Muskoka Bird Board - Archived Reports from October - December 2004
 
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Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 31, 2004 at 03:42:13 PM by Ted Gardner

Just finished watching a flock of 30+
Bohemians fly back and forth from the tops of the maples to the berries in the mountain ash next door.Got a great look with the scope.
(120 meadow heights Bracebridge)

 

 

Algonquin Park CBC
Posted on December 31, 2004 at 10:03:39 AM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 30, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


Fifty-eight observers conducted the 31st annual Algonquin Provincial Park
CBC on Thursday, December 30. Conditions for observing birds were near
ideal, with mild temperatures and virtually no wind. However, deep snow
meant that snowshoes were required on this almost entirely off-road count.

As expected, the results were "average", with preliminary data showing a
total of 28 species (average is 28) and 4,674 individuals (average is
5,041).

Unusual Species:
Great Gray Owl (1, Sproule Lake portage)
American Robin (1, near Visitor Centre feeder)
Bohemian Waxwing (1, at Visitor Centre; NEW FOR COUNT)

Finches:
Pine Grosbeak (83)
Red Crossbill (1)
White-winged Crossbill (1,293)
Common Redpoll (304)
Evening Grosbeak (2)

Ron Tozer
Compiler
rtozer@vianet.on.ca

 

 

Great Gray Owls - Walker's Point area
Posted on December 31, 2004 at 09:54:55 AM by Barbara Taylor

Bob Bowles has forwarded this report from Rose Marie Gold:

I saw the article in The Muskokan (Dec. 2), requesting information about owl sightings in Muskoka. We were lucky enough to see our first owl on December 18, 2004 on the road into our cottage on Walker's Point, on Lake Muskoka. The bird had risen from the ground to perch on a tree near the road. When I told my neighbours about this they mentioned that there had been three more sightings on Walker's Point. I told them that I would report their information to you. Their sightings were on the 24th, 28th and one other time in December.(On the 28th the bird flew behind and over the head of my neighbour, frightening her with its wingspan, and the proximity of the turbulence generated by its flight.) I should mention that all sightings were during the day, and all occurred near Walker's Point Road with the exception of one near Campbell's landing.

 

 

GGO on Golden Beach Road
Posted on December 30, 2004 at 06:22:04 PM by Terry Whittam

The Golden Beach Road Bracebridge GGO put on a great show today between addresses 1120 aqnd 1130 from 2pm to 2:30pm. The GGO flew from tree to tree posing for pictures! All involved enjoyed the show! The GGO also seemed to enjoy watching us!

 

 

Northern Shrike at Kerr Park
Posted on December 30, 2004 at 05:18:22 PM by Doug Smith

A Northern Shrike landed on the top of the dying maple at the top of the sledding hill at Kerr Park in Bracebridge briefly this afternoon, at about 1 pm, then flew off over the tennis courts.

 

 

Gravenhurst-Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count...complete report
Posted on December 30, 2004 at 04:07:21 PM by Al Sinclair

A link to the 2004 Gravenhurst-Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count report has been posted on Muskoka Nature News. A complete species list can be accessed from a link in the report.

 

 

Re(1): Owl story - tonight between 6-7 p.m.
Posted on December 30, 2004 at 01:15:29 PM by Barbara Taylor

Just heard back from the NewVR. They plan to run the story tonight at some point between 6-7 p.m. They were still working on the story so it didn't make the noon show.

[This post has been modified by an administrator - a follow-up email from the NewVR says the story will air at 6:45 p.m. tonight, Dec. 30]

 

 

Great Gray Owl story on NewVR
Posted on December 29, 2004 at 10:00:06 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning Bob Bowles was out with the NewVR television crew doing a story on the Great Gray Owls. Bob says the story "will be on Guide to VRLand tomorrow, December 30th probably noon and 6:00 p.m."

I've emailed the NewVR to confirm the airing times - if I get further details I'll post an update.

 

 

Windermere Waxwings
Posted on December 29, 2004 at 05:09:27 PM by David Britton

A large (100+) flock of Bohemian Waxwings with at least 3 or 4 Cedar Waxwings mixed in was seen today along Dee Bank Rd. about 100m west of Victor Creasor Rd. (about 5 km east of the village of Windermere).

The birds are frequenting a low marshy area along the road where they appear to be feeding on winterberry. They have been in the area since at least December 25th.

 

 

Re(4): Snowy Owl, Bracebridge
Posted on December 31, 2004 at 08:43:02 AM by Grace Taylor

While watching the snowy owl yesterday the owner of the shop next to Yamaha reported that they had seen a large grey owl on the hill behind his shop. He was not there when we went to check, but worth a look if you are there, He said he doesn't mind folks using his driveway to look.

 

 

Re(3): Snowy Owl, Bracebridge
Posted on December 30, 2004 at 06:12:38 PM by Terry Whittam

The Snowy Owl continued to sit on the hydro pole opposite the Bracebridge Yamaha dealer on Robert Dollar drive today at 1:30PM. The Snowy seemed quite content to just watch as we photographed from all angles.

 

 

Re(2): Snowy Owl, Bracebridge
Posted on December 29, 2004 at 05:59:44 PM by Terry Whittam

Spotted the Snowy Owl in the field opposite Bracebridge Yamaha today between 11:30am to about 12noon and again at 2pm to 2:30pm. Mary Whittam (82 years young!) added this bird to her life list! Got some nice photos.

 

 

Re(1): Snowy Owl, Bracebridge
Posted on December 29, 2004 at 03:44:15 PM by Barbara Taylor

At 3 p.m. today the Snowy Owl was on the hydro pole opposite Bracebridge Yamaha. It took a short flight out behind the Yahama building and then circled back to the pole.

From Hwy. 11 take Hwy. 118 exit into Bracebridge. Turn west onto Robert Dollar Dr. at Leons Furniture.

 

 

Snowy & GG Owls, Bracebridge
Posted on December 28, 2004 at 03:29:45 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Today from about 11:30 to 12:30 I watched the snowy in the field off Robert Dollar Dr. It launched from its viewing point on a ridge in the field, swooped and picked up meadow voles, three times during that hour.

One great gray was seen perched on the post used for the clothes line at 1106 Golden Beach RD at 1 pm today.

 

 

Bird Board downtime - PLEASE READ
Posted on December 28, 2004 at 02:59:40 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Muskoka Bird Board was offline from 10 p.m. Dec. 26 until about 2 p.m. today, Dec 28. Due to the holiday season it took longer than usual for the hosting service to address a problem with their server.

If you haven't already done so, please bookmark (save to favourites list) the Bird Board back-up webpage. That webpage is the only way I can provide information to you about any problems with the Bird Board. During the period the Bird Board was offline, there was a Temporary Board available where you could continue to post sightings. That board is now closed to further posts. I have copied 4 posts from the Temporary Board here to the Bird Board.

 

 

Snow Buntings
Posted on December 27, 2004 at 08:27:36 PM by Terry Whittam

40 to 60 Snow Buntings on Muskoka Road 6 about 7 km east of Washago on the Coopers Falls Road. Almost directly across from the "twin churches" on Muskoka 6. Exact location 638083 Northing by 4960433 Easting. Look south. Good birding Terry.......

 

 

Great Gray Owl sighting
Posted on December 27, 2004 at 08:19:28 PM by Terry Whittam

My brother Bob Whittam and his wife Judy Whittam asked me to post this GGO report for them. They spotted a GGO on Triple Bay Road in Port McNicholl late yesterday afternoon. Bob spotted it again today Dec 27 on Triple Bay Road between Talbot Rd and Bayview. I'll ask Bob Bowles to assign a number to this GGO.

 

 

Great Gray Owl sightings
Posted on December 27, 2004 at 08:15:53 PM by Terry Whittam

GGO hunting from 1PM to 3:30PM today in Ramara township south of Casino Rama. First no luck on Casino Rama GGO #4. Looked extensively Along Ramara sideroad 25, Mara/Rama boundary road but no luck. Had better luck looking for GGO # 11. With the kind assistance of Joe Scallette and family out of Oakville who had already spotted GGO 11 we spotten this magnificent bird at 637270 northing 4937482 easting at 2:50pm. Take hwy 12 east from Orillia turn right onto Muley Point road. At the end of Muley point road turn left onto Conc. road 8. The road bends onto Sideroad 20. Just as the road bends onto sideroad 20 there is a small spur road heading due south accessing 2 homes. We took this little spur past address 3456 for another 20-30 meters to the GPS readings above. The GGO was hunting about 200M South East East SSE of the GPS readings. I'd put the exact location of GGO #11 at 637500 northing and 4937500 easting. Bring your scope! Best of Luck Terry

 

 

Gravenhurst-Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count - Summary
Posted on December 27, 2004 at 02:37:52 PM by Al Sinclair

The 25th Gravenhurst-Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count was conducted by 33 field participants on December 19, 2004. The day was extremely cold with a severe windchill warning, temperature -19C to -25C, cloudy to partly sunny, large lakes and fast water open, snow cover 50 cm.

