Saturday, February 17, 2018

Solitaire Saturday

With the news yesterday that the Townsend's Solitaire was still at Point Pelee, I had to check it out today.  I arrived shortly after 08:00 and some birders were already looking for the bird, including the famous Rick Mayos.  I managed to spot it in a cedar in front of the VC a few minutes after my arrival.
It soon went down to feed on berries.

Nice views were obtained!

There have been a number of Townsend's Solitaires at Point Pelee over the years.  My only other one in the park was in May 2002 at Sleepy Hollow.

After some stellar looks, I went on to walk Shuster Trail, Tilden's Woods and up to the cemetery.  Some Red-winged Blackbirds were going overhead, a sign of early spring.
I encountered a few Yellow-rumped Warblers, but not a big flock as in my last visit.
a Great Blue Heron was a surprise at the end of  Shuster Trail.  Only ice around these parts!

Lots of American Robins were feeding near the Cactus Field trail.

I half expected to come across a Varied Thrush, but no dice.

While there, I encountered a Ruby-crowned Kinglet that obviously has survived this nasty winter. It was in the underbrush where I could not get a photo.

At the cemetery,  both kinds of nuthatches were present.

A walk around De Laurier trail was in order, and I came across a flock of birds early on.

White-throated Sparrow

Among some chickadees was a Tufted Titmouse, rare for Point Pelee.  It remained unseen by the camera.  It was my fourth record for the park.
Some Purple Finches flew over on my walk.  They have been scarce this winter.

Near Hillman, the big flock of blackbirds was still around.  I saw nothing rare among them!

I stopped by Wheatley Harbour to eat my lunch.  Waterfowl was frequenting the Essex side and towards Hillman Marsh.  There were hundreds of Canada Geese, but I could not pick out anything different among them.
At one point I thought I got on a Red-necked Grebe, but then it took off out of sight.  It remains a mystery now!  I would think we should be seeing some by now.

On the drive home, there was not much to be seen.  No Tundra Swans have arrived yet, but I think things will start to happen next week.  Killdeers!

Do you know where this is?....
Pelee Pipe

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