Tuesday, May 20, 2014

May 17-18 Birding: Pelee, Kopegaron Woods, and Oak Openings Metropark

Kopagaron Woods last Friday was pretty amazing. I had attempted to twitch a Scissor tailed Flycatcher in Wheatley, and figured I would stop by Kopagaron Woods. It was pretty amazing. There was a small group of warblers and migrants which were staying very low due to the cold temps that had moved in late last week. Right near the entrance to the forest path was amazing. Northern Waterthrush, Ovenbird, Canada Warbler were present with many Bay breasted Warblers, Chestnut sided, Magnolia, Indigo Bunting, Scarlet Tanagers all very close to the ground! Veery and Swainson's Thrushes were very present as well.

Female Blackpoll Warbler
The following day, I spend the morning at Point Pelee and upon arrival, I was able to see a Pacific Loon that Jean Iron had ontbirded just as I arrived at the park. She had it in her scope as I reached east beach! More Philadelphia Vireos were seen along east beach.  Some nice highlights as the afternoon progressed were: Northern Parulas at close range, Canada Warblers, Yellow breasted Chat and Ruby throated Hummingbird nectaring Wild Columbine Flowers!

Northern Parula right along Tilden's Woods footpath

Yellow breasted Chat - Perhaps on breeding territory? Lets hope! This guy was singing from a thicket making all kinds of weird noises... Trying to impress the ladies!

Hummingbird nectaring on Wild Columbine flowers

Some nice Thrush species were seen as well. On Saturday, Veery, Swainson's Thrush, Robins, Wood Thrush, Gray cheeked Thrush were all seen. In fact, I think all the Eastern Thrush Species were in the park with the exception of Bicknells! Along the Tilden Woods Footpath, I heard my first singing Wood Thrush for the season. It's song was amazing to hear. If you have a few minutes, and want an amazing read and description of the wood thrush, click here to read John James Audobon's account of this bird. You owe it to yourself!

Sunday, my family visited Toledo Zoo, but stopped by Oak Openings Metropark for a quick 20 minute walk. I hate rushed birding, but in that twenty minutes, I had seen:
Summer Tanager
Scarlet Tanager
Indigo Bunting
Eastern Bluebird
Lark Sparrow
Red headed Woodpecker - (seamingly lots - 4 seen along a 50m walk)
Eastern Kingbirds

Oak Openings is the Easternmost Stronghold for this beautiful western sparrow

I stopped by a small area withing the Oak Openings to look for the re-introduced Karner Blue butterfly. I spoke to a few women in the parking lot who informed me that the re-introduced Karner Blue is basically not "thriving" as their website suggests and that there is only one area which they might still be seen at, but it is off bounds to public, and hasn't been seen yet this year. Along the parking lot, Eastern tailed Blues and Dreamy Duskywings were visible along with Tufted Titmouse at close range.

Good birding!
Wild Lupine - Easily Seen at Oak Openings and the foodplant for the extirpated Karner Blue butterfly

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