Final Results:

Total Species: 33 (last 10 yr average, 35)
Total Individuals: 2567 (last 10 yr average, 2811)

New Species for count:
None

Infrequently observed species:
Snowy Owl (1)
Great Gray Owl (1)
Sharp-shinned Hawk(2)
Coopers Hawk (1)
Belted Kingfisher (1)
Bohemian Waxwing (7)
White-throated Sparrow (1)

All-time Highs:
Sharp-shinned Hawk (2)
Black-capped Chickadee (983)
Wild Turkey (28)

All-time Low:
None

Finches:
Pine Grosbeak (24)
Common Redpoll (269)
American Goldfinch (50)
Evening Grosbeak (10)

Al Sinclair
Compiler
Bracebridge

 

 

Re(1): Snowy Owl
Posted on December 29, 2004 at 09:56:24 AM by Grace Taylor

We went down and watched the Snowy Owl yesterday. Thanks for the tip. He stayed on a post near the road long enough for me to snap a photo, even though I knew it was not a "fill the frame"shot. When I got out to take the photo he went over to a building for a while, then settled in center field. Thanks again, what a beauty.

 

 

Snowy Owl
Posted on December 26, 2004 at 02:10:12 PM by Janice House

Saw the owl today about 12:30 on the pole in front of Muskoka Window and Door.

 

 

Re(1): Great Horned Owl
Posted on December 26, 2004 at 11:16:13 AM by Terry Whittam

Took a long look around the area this morning which I know well but no luck seeing the great horned. Suspect it may have been raiding feeders at the house just a little further SE from the river.

 

 

Great Horned Owl
Posted on December 25, 2004 at 05:14:31 PM by Janice House

Coming home from Stouffville today we saw 19 turkeys and when we turned onto hwy 11 from Washago there was the owl in a tree, south east side overlooking the river, not sure what the river is but the sign ahead said Coopers Falls. This was about 3:30. Merry Christmas.

 

 

Great Gray Owls
Posted on December 22, 2004 at 10:56:05 PM by Bob Bowles

As a result of media releases in early December asking for Great Gray Owl reports along with an excellent photograph thanks to Marc Johnson that he took in November in Hurst we have now received 55 reports of Great Gray Owls in Simcoe County. They are moving around and I have plotted their movements on a map and feel that there are 9 owls involved but more reports and owls are coming in every day.

I have also received some Muskoka reports. Lynn Taylor reports today - Just to let you know, my husband saw a GGO sitting on the phone wires on Golden Beach Rd. about a km in from #118 on Tues. Dec. 21 about 3:15pm...quite a sight!
Michael Barnes reports on Saturday, December 18 about 2 pm and again later in the day a possible Great Gray Owl on Ziska Road about 6 km outside of Bracebridge, ON in the direction of Port Carling. Mr. Sandy Long reported a Great Gray Owl on Sunday, December 5th, around 11:30 am at Windermere-Three Mile Lake area.

I have received several reports from Parry Sound as well over the last week so expect more owls in Muskoka this week.

 

 

Bohemian & Cedar Waxwings, Butter & Egg Rd.
Posted on December 21, 2004 at 09:02:18 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Today at 1:45 pm near Brooklands Farm on Butter & Egg Rd. 40 Bohemian waxwings and 10 cedar waxwings perched in snags in a wetland before Riley's farm off Hwy 118 West.

 

 

Snowy Owl, again
Posted on December 21, 2004 at 02:55:09 PM by Bob Burt

The Snowy Owl was still there again today at 2:30 pm in exactly the same place we observed it last Friday afternoon, ie. on a hydro pole opposite Bracebridge Yamaha , Robert Dollar Dr.

 

 

Golden-Crowned Kinglet, Pine Grosbeaks - Arrowhead
Posted on December 19, 2004 at 02:47:08 PM by Kip Daynard

While skiing at Arrowhead Provincal Park on Saturday around midday I found a Golden-Crowned Kinglet and a flock of about a dozen Pine Grosbeaks.

 

 

Brown Creeper
Posted on December 19, 2004 at 08:40:21 AM by Barbara Taylor

The big drop in temperature overnight must have brought this little guy to our suet feeder - we haven't seen any Brown Creepers in our yard since October. Nice timing though - today is the Gravenhurst/Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count. And the adult pair of cardinals even decided to show up on count day for a change!
(Bracebridge)

 

 

Carolina Wren - Bay Lake Rd.
Posted on December 18, 2004 at 10:14:23 PM by Kip Daynard

I was very surprised to see a Carolina Wren at my feeder today at about 3:15PM.
I am located about 8kms S. of Kearney, 25kms NE. of Huntsville and 19kms W. of the Algonquin Park boundary.

Directions:

From Huntsville take Hwy 11 north to Novar. Follow Hwy 592 north and turn right on Bay Lake Rd.

Kip Daynard
1380 Bay Lake Rd.
Emsdale, ON
(705) 636-9452

 

 

Re(1): Wild Turkeys
Posted on December 18, 2004 at 06:14:23 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

When I started looking for winter gulls a couple of weeks ago the attendant asked if I had seen the wild turkeys. They must be regular there. I know that there is a flock fed regularly at Corbett's Seed which probably backs onto the road near the entrance to the landfill.

 

 

Wild Turkeys
Posted on December 18, 2004 at 04:32:04 PM by Bob Healey

My wife, Margie, and I were heading to the landfill site at about 10:45 this morning when we came across 8 Turkeys slowly making the turn left off Rosewarne onto Taylor Rd. A van coming down Taylor into town had to stop to let them through to the other side. We got a very close look w/o binos.

 

 

Muskoka Owls...update...photos
Posted on December 18, 2004 at 08:30:56 AM by Al Sinclair

I posted the message below on Ontbirds, the email list for rare bird sightings in Ontario. Links to photos of these birds taken by Eleanor Kee Wellman are at the end of the message.

Two Great Gray Owls and a Snowy Owl were seen in Muskoka recently:

At 4:10 PM December 16, Eleanor Kee Wellman found a Great Gray near Port Carling on power lines on the north side of Hwy 118 West, just West of Brackenrig Road. It was not found today, Dec 17.

On Dec 17, Eleanor Kee Wellman and Barbara Taylor both were able to locate a Great Gray that was first seen by local residents last week. It has been seen between 1110 and 1140 Golden Beach Road, off Hwy 118 West, just west of Bracebridge. One resident reported seeing 2 together in the area but this has not been confirmed.

On December 17, Eleanor Kee Wellman located a Snowy Owl in the town of Bracebridge on Robert Dollar Drive. Employees at Bracebridge Yamaha reported that it has been seen occasionally for several days sitting on a hydro pole opposite their building. Robert Dollar Drive is at the south end of town off Muskoka Rd 118. Turn west at Leon's Furniture.

The last two owls are in the Gravenhurst- Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count circle and we are in count week!!! Hope they stay till count day, the 19th.

Bracebridge is 2 hrs drive north of Toronto on Hwy 11. Port Carling is 20 minutes drive west of Bracebridge on Hwy 118W.

Great Gray on Golden Beach Rd
Snowy at Bracebridge Yamaha

 

 

Snowy Owl at Bracebridge Yamaha...still there but different pole
Posted on December 18, 2004 at 03:55:57 PM by Al Sinclair

The Snowy was still there this afternoon at 2:30 but was on a pole in front of Rich Hill Candles.

 

 

Re(1): Snowy Owl at Bracebridge Yamaha
Posted on December 17, 2004 at 04:18:38 PM by Barbara Taylor

Just got back from seeing the Snowy Owl. At 3:45 p.m. was resting on top of tall hydro pole across road from the Yamaha dealership entrance at 31 EP Lee Dr.(the extension of Robert Dollar Dr.) Eleanor has heard that the owl has been in that area about a week.

From Hwy. 11 take Hwy. 118 exit into Bracebridge. Turn left at Leons.

 

 

Snowy Owl at Bracebridge Yamaha
Posted on December 17, 2004 at 03:17:13 PM by Barbara Taylor

Posting this on behalf of Eleanor Kee Wellman - currently a Snowy Owl on hydro pole near the Yamaha dealer on Robert Dollar Dr. (turn at Leons from Ecclestone Dr., Bracebridge)

 

 

Great Gray Owl - Golden Beach Rd. at 2:45 p.m.
Posted on December 17, 2004 at 03:13:25 PM by Barbara Taylor

We just got back from seeing a Great Gray Owl on Golden Beach Rd. We first saw it near #1126, then it moved along to an evergreen next to the driveway of #1140. This is probably the same owl mentioned in Janice's Dec. 14 post - thanks Janice!

Take 118W out of Bracebridge to Golden Beach Rd. Owl was hunting in first large open area on the right.

