A Red Admiral went through my yard this afternoon (Jim Burk had 3 today) and I saw an Easter(n) Comma at Peers Wetland.
Yesterday I ventured down to Hillman Marsh first thing to look for some early shorebirds.
While it is not unusual to have Dunlin and Pectoral Sandpipers this time of year, I saw both species for the first time this year. They had showed up recently. The Dunlin (7) were seen in the morning.
|3 Distant Dunlin|
On to Point Pelee, I saw a nice male Ring-necked Pheasant in a usual spot. They are certainly difficult to find anymore. I don't know where to find them around Rondeau these days!
I started walking at the Tip where it was uncomfortably cold. Some recently-arrived Golden-crowned Kinglets were in the woods, but not much else.
I walked up west beach trail to the "serengeti tree" and while looking at the ducks on the lake, I heard the call note of a Yellow-rumped Warbler behind me. It seemed to be a bit different, but I turned around to look for it. I only got a brief look at first, but then managed a better look. It turned out to be an "Audubon's" Yellow-rumped! A female no doubt with the pale yellow throat and plain face. It was, unfortunately on the move and I could not get a photo. At least I saw it well-enough to ID.
A female was found earlier in the winter by Jeremy Bensette farther north in the park on February 5. I looked for that one the next day to no avail. It was found again March 12 by Jeremy Hatt at the Tip parking lot. The bird is well-travelled.
Some are found each year somewhere in the province, but not all are documented. I know there are a couple for Rondeau undocumented and I am guilty of not documenting one I saw 21 years (!) ago north of Wallaceburg.
|2015 Sarnia bird found by C.B.|
After a couple hours in the park, I went back to Hillman Marsh shorebird cell and ticked off some Pectoral Sandpipers. Too distant for any sort of a photograph in the poor weekend light.
Lots of Northern Shovelers (200+) were present.
Looking in an easterly direction at the viewing hut, there were lots of ducks. Most were Gadwall and one was leucistic. It may have been a Redhead though. I had one identical bird at Erieau in early January.
On the way home, I checked the old Dover Township and St. Clair NWA environs. There were still a few groups of Tundra Swans. Lots of wet spots, but no shorebirds. Greater Yellowlegs were seen the previous day.
Today, Sunday, I went down to Rondeau Park for a while. It was a nice day for a change but nothing spectacular was seen. However, I heard there was a Caspian Tern, which would be record early by 8 days.
I did have a FOS Common Loon fly by south point.
More Easter(n) Phoebes were in among the dozens of kinglets and a few Easter(n) Towhees.
Bald Eagles are nesting in the area and this one always seems to be perched along the south point shoreline.
I quick check of Erieau revealed lots of ducks, but not the Harlequins. They can be elusive at times, so possibly still present. It is quite unusual to have a pair there.
The next week should see more new migrants as spring is in the air.