Saturday, December 19, 2015

Vermilion Flycatcher in Wallaceburg?

Vermilion Flycatcher in Wallaceburg? What a wacky year its been for vagrants! I was torn on whether I should go out to Wallaceburg to see this amazing bird, but with reports coming in early this morning that it was still present, I went ahead and committed to the drive.  I wanted to go out to the Mitchel's Bay area to see Snowy Owls, but I didn't see any on the drive between Wallaceburg and Chatham. I got a chance to see Rick, JB & Ellen Smout at this location as well. The property owners were gracious in letting birders walk back to their pasture and it seems like this little bird was seen by mobs of birders.

This amazing bird is not a lifer as I've seen it in Florida a few years ago. It is mainly a bird from deep southwestern US and Mexico as shown on the range map below. To think that it strayed so far in the wrong direction during migration is almost unbelievable - but I guess first year males sometimes exhibit this directional dyslexia. It seems that although the weather is going to be mild for the next week or so, it seems like this beautiful little bird is probably doomed to perish due to cold weather and lack of food.

Image Source:

A friend of mine who sometimes commutes to Chatham told me a while ago about "Chatham Burger". He swore it was one of the best burgers he had ever had. I just happened to drive by on my way back to Windsor and figured I would support a local business. Amazing burgers! I would say its a great burger for a birder birding in the 'burg.

Good birding,


  1. Don't assume that the bird is going to perish due to cold weather and a lack of food. James L. Baillie used that excuse to collect the 1949 Toronto bird, only to find out that it was rolling in fat reserves. Such birds are a lot tougher than you might think!

  2. It is an amazing bird. Nice to have that one less than 10 minutes from (my) home! I believe this is only Ontario's 6th record!

  3. We were put four wheeling tonight in Huntsville Ontario and we saw a vermillion flycatcher a male and he was bright red with black. He was way back on our property. He stayed for a few minutes and flew away. I have never seen one up here before

  4. We saw a male vermillion flycatcher tonight while four wheeling on our property in Huntsville Ontario. He was very pretty bright red and black. I have never seen one before so we looked it up. I am assuming it's a rarity to see them this far north.



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