(photo of the owl)

 

 

Great gray Owl, Hwy 118 W
Posted on December 16, 2004 at 04:40:36 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Saw one great gray on power lines on North side of Hwy 118 West, just West of Brackenrig Road at 4:10 this afternoon.

 

 

Huntsville CBC
Posted on December 15, 2004 at 09:24:00 AM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 14, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


The 11th Huntsville Christmas Bird Count was conducted by 18 field
participants today (December 14). It was mixed sun and cloud, but
cold. The big lakes were all open.

Preliminary results showed:

Total Species: 34 (average, 37)
Total Individuals: 2,936 (average, 2,468)

New Species for count:
Greater Scaup (1)

Infrequently observed species:
Bald Eagle (1)
Ring-necked Pheasant (1)
American Robin (2)

All-time Highs:
Northern Goshawk (2)
Downy Woodpecker (36)
Hairy Woodpecker (62)
Blue Jay (340)
Common Raven (134)
Black-capped Chickadee (1075)

All-time Low:
Mourning Dove (26)

Finches:
Pine Grosbeak (98)
Purple Finch (1)
White-winged Crossbill (40)
Common Redpoll (116)
American Goldfinch (44)
Evening Grosbeak (31)

Ron Tozer
Compiler
Dwight, Ontario
rtozer@vianet.on.ca

 

 

Great Grey Owl
Posted on December 14, 2004 at 07:36:54 AM by Janice House

I spoke to a customer yesterday, he lives about 1 klm in on Golden Beach Rd, saw an owl Saturday and Sunday in the tree tops around his home.

 

 

Christmas Bird Counts...count period starts Dec 14
Posted on December 13, 2004 at 09:05:33 PM by Al Sinclair

The count period for Christmas Bird Counts starts tomorrow. The counts are held every year sometime between Dec 14 and Jan 5. This year the Gravenhurst-Bracebridge count will be on Sunday Dec. 19. Everyone is welcome to participate; no experience necessary. For more information about taking part, contact me at the email address on this message.

For more information on what Christmas Counts are all about and news on some recent population trends shown by the count data, click on this link to the 105th Christmas Bird Count Media Advisory.

There are several other counts in the area including Huntsville, Orillia, Minden, Burks Falls, Algonquin Park and Carden. The contacts for all Canadian counts can be found at the Bird Studies Canada website

 

 

Juvenile Bald Eagle, Torrance
Posted on December 13, 2004 at 01:33:35 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Today at noon I saw a juvenile bald eagle fly from SE to NE over the intersection of Southwood Road and Hwy 169 at Torrance.

About 15 wild turkeys were in a field near Pine Lake.

 

 

Birds of North America Life Histories - now online
Posted on December 11, 2004 at 02:51:54 PM by Barbara Taylor

Thought some of you might be interested in this…


There is now an online version of THE BIRDS OF NORTH AMERICA LIFE HISTORIES FOR THE 21ST CENTURY - A. Poole AND F. Gill, Editors. See the demos at http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/BNA/

There is a $40 U.S. annual subscription fee. But this also gives you access to a lot of photos and video and audio resources that are only available with the online version. However, a broadband internet connection is required to access the video and audio content.

Printed versions of the individual species accounts can still be ordered from Buteo Books (I don't know of any other supplier) at a cost of $7.50 U.S. each. So a complete set of the 716 species would cost over $5300.00 U.S. Wow! Go to the Buteo Books webpage for more info on the print version.

 

 

Pileated
Posted on December 11, 2004 at 10:44:57 AM by Mara Goodyear

We had a great view of a Pileated Woodpecker on our apple tree. We've also seen Chickadees, Blue Jays and Juncos. The Chickadees love the new bird feeder we made out of a coconut shell.

 

 

Iceland Gull at Bracebridge...Eleanor's photo
Posted on December 10, 2004 at 05:37:10 PM by Al Sinclair

 

This photo was taken Dec. 7 by Eleanor Kee Wellman at the Bracebridge Landfill.

 

 

Possible Eagle at Wood Lake
Posted on December 10, 2004 at 05:26:51 PM by Al Sinclair

On Wed. Dec 8, Joe Neveu reported seeing a large black bird much larger than a Raven and with the shape of an eagle sitting on the ice of Wood Lake. The following day he saw it again flying over the lake. From his description and the circumstances it sounds like an immature Bald Eagle or possibly, but less likely, a Golden Eagle. It may have been scavenging on a Loon or duck frozen in the newly formed ice, although Joe couldn't see anything else.

 

 

Re(1): Great Gray Owl irruption under way
Posted on December 10, 2004 at 12:17:45 PM by Barbara Taylor

No luck this morning - couldn't find any owls along Beaumont Dr., Stephens Bay Rd. or South Monck Dr. Did a quick check for reports in other areas where one might expect to see some owls in an irruption year - think I'll mosey on over to Minnesota!

"There are now over 500 reports of GREAT GRAY OWL sightings, and another 125 NORTHERN HAWK OWL sightings."
(Above quote from Duluth Birding Report for Thursday, December 2, 2004, sponsored by the Minnesota Ornithologists' Union). Some background about the Great Gray "invasion".

 

[This post has been modified by an administrator - Oops, that Duluth report has just been updated for Dec. 9th - now says "There have been reports of over 700 GREAT GRAY OWLS".]

 

 

Great Gray Owl irruption under way
Posted on December 9, 2004 at 08:40:02 PM by Al Sinclair

Great Gray Owls reports in Muskoka, 2004:
It looks like there may be another irruption of Great Gray Owls this year. See Bob Bowles' report in the Christmas edition of the Muskokan that came out last week. Recent reports of Great Grays from Muskoka are listed below. None of these sightings have been confirmed but the descriptions and circumstances are consistent with Great Gray Owls. If you see a large gray owl try to determine the colour of its eyes, yellow or dark brown, and take a photo.

Nov 26, South Monk Trail, Bracebridge, Gayle Carlyle
Nov 29 - Dec 2, Ragged Rapids Rd. (west of Bala), Kelly Clarke
Dec 3, Paignton House Rd. (north of Minett).
Dec 5, Windermere, Sandy Long

 

 

Re(1): More Redpolls
Posted on December 12, 2004 at 11:26:23 AM by Barbara Taylor

Just counted 32 Common Redpolls feeding on birch catkins in front of our house on Glendale Rd., Bracebridge.

 

 

Redpolls
Posted on December 9, 2004 at 04:45:14 PM by Barbara Taylor

About 25 Common Redpolls took a brief rest in our birch trees this afternoon, then flew off to the south. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Snow Buntings east of Bracebridge
Posted on December 9, 2004 at 11:33:48 AM by Al Sinclair

Yesterday afternoon, Dec 8, a flock of about 30 Snow Buntings flew over our house 8 km east of Bracebridge. They were heading west toward town.

 

 

More White-winged Crossbills
Posted on December 13, 2004 at 02:20:23 PM by Kip Daynard

Today I had about 10 White-winged Crossbills in the top of a Hemlock at the end of my driveway.

 

 

White-winged Crossbills - Bay Lake Rd.
Posted on December 9, 2004 at 10:38:10 AM by Kip Daynard

About a half dozen White-winged Crossbills flew overhead this morning in undulating fashion giving "tyik-tyik" flight calls.

The birds were seen at the junction of Bay Lake Rd. and King siderd. which is 15 min. east of Novar and about 25kms NE of Huntsville.

 

 

Re(1): Glaucous & Iceland Gulls, Bracebridge Landfill
Posted on December 15, 2004 at 09:19:57 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 14, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


Today I had good flight looks at three glaucous gulls and one Iceland gull
at the Bracebridge Landfill. The glaucous were 1st year, second year and
adult. The Iceland is a first year. There are several great black-backed
gulls and lots of ravens as well.

Bracebridge Landfill is East off Hwy 11 at the Taylor Road Exit. Turn left
at the second road on the left and proceed a short distance to the first
driveway on the right. Go over the weigh scale and tell the attendant that
you are looking for winter gulls. He will tell you how to get to the top
area. The gulls could be sitting in several areas or flying. The landfill
site is open Saturday and part of Sunday.

Eleanor Kee Wellman
keewell@sympatico.ca

 

 

Winter gulls, Bracebridge Dump
Posted on December 7, 2004 at 04:15:44 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

This afternoon I found 3 glaucous, 1 Iceland and 5+ great black-backed gulls at the Bracebridge dump.

 

 

Juncos
Posted on December 7, 2004 at 12:31:07 PM by Barbara Taylor

Yesterday afternoon a small flock of Dark-eyed Juncos visited our feeders along with one American Tree Sparrow. Haven't seen any juncos since early November.

