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Olive-sided Flycatcher - Algonquin PP (Mizzy Lake Trail)
Posted on June 28, 2011 at 08:34:13 AM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Robert Maciver on ONTBIRDS (June 27, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Hello all,
On the off chance that someone else is planning to hike the Mizzy Lake Trail
in search of Olive-sided Flycatcher, this is just a note of advice that you
might want to hike the trail in reverse. The only OSFL I observed when
I hiked the trail last Saturday was at the boardwalk on Dizzy Lake in the
final kilometre of the 11 km loop. Actually, Hannah Maciver heard it
first, and then we both saw it.

Just thought I would try and save you all about 9 km of hiking and about
1,000 mosquito bites. No other Algonquin specialties were encountered on our
hike.

Regards,
Robert Maciver

Directions: Mizzy Lake Trail is at kilometre 15 from the west gate of
Algonquin Provincial Park on Hwy 60. Trail maps are available at the
trailhead.

 

 

Re(1): Bracebridge Clay-colored
Posted on July 1, 2011 at 05:00:23 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning we found two Clay-colored Sparrows in that field and both were singing. No signs they had any young. We did see White-throated Sparrow and Song Sparrow adults carrying food though.

Directions:
The Clay-colored Sparrows are in the field west of the main trail going north of the Meadow Heights Dr. loop. On the map, you can see where a section of trail heads south-west for a short ways and deadends...that is where the field is. There are several young evergreens in the field and that is where the sparrows are. It takes about 20-25 minutes to hike over to the field from Meadow Heights Dr. The trail begins with a steep descent down into the Beaver Creek ravine and back up the other side...other than that, it is an easy walk.
Trail Map: http://muskokatrailscouncil.com/mtc_maps/br_south_monck.pdf

Or alternatively, you can hike over to the field from the end of the road in the Covered Bridge subdivision...see Al Sinclair's post.

 

 

Bracebridge Clay-colored video
Posted on June 24, 2011 at 09:27:55 PM by Al Sinclair

Video at Bracebridge June 19, 2011.
Clay-colored Video

 

 

Raymond Birds
Posted on June 24, 2011 at 01:44:33 PM by janice house

I spoke with Tim Mason today; whip poor wills have been calling, the black billed cuckoos are back, baltimore orioles nesting at his home and he has seen a pair of sandhill cranes recently.

 

 

Re(1): Any Whip-poor-wills in central Parry Sound?
Posted on July 6, 2011 at 10:42:53 AM by lauragilmour

Hello,
My mother has a cottage on Horn Lake. At the end of June they heard a Whip-poor-will near the South end of the lake.
Hope this info helps a little.
Laura Gilmour

 

 

Any Whip-poor-wills in central Parry Sound?
Posted on June 24, 2011 at 10:30:32 AM by Alex Mills

I am working with a group on Whip-poor-wills this spring-summer, and I am wondering if anyone has heard any in the Dunchurch, Magnetawn, Burk's Falls, Sundridge area this month?

 

 

Robin fledglings
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 02:55:12 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning a male adult Robin was tending to five fledglings on our front lawn. They were learning how to find bugs and worms and seemed to enjoy the ripening berries on our Red Elderberry. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Trail map with Clay-colored location
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 05:05:37 PM by Al Sinclair

Here is another map that shows where the Clay-colored (CCSP) are located in relation to the trail. They are in a part of the field that has grown up with many small trees, marked on the map with a red circle. You would need to leave the trail to hear them. Clay-colored map 1

 

 

Bobolinks
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 12:40:02 PM by jim griffin

yesterday I walked some of the Covered Bridge/South Monck trail; In the field section from covered bridge over to monck rd. I was treated to quite a show by numerous bobolinks; males singing and flying all over the place, chasing any females that dared to rise out of the grass.
I did not hear or see any clay coloured sparrows. I did see a northern harrier gliding low over the fields on the west side of monck rd.

 

 

Re(1): Blackburnian Warbler
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 09:44:57 AM by GayleCarlyle

We have had quite a few blackburnians on our road, Green River Drive Washago, this year. Wonderful to hear them; even better to see them which isn't often; they are way up in the tall pines most of the time.

 

 

Blackburnian Warbler
Posted on June 20, 2011 at 06:05:35 PM by janice house

at the cottage yesterday I heard the warbler in the big oak tree in front of the porch, there was also one in the tree last summer, Skeleton Lake Rd 3

 

 

Re(4): Chimney Swifts ...Rosseau and Bracebridge
Posted on June 24, 2011 at 01:36:22 PM by janice house

last night at 6:40 2 swifts were flying around Bracebridge near the show

 

 

Re(3): Chimney Swifts ...Rosseau and Bracebridge
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 01:38:55 PM by Barbara Taylor

They used to nest in hollow trees in the old growth forests which the Europeans chopped down. According to the following MNR webpage, the Chimney Swift population actually increased due to all the new chimney nesting sites.
http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/stdprodconsume/groups/lr/@mnr/@species/documents/document/276680.pdf

 

 

Re(2): Chimney Swifts ...Rosseau and Bracebridge
Posted on June 21, 2011 at 01:36:49 PM by J. Gardner

Where did Chimney Swifts nest before the European chimneys became part of the landscape?

 

 

Re(1): Chimney Swifts ...Rosseau and Bracebridge
Posted on June 21, 2011 at 10:25:35 AM by GayleCarlyle

We saw 2 chimney swifts flying over "downtown" Washago last week in the early evening. Not sure where they would be nesting, maybe the old hotel.

