Sunday, June 10, 2018

Crop Touring in Lambton

I was not sure where to go today since this never-ending crappy weekend weather has gone beyond ridiculous.  In any case, I opted to check some areas around Sarnia.
First stop was the old Blackwell Landfill at the east end of Sarnia.  I had a hunch that Dickcissels were back on territory and indeed I was correct.

At the crest of the hill, I began hearing the familiar song of the Dickcissel.

There were two in close proximity to each other.

Just over the hill to the north, I came across a third individual.  A search of the rest of the dump did not reveal any others.  Likely females will arrive soon.

While in the area, I decided to do a complete circle of Perch Creek Habitat next door to the old landfill.  The usual residents were there.  It is a good spot for butterflies, but one would have to go there on a weekday when we get nice weather.

My next walk was a Dow Wetlands.  On the way, I checked some spots where Dickcissels were present last year, but to no avail.
At Dow, there were lots of Savannah Sparrows, as usual, plus Eastern Meadowlarks.

I made an effort to find Upland Sandpiper, but for some reason I could not find any!
This area used to have Northern Bobwhite at least until 2003 when I worked in the area that spring.  We did have one there in June 2012, but whether it was a released bird or a leftover wild bird, is up to speculation.

The only bird of note was a Red-breasted Nuthatch in the Red Pines. It was certainly out of place for location and time of year.

After Dow, I went up to Modeland Road north, where a Snowy Owl has decided to spend summer vacation.

There are a few Snowy Owls still in SW Ontario including one near Pain Court, and a couple near Strathroy.

Sarnia Bay was next on the agenda, even though it is a spot I do not usually get to this time of year.  In the Bay was a male Canvasback, seemingly out of place for this time of year.
It is not entirely unheard-of in Lambton this time of year, as once in a while one may be found in the St. Clair Flats or around the Walpole Island complex.

After some fries at Mr Chip in Corunna, I went over to Moore WMA along Bickford Line.  Black Creek was finally quite low.  There were no birds of note, but lots of mussels were on the mud at the crossing.  One can find several species here.
It is a bit early for Mocha Emerald, but I checked anyway along one of the little tributary streams.  I did see this leech (I think) swimming around.

A quick check of the field at McKellar Tract revealed more ticks than birds or insects.  It was another spot I wanted to check for Dickcissel.

I have checked several spots in the last couple of days for Dickcissels, but none have shown....yet.

Tomorrow, nice weather will be here to signal the end of the weekend.

Least Skipper

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