|White-winged Scoter at close range - Previously taken in 2011!|
The Detroit River has been the highlight of my winter birding efforts over the years and this year is no different. This winter, there has been huge numbers of White-winged Scoters on the river. I've only been birding for 4 years, but I have never seen more than one or two White-winged Scoters along the Detroit river. This year, I've seen rafts of 20 ww-scoters in two or three different locations along the river! Long-tailed ducks are also extreme rarities along the Detroit river --- even though tens of thousands of these ducks are easily seen along the Sarnia River / Port Huron just one hour north of here.
|White winged Scoters --- record numbers?|
|Sleeping Oldsquaw in Olde Sandwich Towne --- Ultra Rare!|
I also attended a nature outing held by the Essex County Field Naturalists which was held last weekend. While touring the Black-oak Heritage Park in West Windsor, we toured the last remaining undeveloped shoreline in Windsor --- a small strip of land called Ojibway Shores [map]. Our group saw some of the more common birds that one would expect to find in the forest and along the river --- our main highlight was some Glaucous Gulls always a pleasure to see. It was surreal to watch these gulls in front of the Zug Island industrial complex which one sees when standing on the shores of Ojibway! (Side note about Ojibway Shores: The Windsor Port Authority owns this land and was about to bulldoze it to store aggregate for a new bridge crossing over the Detroit River. A few hundred people protested and the port authority backed down -They promised not to destroy that last remaining natural area along the water for "two years").
|My son and I walked up on this Eagle at Ojibway Shores on Family Day|
A couple more scoter rafts above. Can you find the Surf Scoter?