Saturday, November 15, 2014

Rondeau & Area Stuff

It looked like a good day to check out Rondeau.  Arriving around sunrise, the park was rather quiet with little wind.  Lots of White-tailed Deer were along Lakeshore Road, an indication of far too many in the park.  Just today a press release in the Chatham News described an upcoming cull.

I started walking on south point trail as usual and walked to the washout and back.  Warblers included a group of ten Yellow-rumped.  Nearby, a Nashville Warbler was working the dogwoods, but I was unable to get a photo of this bright yellow bird.

A few Golden-crowned Kinglets  were around as well as at least one Ruby-crowned.
Pine Siskins were flying overhead as always and a couple of Purple Finches were making rounds.
Several Fox Sparrows are still in the park as well.

The lake was rather quiet today.  A few ducks included a flyby of a lone Long-tailed.  Did not see a single loon today, so they have thinned out since last weekend.

Sign of the Times

Arriving back at the parking lots, a large flock of Juncos, etc. were there.  Field Sparrow was among them and of course American Tree.  Managed a full-framer!

Chipping Sparrows were around today too.

Next walk was the campground where I met Steve Charbonneau.  Two Turkey Vultures were circling the whole time.

Nothing much of note there, but there were many Brown Creepers today.  A few Eastern Bluebirds flew overhead, and a couple of American Robins represented the thrush department.

I walked Black Oak trail for a change and came across the elusive Pileated Woodpecker.  It was not co-operative for a photo!  Might as well get a look now, as it will not be seen December 14, LOL!

Viewing conditions were good for ducks behind Rondeau Joe's.  A good variety of ducks could be seen including lots of wigeon. I specifically looked for the Eurasian.....and found one!  It was not far off, mixing with its counterpart ducks.  Could be some American Wigeon genes in this one though as  am seeing a bit of green on the face.

I should have spent more time there, but there was a bitter wind coming in off the Bay.

After my usual sub sandwich in Blenheim, I headed over to the lagoons.  The only shorebirds were Dunlin as far as I could find.  Close to 50.  Sparrows were along the edges of the ponds including a Savannah (usual for there), Song, American Tree and a Swamp Sparrow.

Garry Sadler already had checked out the sprinkler cells where a few Dunlin were present. Two cells had too much water, the other two were frozen!

Down at Erieau, the marina and harbour hosted lots of Horned Grebes.  I counted around 70.  Alas, no Eared!

I saw about 6 Double-crested Cormorants in various spots.  No shorebirds, but the Spotted was seen again Thursday.

Along the R/R trail, several Swamp Sparrows, White-throated and this curious Winter Wren.

Wren of the Winter

A last-second decision put me driving down Lagoon Road.  I found a Snowy Owl out along the edge of a field, but it was much too far for a photo. A minute previous, a Peregrine Falcon flew over.

I checked Ridgetown as well, finding many Canada Geese.  A couple of Cackling were there, but I did not look too hard. No other goose species anyway.

Before getting home, I drove 'around the block' and found a Snowy Owl along Langstaff Line. However, it was markedly different than yesterday's bird!  This one was heavily-barred unlike the whiter one I saw late yesterday.  Once again, too far away to photograph.

So, there you have it!

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