Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Mid-week Meanderings

As the nice weather continues this week, I have been out and about a bit after supper.  Last evening I went for a walk along the shore trail at Mitchell's Bay.

Some birds included a flyby Sandhill Crane (as seen above), Ruby-crowned Kinglets and Yellow-rumped Warblers along the trail.  I have found that fall seems to be better along that trail!
Thousands of ducks can still be seen out on the Bay.

Detroit Skyline

Martin Islands

I always check for those Yellow-headed Blackbirds, but none have been reported yet to my knowledge.  It is a bit early, but they should be around somewhere.  Their exact location varies from year to year.

Port Lambton was rather quiet this morning.  A couple of Common Loons (first I have seen there this year) were migrating north first thing.

Around supper time today I took a look at Peer's Wetland. It is only a five minute drive from the house, so it is rather convenient.  I just started walking, and an early Blue-gray Gnatcatcher greeted me on the trail.  A couple of Yellow-rumped Warblers and a Brown Thrasher were on 'Chicken Island'.  A few different ducks were there as well.

Lately, including today, one could see thick plumes of black smoke on Walpole Island.  Each spring there is a lot of burning.  Much of it is phragmites which burns up quite nicely!  Of course that just gets rid of last year's stalks and it comes back even thicker sometimes.
So much of the marshes are hidden with the stuff anymore unfortunately.  Even ten years ago while doing some atlas work on the island, it was frustrating to do some walking on the dikes.  One morning we were going to do a big circle, but were turned back due to the thickness of the phrag on one of the dikes near Goose Lake.

View from Stewart Wetland at noon

Hopefully the weekend will be decent to get out and find some early migrants.  Every year is different and it is interesting to see what turns up.  For example, three year's ago (April 14) we found a record early Yellow-throated Vireo at Rondeau.

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