Its been almost two weeks since I've been birding. Last weekend, I just couldn't make it out and this last week, I was either working or studying for an exam I had to write this morning. I wrote the exam this morning at 9am and drove directly to Hillman Marsh and Point Pelee. Nothing overly exciting although I did get good looks of all the seasonal migrants that are moving through right now. The highlight was a pair of Orange Crowned Warblers as seen at the end of this posting.
Wow, just driving into the entranceway, I stopped at the self pay area because of the number of birds around. White crowned, White throated Sparrows, along with a few Lincoln's were around. Pelee had these sparrows as well as Song and Swamp Sparrows. Hermit (many) and one Swainson Thrush were seen as well as a Grey Catbird. Ruby Crowned Kinglets are very common right now as well (obviously).
I also stopped by Point Pelee after Hillman. I headed towards the tip parking lot but on the way, couldn't help but stop at Sleepy Hollow due to the shear number of birds that were skulking in the roadside foliage. Myrtle Yellow Rumps and Ruby Crowned Kinglets along with seasonal sparrow species were around. A Red bellied Woodpecker was hanging out there as well.
The Tip of Point Pelee was not overly active today. I did get a chance to run into my friends Rick & Dan from Leamington though. One cool thing about this tip this morning was a whirl-wind of butterflies. Mainly Monarch but some Question mark, Comma, and Red Admiral. They were reluctant to leave the tip and cross the water towards Ohio. Some hawks were flying overhead but basically, I soon left the tip of Point Pelee to check out Shuster Trail.
As you can see below, Shuster Trail had Winter Wrens, a gorgeous Red-Shouldered Hawk and Bald Eagle were seen. More Kinglets, Sparrows and Hermit Thrushes as well. Many Sparrows were around (some singing) and I noted a Swamp Sparrow as well in the bunch. Some trees near the end of Shuster had Rusty Blackbirds and Robins perched. An Eastern Comma butterfly was alone on the East Beach.
As I left Point Pelee, I stopped near the "meadow" at Sanctuary Pond. I checked out a Heron initially but then heard a Caronlina Wren (Breeeeet, Breeet Breeeeett) and followed the sound. Golden crowned Kinglets greeted me along with a late House Wren and an Awesome look at two Orange Crowned Warblers (male and female). These warblers have been very rare to me. I've only seen a female OCW last fall from a great distance and it was pointed out to me. Today, this sexually dimorphic pair of Orange Crowned Warblers were at close range, giving great views. They have a very distinct colour, almost yellowish-green with very distinct spectacles on the male and crisp, sharp beaks.