Friday, January 3, 2014

New Year's Eve Birding & New Year's Greetings

Resident Bald Eagles at Pelee

Happy New Year!  I finally got a chance to get out to Point Pelee to do some birding over my Christmas break. I feel bad about not attending the local CBC's as ambitiously as I have in the past, but my health has been lackluster. I made an attempt to go birding on New Years Eve morning with Jeremy Bensette, with the intention of finding some reported Brewers Blackbirds. This posting is a report on that outing from Yesterday.

Out in the Onion Fields, we got good looks at large flocks of Snow Buntings and Lapland Longspurs. One flock at the east end of "Road C" must have had well over 150 Lapland Longspurs! At one point, a small gravel parking lot adjacent to the Onion Fields was covered in Longsurs. As we drove up , the majority of them flushed but a few remained. Large mixed flocks of Snow Buntings were nice to see, as I did not see any about 1.5 weeks ago when I participated in the Lakeshore CBC.

 Another highlight from this outing was to finally see a nice (first of season) dark-morph Rough legged Hawk! I have attempted to see some in the Pleasent Valley area near Kingsville/Harrow but have dipped so far in seeing one (this season). The cloudy/windy cold conditions made photography difficult but at one point, this bird was kiting almost directly above our car! I see so many hawks that end up being Red-tailed Hawks, that I really get excited seeing a rough legged hawk!

On Dec 28th, I was going to Colasanti's in Kingsville and stopped by to see the reported Ross's Goose at Jack Miners Bird Sactuary. It seems like they really made some nice habitat in that field across the road!  I found a Cackling Goose while looking for the Ross's Goose. 

Convincing Cackler?

My ebird checklist can be found here:

Good birding,

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