The numbers always fluctuate due to various reasons, but yesterday up to 175 Snow Geese were present according to Allen Woodliffe's observation. As well, up to 6 Ross's Geese were picked out.
There was no doubt some Ross's Geese were present, but getting good looks was essential.
In recent years we have been seeing more of these geese, and more hybrids are becoming apparent. There are some hybrids among this flock, undoubtedly.
It is certainly an unprecedented number of Snow Geese for this part of the province.
|Snow Geese Mid-day Saturday|
The finding of apparent "Bewick's" Swans has been another highlight. It was a strange event on Saturday which I will not get into detail here. I had picked out a leucistic swan which otherwise struck me as a "Bewick's". On the way home, I saw Reuven Martin's post about finding a "Bewick's" Swan. I wondered what was going on!
In the end, there turned out to be two swans, both of which were still being seen on Tuesday.
As we know, "Bewick's" is the Eurasian version of the Tundra Swan, sometimes seen in North America. Just last year, one was seen at Point Pelee in the Onion Fields area.
The yellow blob on the bill is variable and has been seen in several forms. They are given names according to shape.
Here is a link to a website/blog that Alan Wormington provided:
I copied one of the photos here for detail where you can see the different types.
|Unique bill patterns of Bewick’s swans. Information panel at WWT Welney. Photograph: Cambridgeshire ACRE.|
I am not sure if anyone got a good look at bill pattern of the Shrewsbury swans, but it would be interesting to know what type they are.
With rather cold weather upon us, Rondeau Bay will be refreezing and many of these waterfowl will depart after an early "spring" migration.