(Bracebridge)

 

 

Birds
Posted on December 7, 2004 at 12:13:13 PM by mary willmott

Since Saturday there has been 15 to 20 Cedar Waxwings feeding on red and blue (Virginia Creeper) berries in the swamp on Beaumaris Rd, just up from our house 1130 Beaumaris Rd. Also had an American Tree Sparrow. Wild Turkeys Mallards Many Gold Finches at our feeders Had three female Buffleheads fishing near the ice.

 

 

Otters in action
Posted on December 5, 2004 at 09:39:06 PM by bob Burton

After the Christmas parade,we passed by the Bass Rock apts. on River road in BB.Near the far shore of the river were two otters doing what otters do best.Besides some frollicking,they were successful at catching their early supper for a shore lunch.

 

 

Cardinal
Posted on December 5, 2004 at 01:25:40 PM by Virginia Pray

We have had 2 female Cardinals at our feeder this past week. No male as yet. We are on Bailey St. in Port Carling.Also 2 Pine Siskins on Saturday.

 

 

Northern Shrike, Falkenberg Rd
Posted on December 5, 2004 at 11:03:23 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Yesterday I did a tour around Falkenberg Rd and Beatrice Town Line to see If I could find any owls. No luck but did find a shrike sitting on the power lines of 1819 Falkenberg Rd. This is the house where a Northern hawk owl spent the winter in 2001.

 

 

Re(3): Birds
Posted on December 10, 2004 at 05:23:07 PM by Barbara Taylor

Hurrah!!!

The cardinal pair showed up at our feeder tonight at dusk. Here's hoping they'll stick around for the Bracebridge/Gravenhurst Christmas Bird Count on Dec. 19th. Please report any sightings for that date either here on the Bird Board or send me an email at muskoka_birder@hotmail.com

 

 

Re(2): Birds
Posted on December 6, 2004 at 04:59:24 PM by Ted Gardner

We live @ the corner of meadow heights and brian rd....have had a pair of cardinals @ the feeders going on two full years...just in yesterday...as well
2 pairs of Hairy woodpeckers 1 pair Downeys and both red and white breasted nusthatches very regular... as well as the usual suspects...had our first pileated @ the suet last winter only a couple of times, but he can be heard regularly.

 

 

Re(1): Birds
Posted on December 4, 2004 at 01:45:12 PM by Barbara Taylor

We had a few Goldfinch visit our feeder but they didn't stick around. No Redpolls yet.

We've had a pair of RB and also WB nuthatches at our suet feeder along with Hairy and Downy Woodpeckers. And for the first time, a Pileated Woodpecker has found our suet, which is attached to a White Pine tree.

At least eight Blue Jays are regular customers, ten Mourning Doves, and many chickadees too. The eight Cardinals we had in the late summer/fall have all disappeared. We haven't seen any at our feeder for about a month now. Sometimes we hear or see a few near the corner of Brian Rd. and Meadow Heights Dr.

(Bracebridge)

 

 

Birds
Posted on December 3, 2004 at 01:24:52 PM by Mary Willmott

We had our first Common Redpolls (two) today mixed in with many Goldfinchs and a few Pine Siskins . Also a Common Merganser briefly in the Bay.

 

 

Re(1): Red-bellied woodpecker
Posted on December 3, 2004 at 10:14:02 PM by alex mills

Just wondering if it is in Muskoka or Parry Sound?

 

 

Red-bellied woodpecker
Posted on December 2, 2004 at 09:44:04 AM by Gerry Lannan

Rbw coming to feeder on Bay Lake Rd-east of Novar,for the past 3 wks

 

 

Loons
Posted on December 1, 2004 at 01:49:52 AM by jim maguire

Saturday November 27, common loons calling on Sparrow Lake

 

 

Common Redpoll, Pine Grosbeaks
Posted on November 30, 2004 at 01:58:07 PM by Kip Daynard

The first Common Redpoll of the season visited our feeder this morning. Late last week there were small numbers of Pine Grosbeaks along Bay Lake Rd.

We also still have the following waterbirds here on Bay Lake:

Hooded Merganser (pair)
Bufflehead (x3)
Common Goldeneye (male)

 

 

Great Gray & Rough-legged...not found today
Posted on November 29, 2004 at 02:19:56 PM by Al Sinclair

This morning I looked for the Great Gray Owl that was reported on South Monk Trail last week. Not found. The location was beside the snowmobile bridge on the north section of the trail. This is about 1 km west of Bracebridge Municipal Cemetery. I also drove around and checked the fields along South Monk drive. It was likely on the move as most Great Grays seen this time of year have not settled in for the winter yet.
I also looked for the Rough-legged Hawk on Stephens Bay Rd., no luck.

 

 

Re(2): direct link to the report
Posted on November 29, 2004 at 02:46:05 PM by Cheryl

This is a very informative report. The colour-coded charts at the end are very helpful.

[This post has been edited by an administrator - I've posted a message as requested Cheryl - no problem...]

 

 

Re(1): direct link to the report
Posted on November 27, 2004 at 10:27:42 AM by Barbara Taylor

Thanks Margo.

Here's a direct link to the report which is a pdf file format (Acrobat reader).

 

 

Conservation Status Ontario Landbirds
Posted on November 27, 2004 at 10:15:08 AM by Margo Holt

Bird Studies Canada has just produced an excellent report entitled " Monitoring the State of Ontario's Migratory Landbirds". There is lots of information on which species are increasing & decreasing. I highly recommend this report to anyone interested in Ontario birds. The 20 page report can be downloaded at www.bsc-eoc.org

 

 

Great grey owl
Posted on November 26, 2004 at 04:54:26 PM by Gayle Carlyle

Friday, Nov. 26 approx. 2:45
The dogs and I were hiking along the South Monck Trail north of BB and I got a very good look at a Great grey owl. Actually I stood underneath it and it seemed more concerned about the dogs than me so I was able to see it up close.
I invited it to come over to our house and eat up the mice trying to get into our basement but it didn't seem very interested in my offer.

 

 

Eleanor's feeder bird - photo
Posted on November 26, 2004 at 01:30:31 PM by Barbara Taylor

Eleanor Kee Wellman photographed this female Wild Turkey earlier today at a feeder on her second story deck in Bala. Eleanor says the bird "has been coming in with 2 other females for a couple of weeks now. There was one that often flew up to the feeder last winter and have to assume it is the same one. She doesn't stay long and they are all very skittish."

 

 

Pine Grosbeak, Brown Creeper
Posted on November 25, 2004 at 06:37:56 PM by Mark McAnally

On my walk around my back forty in Huntsville this morning, one Pine Grosbeak flew over and I watched a Brown Creeper from about 10 feet slowly work his way up a tree.

 

 

Re(1): male pheasant
Posted on November 25, 2004 at 07:44:21 PM by Barbara Taylor

Most likely they are escapees. While it is possible for Ring-necked Pheasants to survive one of our winters, I don't think they would be able to establish a wild breeding population this far north. But if you have a surviving pair, they might decide to try. : )

The Ontario MNR has been carrying out a pheasant re-introduction program in parts of southern Ontario (even though the birds are non-native). See Terry Sprague's Nature Stuff article and a Hunt Ontario article.

There are also private Hunters and Anglers Associations with re-introduction programs - see article about St. Joseph Island (east of Sault Ste. Marie). An excerpt from that article states: "Cold weather does not cause pheasant mortality unless accompanied by high winds. Cover close to ground (eg. stubble of corn or cereal crops) may assist early winter survival. Pheasant range is limited by snowfall; generally areas where annual snowfall is greater than 150 cm (60 inches) are considered unsuitable for year-round survival of birds. St. Joseph Island receives more than this critical level of snowfall except during exceptionally mild winters."

 

 

male pheasant
Posted on November 25, 2004 at 11:52:20 AM by Nancy Thompson

Quite a surprise this morning when there was a male pheasant under our bird feeder.
We had a female for two winters but first I have seen a male here. (Bent River)
Would they have escaped or is it possible they will survive to breed in the wild?

 

 

Kingfisher
Posted on November 22, 2004 at 12:20:14 PM by Bob Burt

At Henry Rd. marsh this morning there were four Otters and a Kingfisher.

 

 

Black-backed Woodpecker
Posted on November 22, 2004 at 07:12:17 AM by Mark McAnally

Watched a female Black-backed Woodpecker go up and down an old Spruce tree for about ten minutes. Textbook.

 

 

Re(2): Great Gray Owl in Algonquin
Posted on November 24, 2004 at 10:21:42 AM by Harold Stiver

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 23, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


A Great Gray Owl was seen directly behind the KM. 38 sign late this
afternoon. It was gradually working its way west along the treeline.

My thanks to Ron Tozer for his updates on this species in Algonquin

Harold Stiver
Paris, Canada

 

 

Re(1): Another Great Gray Owl in Algonquin Park
Posted on November 22, 2004 at 07:21:10 PM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 22, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


A Great Gray Owl was observed in an open bog along Highway 60 this morning
(November 22), just inside the East Boundary of Algonquin Park. However, the
owl was dive-bombed by a Common Raven soon after it was located, and
subsequently moved into deeper cover and out of sight.

