Saturday, May 30, 2015

April Waterbirds

I'm continuing to try and catch up various sightings and photos from the last month and a half, so expect more short themed posts in the near future.

Although most of our migratory birds come through in May, waterfowl are earlier migrants, generally reaching peak numbers in mid to late March. Things were a bit later this year with the very cold spring, and so I have a a few photos from April to share.

Harlequin Ducks show up on Lake Ontario each winter in very small numbers. Unlike most diving ducks, they are often seen standing on shore, allowing excellent views. Harlequins prefer very turbulent water - mountain streams in summer and rocky coastlines in winter.

The strangest sighting on a trip to Long Point was this dead Common Loon wedged in the middle of a big tree. You can see it towards the top in the picture below. I don't have any good explanation for this!

On the way back from that trip to Long Point we stopped at the Townsend Sewage Lagoons where Todd spotted this male Eurasian Wigeon (the bird with a grey body and reddish head in the middle). Not a common bird in our area so the fact that I saw three different birds this spring is fantastic.

Although immature birds can be quite tame, it's rare that I can get close to an adult Great Blue Heron. This bird however was quite cooperative. The black plumes and white crown indicate an adult bird.

1 comment:

  1. I once saw a Ring-billed Gull wedged similarly in a tree. I looked closer and saw a long fishing line caught up in the bird, so it somehow hung itself. Probably not the case here, but just a thought!