Thursday, January 15, 2015

Update January 15

Its been one cold week and ice build-up has been tremendous especially on the St. Clair River.  It certainly concentrated waterfowl.
A number of people got out to the river this week to try for the Barrow's Goldeneye-a big rarity in these parts!  (Last one I know about was a female late December 1995).  Ice conditions have been constantly changing, but some open water remained for that duck and others in the vicinity of Cathcart Park.

Passing ice-breakers and ships would stir them up on occasion.  I went out at noon on Monday and may have had the subject whistler at the last second before it took off.  It was tough to get, as one shivered in the wind.
I went out again late Tuesday--a beautiful but cold late afternoon but only got a brief and unsatisfying look at the duck from a distance.

Viewing was pretty good on Wednesday as many people got to see it, but I did not get out.  A decent photo is on PAW's blog (see side bar) and a video around the same time is on the Windsor Ojibway Facebook.
Ice really moved in today so perhaps the Barrow's was forced to got to the Michigan side.
Hundreds of Canada Geese were at the OC outfall as well as a few ducks today.  I do not know if the Barrow's was seen today at all.

Ships still require ice-breaker assistance in the lower river where the ice is jammed thick.  Water levels rose considerably a few days ago due to the jam, but today suddenly dropped.
I was working away in the shop this morning and heard a thunderous rumble.  I knew what it was and went outside to see the ice suddenly drop in the cut about 20".  With all the pilings, it was quite a sight to see!  If it went the other way, it would be rather scary for the docks and boathouses.

With mild weather forecast for this weekend, ice will be moving again.  I hope to get out on Saturday to check out the river.  We are overdue for a Tufted Duck as well!

My daily Owl!

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