As noted by Dick Tafel in North Bay, the Great Grays in Algonquin so far
this fall are not being observed again after the initial sighting. The owls
appear to be on the move, and also may not be finding much to eat here,
since deer mouse (and perhaps other small mammal) numbers seem to be low.

Directions:
Algonquin Park is three hours north of Toronto, via Highways 400, 11 and 60.
Follow the signs, which start in Toronto on Highway 400. From Ottawa, take
Highway 17 to Renfrew, then follow Highway 60 to the park. Kilometre markers
on Highway 60 in the park go from the West Gate (km 0) to the East Gate (km
56). Permits and information are available daily at both gates throughout
the winter. The Visitor Centre (km 43) is open weekends, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
from now until January 30, and until 5 p.m. after that. Birders are welcome
to observe the Visitor Centre feeders and ask staff about recent sightings
during the week, as well.

Ron Tozer
Dwight, Ontario

 

 

Two more Great Gray Owls in Algonquin Park
Posted on November 20, 2004 at 03:01:59 PM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 20, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


The third and fourth Great Gray Owls of this fall in Algonquin Park were
observed during the last two days. On November 18 (Thursday), a Great Gray
was discovered and later photographed at km 36.7 on Highway 60, at the
Centennial Ridges Trail road. That bird was not seen yesterday (November
19), but another Great Gray Owl was reported at km 18 on the Cameron Lake
Road (closed to public travel) on Friday.

It appears that a significant flight into southern Ontario of these owls of
the northern boreal forest may be underway.

Directions:
Algonquin Park is three hours north of Toronto, via Highways 400, 11 and 60.
Follow the signs, which start in Toronto on Highway 400. From Ottawa, take
Highway 17 to Renfrew, then follow Highway 60 to the park. Kilometre markers
on Highway 60 in the park go from the West Gate (km 0) to the East Gate (km
56). Permits and information are available daily at both gates throughout
the winter. The Visitor Centre (km 43) is open weekends, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
from now until January 30, and until 5 p.m. after that. Birders are welcome
to observe the Visitor Centre feeders and ask staff about recent sightings
during the week, as well.

Ron Tozer
Dwight, Ontario

 

 

Re(1): ...again this morning
Posted on November 21, 2004 at 12:53:53 PM by Barbara Taylor

We saw the Rough-legged Hawk again this morning at 11 a.m. It was hovering and soaring over the eastern edge of the field on the east side of Stephens Bay Rd. Then it pounced on something and spent ten full minutes on the ground, barely visible in the grass. If we hadn't seen it land, we never would have known it was there, so if you go looking for the hawk, patience may be in order. Finally it flew up to a large tree stump near the south-east edge of the field and continued to feed on its prey. Whatever it caught looked larger than a chipmunk, but too far away to tell - perhaps a rat or small rabbit. The hawk was still on the stump feeding at 11:20 a.m.

A quick tour of South Monck Dr., and the fields at Butter & Egg Rd. and Falkenburg Rd. didn't turn up any Great Gray Owls...wishful thinking.

 

P.S. - The Rough-legged Hawk on Stephens Bay Rd. is a light-phase hawk and looks similar to this photo I found on the internet.

 

 

Rough-legged Hawk - still there
Posted on November 19, 2004 at 01:41:48 PM by Barbara Taylor

The hawk was hunting in the field to the east side of Stephens Bay Rd. at 1:00 p.m. today. It was hovering briefly at the far eastern edge of the field where the land rises up and there are a few small evergreen trees. It then soared around and around the field and eventually crossed the road to the western field. It was soaring quite high in the sky today, unlike the last time we saw it when it stayed closer to the ground, hovering frequently as it faced into a strong wind.

This makes it a full week that the hawk has been at that location.
Previous post about the hawk.

 

 

Brant Goose
Posted on November 18, 2004 at 08:52:21 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Over the weekend Janice Enright received a Brant's goose from the Huntsville Humane Society. The only information she was given was that it was found on a road in the Huntsville area. It appears that it was hit by a car.

 

 

Hungry town visitors
Posted on November 18, 2004 at 02:13:30 PM by Barbara Taylor

We saw tracks in the snow last February and recently noticed a few branches nipped off shrubs, but at lunchtime today we finally caught them red-handed...     photo      (Glendale Rd., Bracebridge)

 

 

canvasback
Posted on November 18, 2004 at 10:36:35 AM by Gerry Lannan

We have a male canvasback out in front of our house on the Magnetewan r. about 2km ne from Kearney.1st time we've seen one here.

 

 

Re(1): Algonquin Birds
Posted on November 16, 2004 at 10:28:47 AM by Bruce Ripley

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 15, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


While quickly passing through Algonquin Park with my parents on Sunday, the
following birds were observed at Spruce Bog Boardwalk, the Visitor Centre
and Wolf Howl Pond.

1 male SPRUCE GROUSE, 20 WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILLS, 3 PINE GROSBEAKS, 1 BOREAL
CHICKADEE and 4 GRAY JAYS.

Good Birding
Bruce Ripley

Algonquin Park is located on Hwy. 60, east of Huntsville.

Km. 43 Visitor Centre feeders. There are two feeders; one below the
observation deck and one north of the main building.

Km. 42.5 Spruce Bog Boardwalk

Arowhon Road km. 15.4
Take Arowhon road north off of Hwy 60 for about 5 km. Where the
road branches in three (old rail line) at the large Arowhon Resort sign,
take the right
branch and drive about 100m along the old rail bed until you reach the chain
across the road and park there. The rail bed can then be walked. After
about 15 minutes it joins up with the upper part of the Mizzy Lake trail
and passes by Wolf Howl Pond and West Rose Lake. Return on same route
from West Rose Lake.

 

 

Algonquin Park Birds
Posted on November 15, 2004 at 07:06:17 PM by Bruce Di Labio

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 15, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Hi Everyone
Spent part of the weekend birding Algonquin Park along Hwy. 60. Beautiful weather and a good
selection of birds. Highlights included: 4 Spruce Grouse (2m, 2f) along Spruce Bog Trail, 2
Black-backed Woodpecker (1m) Old Airfield, (1f) Wolf Howl Pond, 11 Gray Jay, various locations,
and 5 Boreal Chickadee, various locations. Winter finches were scattered around with
White-winged Crossbill being the most common with 80+, mainly along Wolf Howl Pond/WestRose Lake
trail. A few small flocks of Pine Grosbeak, Evening Grosbeak and Common Redpoll were also
observed. A late Red-necked Grebe was on Lake Opeongo on Nov.13 with 3 Common Loon.

Good Birding
Bruce

Directions:From Ottawa take Hwy.17 to Renfrew, then follow Hwy. 60 to Algonquin Park.

The Old Airfield is located along the Mew Lake Campground access road, park at a small parking
lot on the left at the beginning of the Old Railway Bike Trail and walk around the airfield.

Spruce Bog Trail is located along Hwy. 60 at km 42.5

The Wolf Howl Pond & West Rose Lake area can be accessed by driving 4.8km up Arowhon Rd and
then turning right onto an abandoned railway and follow 0.6km to chain gate, park well to the
side and walk in 1.5km to Wolf Howl and another 1km to West Rose.
_______________________________________________
*To join or leave ONTBIRDS visit http://mailman.hwcn.org/mailman/listinfo/ontbirds

 

 

Rough-legged Hawk
Posted on November 14, 2004 at 04:52:07 PM by Barbara Taylor

Between 3:30 and 4 p.m. today we watched a Rough-legged Hawk hunting in the fields on both sides of Stephens Bay Rd. just south of Beaumont Dr., Bracebridge. When we arrived the hawk was sitting on a fence post at the north edge of the eastern field, but soon began its hunt. It was hovering frequently over the south edge of the eastern field, and went in for the kill three times. We left after it switched over to the western field and it was hard to watch as we were looking into the sun.

It might be worthwhile trying to find this hawk since we originally saw it Friday, Nov. 12 at 3:15 p.m. sitting in a tree in the middle of the western field. Apparently the hunting must be good enough to keep the bird hanging around that location.

We searched through a large flock of Canada Geese at Annie Williams park but didn't see any Snow Geese with them.

 

 

Re(1): Moth in flight today - photo
Posted on November 12, 2004 at 01:50:03 PM by Al Sinclair

The photo appears to be of a Bruce Spanworm, Operophtera bruceata. In Muskoka, they are the last species to emerge and are flying now. The adults are weak flyers and can be found during the day and at dusk in November after most of the moth eating birds have departed. Their larva eats all kinds of trees and usually are not abundant enough to be called a pest.

