email exchanges with Alan Wormington, this is record is the FIRST ADULT seen at Point Pelee!

Shorebirds included several Sanderling (mostly flybys), a Semipalmated Sandpiper and a Ruddy Turnstone on the Tip sand.
Lots of Barn Swallows were moving today.
I stayed until about 11:30, then went looking for butterflies and such.

Apparently this is a Lance-tipped Darner.  (I am going to stick to butterflies!).

There were not many butterflies today.  I saw the three Buckeyes at NW Beach again. Lots of Common Painted Ladies are around right now.

I walked the goldenrod...errr..cactus trail again. Quite a few butterflies and birds were there.  The place is overcome with goldenrod and the trail is not well-defined.

Some photos there:

Black-throated Blue Warbler


  1. Blake, excellent posting here. The Meadow Fritillary was really nice to see. Congrats on the Sabine's Gull! Brilliant find!

  2. There are several trails, but mostly used by ATV's!