Monday, May 8, 2017

Rondeau Rocks! May 6-8

the only rocks in Rondeau
(Sorry, I could not resist!)

Frigid birding was the order of the day on Saturday.  It was still cloudy but it did not rain until early evening.  Migrant birds still remained sparse, but the search was on for established migrants/residents and any new arrivals.

Many birds were struggling to find food and this Barn Swallow probably was quite disgusted.  I found it on south point trail in the evening.

South point trail was flooded in several spots due to the immense rain we had.  Boots were essential footwear on that trail!

Nashville Warbler

Loons were still migrating in good numbers and we found a few Red-throated among them.  One nice adult was off the VC, but too far for photos.  I think it is the only breeding-plumaged adult I have seen at Rondeau.

In the evening I caught up with one of the Yellow-breasted Chats lurking in the underbrush beside the trail.

Sunday morning dawned clear and crisp.  It was a joy to finally see the sun! (especially since my feet were frozen).
There were few new arrivals as the relentless north winds continued.
The Prothonotary Warbler was showing well on Tulip tree trail.

Monday morning was clear and crisper!  It got down to about zero celcius overnight and campers such as myself struggled to keep warm.
However, it was evident new arrivals were to be found as Steve Charbonneau and I started out on south point trail.

A number of Black-and-White Warblers had arrived as well as a few other passerines.  A newly-arrived White-eyed Vireo feeding atop a tree had us baffled at first as we only knew it was a vireo.  It was certainly not a Bell's!

A Bell's would have been nice, but Steve and I found one there back in May 2006, so it was not necessarily needed for our Rondeau list.

We found a total of 3 White-eyed Vireos this day.

Red-headed Woodpeckers are present in numbers not seen in many years, as they are all over the park.

Upon arriving back at the VC, we met up with Bill Smith who had just seen a female Western Tanager at the feeder setup area.  (Only five minutes previous!).  We watched for a while, but it never again appeared.  It was another species that Steve and I found (first park record) way back on 4 May 2008, so it was already on our Rondeau list.

A while later, we parted ways and Steve found a Summer Tanager around group camp.  I was not far away, so I arrived in short order to find the first year male wandering around.

Strangley, we later found out that another young male was seen on south point trail about the same time.  I talked to the finder and saw her photo of a male with less red.
We were hoping to see a Scarlet Tanager today, but they just have not arrived in any numbers.

While looking for a Cerulean Warbler on Tulip tree trail, we saw a Blue-winged Warbler (third one of the day) actively feeding.

The Prothonotary Warbler was showing well once again.  Although it was close, it was not in a good position for a photo.

Of course, seeing the White-winged Dove is a daily ritual.

This has been the coldest and slowest May that I can remember, but things will no doubt pick up from now on.


  1. Blake, I had no luck finding the White-winged Dove Saturday.

    1. It can be elusive at times! Perhaps it was behind one of the cottages for some time while you were there.
      Good to see you and that you came over to say hi.