 

 

Moth in flight today - photo
Posted on November 12, 2004 at 12:25:09 PM by Barbara Taylor

The moth landed to sun itself for a brief time but then flew off. Isn't this rather late for moths to be flying around? Temperature last night was down to -10C.  photo

 

 

Another Great Gray Owl in Algonquin Park
Posted on November 9, 2004 at 05:19:48 PM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 9, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

The second Great Gray Owl of this fall in Algonquin Park was observed in the
Park Interior near Hogan Lake on November 6 by wolf researchers. It is
likely that others will be encountered in southern Ontario soon.

Pine Grosbeak, Purple Finch, White-winged Crossbill, Common Redpoll, Pine
Siskin, American Goldfinch, and Evening Grosbeak have been observed in small
numbers along Highway 60 during the last ten days, but none of these are
numerous.

A Marten has started visiting a feeder at the Visitor Centre at km 43 on
Highway 60, to eat mixed seed.

Directions:
Algonquin Park is three hours north of Toronto, via Highways 400, 11 and 60.
Follow the signs, which start in Toronto on Highway 400.

Ron Tozer
Naturalist, Algonquin Park (retired)

_______________________________________________
*To join or leave ONTBIRDS visit http://mailman.hwcn.org/mailman/listinfo/ontbirds

 

 

Re(1): Evening Grosbeaks, Bala
Posted on November 10, 2004 at 10:23:04 AM by alex mills

I had an evening grosbeak the same day in Barrie.

 

 

Evening Grosbeaks, Bala
Posted on November 9, 2004 at 01:37:41 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Five or six evening grosbeaks dropped in for the day yesterday. No sign of them today.

 

 

Re(2): question re: tagged bluejay
Posted on November 9, 2004 at 01:36:05 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I had one coming into feeder at Lake Joseph that would arrive in the early spring and late fall. I wondered, also, where it could have been banded. Of course it could have been banded at any station doing migration banding from further north to anywhere it might go through on the way south.

 

 

Re(3): question re: tagged bluejay
Posted on November 10, 2004 at 09:51:57 AM by Barbara Taylor

If the "tag" is just a regular silver coloured leg band then I don't think it is any special monitoring program - probably just a jay that got caught up at one of the many spring/fall bird banding locations. Here's the website for Prince Edward Point (has a small pic of a Blue Jay being banded): http://www.out-there.com/birdband.htm

And here's a website all about Bird Banding: http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/bbl/

 

 

Re(2): question re: tagged bluejay
Posted on November 9, 2004 at 09:26:56 PM by Challis

As I said in my postscript, it was a silver-coloured, metal tag, on its left ankle. I don't know anything about tag types, so I wouldn't know what I was looking for, unfortunately.

 

 

Re(1): question re: tagged bluejay
Posted on November 9, 2004 at 10:27:01 AM by Al Sinclair

Can you describe the tag ... size, type and location?

 

 

question re: tagged bluejay
Posted on November 8, 2004 at 11:08:42 PM by Challis & Carlyle

I can't remember what morning it was, but a tagged blue jay showed up at our feeder last week.
Does anyone know who has been tagging the jays and whether they're being monitored because of their susceptibility to West Nile virus?

P.S. The tag was silver.

 

 

snowgeese, white-throated sparrow
Posted on November 7, 2004 at 09:55:01 PM by Challis & Carlyle

We spotted the five snow geese again; in flight over the Bracebridge lagoons on Saturday afternoon, along with close to 100 Canada geese. We have also had a white-throated sparrow on our lawn for the last few days.

 

 

Re(1): Snow Buntings
Posted on November 25, 2004 at 11:49:50 AM by Nancy

Saw a flock of 20 or so snow buntings on our driveway Novemebr 24th - just before the snow started.
Bent River

 

 

Snow Buntings
Posted on November 7, 2004 at 03:01:36 PM by Stew Boyd

Cathy and i saw 5 Snow Buntings at the McNabb Soccer fields. Birds were feeding in short weeds at the west end of the McNabb soccer fields on Sunday, November 7/04 at 3:00 PM.

 

 

Re(1): Gray Jay
Posted on November 7, 2004 at 03:03:24 PM by Stew Boyd

Is he sure it wasn't a shrike? I had a northern shrike in my backyard yesterday.

 

 

Gray Jay
Posted on November 7, 2004 at 09:32:59 AM by Janice House

Geoff saw a gray jay this morning about 8:30 in our back yard. I haven't seen the bird yet but will keep my eyes open. (Doe Lake Rd.)

 

 

Adventure Sightings
Posted on November 6, 2004 at 02:18:14 PM by The Goodyears

We went on a little adventure and ended up on the Beatrice Town Line. Saw a Rough Grouse and Ravens with something in their beaks. It was very windy so every thing was hiding, didn't see any hawks.

 

 

Re(1): Common Redpoll near Bracebridge
Posted on November 6, 2004 at 03:36:43 PM by Barbara Taylor

We spotted 4 Redpolls this afternoon on Covered Bridge Trail, Bracebridge - first we've seen this season.

 

 

Common Redpoll near Bracebridge
Posted on November 6, 2004 at 09:41:39 AM by Al Sinclair

We had a single Common Redpoll in a flock of about 30 Goldfinches and Pine Siskins that were at our feeders this morning.

 

 

eastern towhee
Posted on November 5, 2004 at 03:48:23 PM by jim griffin

have had a female eastern towhee foraging around my feeders in Port Sydney, Nov. 4 & 5, heard her call as well today.

 

 

Pine Siskins, Bala
Posted on November 3, 2004 at 04:57:46 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

About a dozen pine siskins dropped in for a small snack about 9:30 am today. Later on 3 were seen on the tube feeder a couple of times.

I am down to one junco occasionally from 2 dozen over the last 3 weeks or so.

 

 

Snow Geese
Posted on November 3, 2004 at 02:16:48 PM by Barbara Taylor

At lunchtime today there were five Snow Geese and many Canada Geese on the Muskoka River by Annie Williams Park, Bracebridge. Unfortunately a boat went by scaring the birds into flight. Eventually after much circling around, the Snow Geese followed a small flock of Canada Geese upriver towards Bracebridge Bay. Since there were 5 birds, perhaps these are the same Snow Geese that have been seen in recent weeks at the Muskoka Highlands driving range.

 

 

Great Gray Owl in Algonquin Park
Posted on November 1, 2004 at 07:08:34 PM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 1, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


Doug Tozer observed a Great Gray Owl hunting in a beaver meadow near Pretty
Lake, at km 56.5 on the Barron Canyon Road (Grand Lake-Lake Travers Road)
today (November 1). This road is on the East Side of Algonquin Park.

While it is possible that this owl is a member of the rare permanent
resident Great Gray Owl population in Algonquin, it is probably more likely
that it is part of the southward movement of this species that appears to be
developing farther north in Ontario.

Directions:
Algonquin Park is three hours north of Toronto, via Highways 400, 11 and 60.
Follow the signs, which start in Toronto on Highway 400. The East Side of
Algonquin Park is accessible via the Barron Canyon Road (Grand Lake-Lake
Travers road) from the Pembroke area. The road is open to the public as far
as Lake Travers. See an Ontario road map for specific route.

Ron Tozer
Dwight, Ontario
rtozer@vianet.on.ca
________________________________________
*To join or leave ONTBIRDS visit http://mailman.hwcn.org/mailman/listinfo/ontbirds

 

 

Hardy Lake
Posted on November 1, 2004 at 02:28:12 PM by Barbara Taylor

Following the short trail counter-clockwise from the parking lot there are two large ponds before you reach Hardy Lake. Around noon today in the first pond there were a few Ring-necked Ducks, Mallards, and Bufflehead. In the second pond there were two very playful Otters. Only a few birds along the trail - four Ravens, Blue Jays, Chickadees, Brown Creeper, and Evening Grosbeak.

The Hardy Lake trails parking lot is beside Hwy. 169, between Gravenhurst and Bala, about 1 km. west of Walkers Point Rd.

 

 

Rough-legged Hawk near Port Sydney
Posted on November 1, 2004 at 01:31:36 PM by Kip Daynard

On Saturday (Oct 30) a juvenile light-phase Rough-legged Hawk flew directly over me while I was travelling southbound on Hwy 11 just north of the Port Sydney exit.

Four Pine Siskins visited my feeders again this morning.

 

 

evg grosbeaks
Posted on October 31, 2004 at 11:13:51 PM by John Challis

We had a large flock of grosbeaks stop behind our yard (off Fraserburg Road) early in the morning last week -- Thursday, I believe. They haven't returned, and in fact part of the flock never really landed that morning either. Just passing through.
Also noticed a large flock of either buffleheads or goldeneyes offshore from Taboo Resort last Friday (Oct. 29)

 

 

Gadwall-Sparrow Lake
Posted on October 31, 2004 at 08:37:41 PM by sylvia purdon & jim maguire

Pr of Gadwall in a quiet inlet at Sparrow Lake by the 'green bridge' at Pun Gish E Moo, off Wenona Lodge Road.

 

 

scoter
Posted on October 31, 2004 at 03:08:57 PM by mary willmott

We spotted a White- Winged Scoter in our bay this am. As seen in Sibley they migrate through our area.

 

 

Lapland Longspurs &Horned Larks
Posted on October 30, 2004 at 07:30:19 PM by sylvia purdon&jim maguire

Lapland Longspur seen today at the former site of Wenona Lodge at Wenona Lodge Rd, Sparrow Lake. Birds are feeding in the overgrowth now rich in small seeds from a variety of weeds, and much solidago. Horned Larks observed by Jim Thursday but not seen today. Longspur is in winter plumage.

 

 

Pine Siskins, Red-tailed Hawk - Bay Lake
Posted on October 28, 2004 at 10:32:39 AM by Kip Daynard

This morning a flock of about a dozen Pine Siskins visited my yard on Bay Lake about 25kms NE of Huntsville.

Yesterday, a first-year Red-Tailed Hawk flew over my house.

This week also, a pair of Hooded Mergansers have been regulars on our lake and a small flock of about 6 Common Goldeneye stayed around one day only.

 

 

Algonquin Park: Early fall update
Posted on October 27, 2004 at 05:15:04 PM by Ron Tozer

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Oct. 27, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


During the last ten days in Algonquin Park, migrant grebes and diving ducks
have been reported in small numbers on the larger lakes along Highway 60 and
on the East Side, especially in early morning. These include Red-necked
Grebe, Horned Grebe, Brant (flock of 300 on October 14, and flocks of 30,
75, and 150 on October 26), Ring-necked Duck, Lesser Scaup, White-winged
Scoter, Long-tailed Duck, Common Goldeneye and Red-breasted Merganser.

New latest fall dates for Algonquin were established for Cooper's Hawk
(October 24, Radiant Lake) and Red-shouldered Hawk (October 23, Radiant
Lake). Both species are rarely observed here as migrants in fall, due to the
scarcity of these hawks and of observers.

Ruffed Grouse numbers are low, probably reflecting poor reproduction due to
cold and wet spring conditions.

Lake Travers, on the East Side, produced five shorebird species on October
23/24: Semipalmated Plover (new late fall date for Algonquin, October 23),
Greater Yellowlegs, Pectoral Sandpiper, Dunlin, and Wilson's Snipe. Migrant
shorebirds are scarce here due to lack of suitable feeding habitat, so most
sightings are noteworthy.

Birders seeking Algonquin's boreal specialties (Spruce Grouse, Black-backed
Woodpecker, Gray Jay, and Boreal Chickadee) have had recent success along
the Wolf Howl Pond/West Rose Lake section of Mizzy Lake Trail (accessible
via Arowhon Road), at Spruce Bog Boardwalk, and along Opeongo Road.

Single Bohemian Waxwings were reported on October 26 (juvenile) and October
27 (adult) at the Visitor Centre, km 43 on Highway 60. The remnants of an
abundant crop of Wild Raisin, and some Winterberry, may sustain these birds,
perhaps the vanguard of a movement by this species into southern Ontario.
American Robins are still common in the park due to the berry crop.

The Old Airfield (access via Mew Lake Campground entrance at km 30 on
Highway 60) had Northern Shrike, Horned Lark, American Pipit, Lapland
Longspur and Snow Bunting on October 26.

Finally, winter finches remain very scarce in Algonquin Park. Singles and
small flocks of Purple Finch, Pine Siskin and American Goldfinch are being
detected, usually flying over and perhaps leaving (?). There have been only
three reports of White-winged Crossbill here this month, involving just one
or two birds in each case. However, a few small flocks of Evening Grosbeaks
are starting to appear. This species was unreported in Algonquin from early
August to mid October, but now seems to be returning (from where?). There
have been no recent reports of other finches here.

As always, please report your sightings to me if you do some birding in
Algonquin Park. We would very much like to add your reports to our Algonquin
Visitor Centre database. Birders are scarce here, so we really appreciate
hearing from you.


Directions:
Algonquin Park is three hours north of Toronto, via Highways 400, 11 and 60.
Follow the signs, which start in Toronto on Highway 400. When you buy your
permit at the gate, get an information tabloid for directions to locations
mentioned along Highway 60. The East Side of Algonquin Park is accessible
via the Barron Canyon Road (Grand Lake-Lake Travers road) from the Pembroke
area. See an Ontario road map for specific route.

The Algonquin Visitor Centre (km 43 on Highway 60) is open daily (10 a.m. to
5 p.m.) until October 31, and weekends from November 6 to December 19 (10
a.m. to 4 p.m.). Visitor Centre staff can often provide the latest bird
sightings information, and access to view bird feeders when the centre is
closed to the public.

Ron Tozer
Naturalist, Algonquin Park (retired)
rtozer@vianet.on.ca

______________________________________
*To join or leave ONTBIRDS visit http://mailman.hwcn.org/mailman/listinfo/ontbirds

ONTBIRDS Guidelines may be viewed at http://www.ofo.ca/ontbirdsguide.htm

 

 

Snow Geese / Goldeneyes
Posted on October 27, 2004 at 12:55:15 PM by Barbara Taylor

At 10:30 this morning there were 5 Snow Geese feeding amidst flock of Canada Geese at Muskoka Highlands Driving Range on South Monck Dr. off Hwy 118 west of Bracebridge. (same location where reported last week - we hadn't been able to find them then)

At least 25 Common Goldeneyes on Lake Muskoka near mouth of Hoc Roc River by Taboo, Muskoka Beach Rd., Gravenhurst.

 

 

Fork-tailed flycatcher in Thunder Bay
Posted on October 26, 2004 at 10:40:10 AM by Al Johnston

Some of you may remember a post I made back in late April about a Fork-tailed flycatcher I observed here in Whitchurch-Stouffville. Nick Escott has sighted the same species in Thunder Bay. Check out http://www.ofo.ca/photos/forktailed/ and keep an eye out for this bird as it migrates south, Al

 

 

Henry Rd. marsh
Posted on October 25, 2004 at 05:23:36 PM by Barbara Taylor

This afternoon there was a Yellowlegs (Greater?) at the back edge of the marsh. Many Hooded Mergansers, a few Wood Ducks, Mallards, Bufflehead, and 5 Great Blue Herons. Also a Northern Goshawk a bit west of the marsh and lots of Golden-crowned Kinglets.

Didn't see any beavers at the marsh but they must be around. They've already plugged up one of the overflow pipes with mud. The other overflow pipe closest to the new wooden bridge is working well though, with large volume of water moving through to other side of roadway.

 

 

Fisher
Posted on October 24, 2004 at 09:55:20 AM by sylvia purdon & jim maguire

A regular sighting, several times a week, is a fisher crossing the Wenona Lodge Road from one side of the marsh to the other.

 

 

Re(1): Gulls
Posted on October 26, 2004 at 09:59:11 AM by Barbara Taylor

If the field has been plowed then that would bring various insects, grubs and worms to the surface for the gulls to feast on. Or the field could just be a relatively safe "roosting site" for the gulls before they head over for their daily feed at a nearby garbage dump. Don't know if there is a dump in that area though...

 

 

Gulls
Posted on October 23, 2004 at 08:58:47 PM by Janice House

Coming home from Toronto today via Major MacKenzie, my brother showed me a farm field at the 10th line just south of Stouffville which has thousands of gulls. He goes by the field to work everyday and says the only time they are not around is when the snow is on the ground. The birds fly around in a big whorling cloud, and he can't understand why they stay. No crop seems to grow there, and surely with so many birds food would disappear quickly. Does anyone have an explanation?

 

 

Trumpeter Swans-Sparrow Lake
Posted on October 22, 2004 at 01:04:50 PM by sylvia purdon

Thursday October 20: A group of five Trumpeter Swans quietly feeding in a nearby bay in Sparrow Lake: 2 Adults and 3 juveniles.

 

 

Snow Geese Bracebridge
Posted on October 20, 2004 at 02:28:20 PM by Al Sinclair

Wilf Yusek found 5 juv. Snow Gesse with Canadas on the Driving Range on South Monk Drive off Hwy 118W west of Bracebridge today. Still there at 2pm.  photo

 

 

ponds
Posted on October 19, 2004 at 11:38:38 AM by Gerald Willmott

My friend Don Graham and I spent a rainy and windy Sunday afternoon birding. Throughout Muskoka we saw Bluebirds at the south end of the Dordey Rd. and Rusty BBs on the Ziska road.

At the ponds, in addition to what Barbara saw on the 16th, we saw Blue Wing Teal, Northern Shoveler, female Hoodies, and Pintails. Also we flushed and watched a Sora Rail fly. Fox Sparrows were mixed in with young and old White Crowned and Song Sparrows.

 

 

Re(1): Ducks et al, On the Move
Posted on October 19, 2004 at 08:30:33 AM by stylvia purdon

Add group of Wood Ducks to the report.

s/

 

 

Ducks et al, On the Move
Posted on October 19, 2004 at 08:29:07 AM by sylvia purdon

On Sparrow Lake, Monday October 18:

Hooded Merganser
Mallard
Bufflehead

Finches: Flock of 30+ Dark eyed Junco

 

 

Wigeons, Coots, Ring-necked Ducks
Posted on October 16, 2004 at 12:48:32 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there were several Ring-necked Ducks in cell 1 and some Wood Ducks. Found five American Wigeon and two American Coots in cell 3 along with many Mallards, and Green-winged Teal. Bufflehead and Lesser Scaup in cell 2. Only a few Bufflehead in cell 4.

Had our first Pine Siskins of the season in our backyard in Bracebridge this morning.

 

 

Algonquin PP - 3 Black-backed Woodpeckers, LaplandLongspur
Posted on October 12, 2004 at 04:33:30 PM by Frank Pinilla

*This report originated on ONTBIRDS (Oct. 12, 2004) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.


Hi All,
I went up to the Hwy 60 corridor yesterday (Monday October 11), only arriving around 1pm,
nothing really uncommon but may be of interest to others.

At the airfield no Le Conte's Sparrows but did have 27 Horned Lark, 1 Lapland Longspur, 2
Savannah Sparrows, and 25+ Black Ducks, also had a Northern Goshawk circling over the ridge to
the south of the airfield, seemed to be making it's way west (migrating?).

At Spruce Bog I had a low flying Sharp-shinned Hawk (afternoon search for Spruce Grouse, no
luck) and at Bat Lake (walking the trail backwards, just to the lake) I had a Boreal Chickadee.

Behind the sanitation station, I called in a female Black-backed Woodpecker (decided to hoot a
couple of times and she immediately came in).

At Mizzy Lake Trail, I had both male & female BBWO at West Rose Lake, also called in a Hairy,
Pileated and a Barred Owl was calling (around 6pm) from the north (?) side of West Rose, also
here at dusk were 6 Rusty Blackbirds and 6 Hooded Mergansers at Wolf Howl Pond.

Cheers & good birding,
Frank

DIRECTIONS:
Hwy 11 at Huntsville, exit Hwy 60 east, from here 45 km to the West Gate of the Park.

Old Airfield is located along the Mew Lake Campground access road, park at a small parking lot
on the left at the beginning of the Old Railway Bike Trail and walk around the airfield.

Spruce Bog Trail is at km 42.5

Sanitation Station is at km 35.6 and there is a gravel parking area behind the sanitation
station, bird was spotted just beyond the wooden gate.

Wolf Howl Pond & West Rose Lake are on the Mizzy Lake Trail and can be accessed by driving 4.8km
up Arowhon Rd and then turning right onto an abandoned railway and follow 0.6km to chain gate,
park well to the side and walk in 1.5km to Wolf Howl and another 1km to West Rose.

_____________________________________
*ONTBIRDS mailing list:
http://mailman.hwcn.org/mailman/listinfo/ontbirds

 

 

Red-headed Woodpecker
Posted on October 10, 2004 at 07:56:29 AM by Janice House

He's back. Thought he had moved on but he is still on the clothesline pole this morning. I saw him checking out the bluebird box on the pole which has had the hole chewed up by other woodpeckers so maybe he slept there? Also we had a bluebird on the hydro lines yesterday across from our driveway. Happy Thanksgiving to all.

 

 

Red-Headed Woodpecker
Posted on October 9, 2004 at 02:20:17 PM by Janice House

We have an immature red-headed woodpecker on the clothesline pole in our back yard. Geoff managed to get 3 or 4 pictures. This morning about 11 I saw a dead hawk on hwy 11 between Kirk Line and Taylor road, looked like a Cooper's hawk.

 

 

Reptiles at Risk
Posted on October 8, 2004 at 12:25:38 PM by Barbara Taylor

Last evening Glenda Clayton gave a very interesting presentation at the MFN meeting about Reptiles at Risk. For those who missed the meeting, there is a lot of information available on the Greater Georgian Bay Reptile Awareness Program website.

Specific details about each turtle, snake, and skink can be found at http://www.gbayreptiles.com/risk.htm

The teaching aids section has information that can be downloaded as pdf files to be viewed with Acrobat Reader. Or if you have Microsoft's Power Point, there is a wonderful slide show that can be downloaded.

 

 

Bracebridge Ponds/Henry marsh
Posted on October 8, 2004 at 11:50:20 AM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there were good numbers of ducks. Many Mallards, Lesser Scaup, Wood Ducks, Blue-winged Teal, Green-winged Teal, Hooded Mergansers, two female Northern Pintail (cell 1), a couple American Black Ducks, and a female Bufflehead.

At the Henry Rd. marsh there were a few Wood Ducks, Hooded Mergansers, and Mallards, a Double-crested Cormorant, and a Great Blue Heron. Three Otters - we've seen them a few times now so looks like they are going to stick around.

 

 

Re(1): Ads - fixed
Posted on October 7, 2004 at 05:17:11 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Bird Board is provided through Boards2Go, a free message board hosting service - it's free because they receive revenue from advertisers. Sometimes an advertiser will change ad content without alerting Boards2Go. Once Boards2Go was aware of a problem with certain ads, they acted right away and removed them.

The current "Ads by Goooooogle" banner ad at the top of the Bird Board will try to provide advertising that is related to topics posted on the message board.

 

 

Ads on the Board
Posted on October 6, 2004 at 09:00:45 PM by Barbara Taylor

I have contacted the Boards2Go hosting service about recent inappropriate ads appearing on the message board. They assure me that they are looking into the matter and any "offending" ads will be removed as soon as possible. I have no control over the placement or content of the advertising as this is a free message board service.

 

 

Re(1): rusty blackbirds
Posted on October 5, 2004 at 12:02:10 PM by Bob Burt

Today, Oct.5th at about 11:00, we saw a flock of 25-30 rusty blackbirds at the Henry Road marsh in Bracebridge

 

 

rusty blackbirds
Posted on October 3, 2004 at 04:05:17 PM by Gerry Lannan

Yesterday,Oct.2 about 1oopm, I saw 18 rusty blackbirds on a small mud flat in front of the house.2k N of Kearney on Magnetewan R.

 

 

Re(1): Dung Fungus
Posted on October 2, 2004 at 11:24:43 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Is this one of the edible ones? NOT by me!

 

 

Re(2): Dung Fungus
Posted on November 1, 2004 at 05:31:56 PM by Al Sinclair

This is the only dung fungus I have seen on Moose or Deer dung.

 

 

Re(1): Dung Fungus
Posted on October 31, 2004 at 08:13:36 PM by nancy ironside

Although there are a lot of dung fungi, I have never found anything but S semiglobata on moose dung. Have you ever seen anything else?

 

 

Dung Fungus
Posted on October 2, 2004 at 06:33:31 PM by Al Sinclair

The photo below was taken on September 10 near Gibson Lake. It is a dung mushroom called Stopharia semiglobata. The dung in this case is Moose but it also grows on deer dung. You might ask, how does the fungus find new dung to grow on? The spores are blown by the wind onto vegetation which is then eaten by moose or deer. The spores pass through the animal's intestinal tract and begins growing a new fungus plant soon after it is deposited on the ground. Months later it eventially fruits and disperses more spores.   photo

 

 

Edible Mushrooms
Posted on October 2, 2004 at 06:20:45 PM by Al Sinclair

On September 16 we were on a mushroom foray in Muskoka with friends and found some edible species plentiful enough to collect for dinner. Our hostess Leslie Terry prepared a wild mushroom salad with goat cheese and a pasta with mushrooms main course complimented by lots of Peter's homemade wine. It was a unique dining experience! The species we collected are shown in the picture below. In our taste test before the meal, the Painted Bolete was voted the best, second place was the Gypsy which had nice texture but less flavour. BEWARE: It is dangerous to eat wild mushrooms unless you know how to identify the edible ones and the poisonous look-alikes. We also found several poisonous species on our foray including the Destroying Angel and the False Chanterelle.     photo

 

 

Bird Board Update
Posted on October 1, 2004 at 09:51:14 AM by Barbara Taylor

All reports from July through September are now available as a single file in the Archived Reports. Thanks to everyone for all your posts.

A reminder to bookmark (add to your favourites list) the back-up webpage. All recently posted reports are copied and stored there. In the event of any major problems with the Bird Board hosting service, important notices will also be posted there.

If you're new to the Bird Board you might want to review the Hints and Tips section on the Guidelines webpage. Several features of the Bird Board are explained there.

I try to monitor the Bird Board on a regular basis. If you want to bring something to my attention, just send me an email and I'll get back to you as soon as possible.