 

 

Chimney Swifts ...Rosseau and Bracebridge
Posted on June 19, 2011 at 06:47:18 PM by Al Sinclair

Seen today
4 at Rosseau 11:30am flying over town, Cardwell Rd at 141.
7 at Bracebridge 1:30pm flying over downtown.

 

 

Clay-colored Sparrows Bracebridge...update
Posted on June 19, 2011 at 06:42:09 PM by Al Sinclair

Checked the location today by hiking in from Covered Bridge Trail. 3 birds seen all adults, one singing, 2 others staying close together. None in juvenile plumage so breeding not confirmed. Anyone who is in there should look for young ones.
GPS lat/long 45.052460° -79.348552°  map

 

 

Re(1): Sandhill Crane
Posted on June 19, 2011 at 06:34:39 PM by Al Sinclair

Sounds correct. We are getting more sightings in Muskoka in summer every year. Breeding has been confirmed at a few locations. Most locations are remote like Lancelot, shy birds usually. I posted a map of that road, can you describe where it was, west of the railway tracks? How far? 911 number? Near that big farm on the north side?  map

 

 

Sandhill Crane
Posted on June 18, 2011 at 10:05:41 PM by LisaGregory

My husband and I were ATVing on South Lancelot Road this evening (June18) and we ran across a very large brownish bird, which seemed larger than a blue heron, standing in the middle of the road. It flew along the road ahead of us, then landed, and then flew again. We met a local woman who lives on the south side of the road and she said she thought it was a Sandhill Crane and that a pair of them are regularly at the pond on her property. I don't see what other bird it could possibly be, because it was so large.

 

 

Nests near Parry Sound
Posted on June 18, 2011 at 11:59:23 AM by BonnieDeVillers

My husband and I went to Point au Baril Parry Sound for the l5 to the l6 of June. On the 401 about 30kms before you arrive to Parry Sound there are two nests in the dead trees above the marsh on the right side of the road The nests look like they are made from straw and reeds. Their are about two birds in each nest,they look fairly big. We did not stop to observe.
Does anyone know about these nests and what kind of birds they are?

 

 

Re(5): Chimney Swifts...photo of building
Posted on June 19, 2011 at 06:14:36 PM by Al Sinclair

OK Thanks. Below is a photo of the building from Google. Hope to get there soon.

 

 

Re(4): Chimney Swifts...Huntsvillle
Posted on June 18, 2011 at 09:42:39 PM by Dawn Sherman

They go into the chimney at approx. 9:15 pm. It is a small chimney on the grey building just up from the post office at 16 Main Street. The You-nique and Treble Clef shops are below. It's a great view of them as it is only two stories high and you can view from a bit higher up on the hill. A great opportunity for video. The chimney is much smaller than the Empire chimney and they often hover a bit before entering the chimney.

 

 

Re(3): Chimney Swifts...Huntsvillle
Posted on June 18, 2011 at 09:01:12 PM by Al Sinclair

Is this the new fake chimney on town hall? About what time? I watched that chimney until 9:30, saw none entering. I would like to try again, take video.

 

 

Re(2): Chimney Swifts...Huntsvillle
Posted on June 18, 2011 at 08:56:37 PM by dawn Sherman

There has been approx. 40 birds (38-42 counted) entering the chimney for the past few nights.

 

 

Re(1): Chimney Swifts...Huntsvillle
Posted on June 18, 2011 at 06:28:45 PM by jim griffin

You may have seen more action if you had gone to 16 main st west, up the hill from the empire site. Dawn has seen this in-flight contact a couple of times and Ron Tozer offered some literature that suggested that while not common, in-flight attempts at copulation have been observed.

 

 

Chimney Swifts...Huntsvillle
Posted on June 17, 2011 at 07:45:33 PM by Al Sinclair

We were in Huntsville Thursday night (June 16). Chimney Swifts appeared over downtown at 8:45 and were last seen at 9:30.

My observations:
-Most seen at one time = 5, one group of 3 and one of 2(may have been more as there was no way to tell if there was several groups or just 2).

-They flew wide circles out of sight and back to the corner behind city hall where they were the lowest(West Street and High Street).

-They went out in 3 directions, Hunters Bay, the downtown bridge, and the High school.

-The group of 2 appeared to be sparring in mid-air at one point.

-Last birds seen at 9:30, 4 far out circling clockwise south-east towards the high school.

 

 

Re(1): Pheobe Nest (Picture)
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 01:50:03 PM by Barbara Taylor

From my experience with Eastern Phoebes, they tend to all fledge at the same time, but I recall reading an article that said they may fledge over a few days (on average 16-18 days from hatch date). If a predator had attacked the nest, I would think all the young would have been taken or the nest may even have been knocked down. Perhaps a couple of them accidentally fell out prematurely. Did you see or hear any young near the nestsite?

 

 

Pheobe Nest (Picture)
Posted on June 17, 2011 at 08:43:31 AM by lauragilmour

Hello Everyone,
This photo was taken just a few days ago. This is a platform I built for the Pheobe when she was trying to build a nest on top of my light fixture. As of last night there were only 3 left in the nest, would the others have fledged? Any knowledge anyone has about breeding biology for this species would be great. Thanks! Laura  photo

 

 

Black-billed cuckoo
Posted on June 15, 2011 at 08:21:18 AM by CatMacLean

Heard a cuckoo this am in Huntsville. Haven't heard one in a couple of years.

 

 

Re(2): Bluebirds at Last!
Posted on June 22, 2011 at 07:52:49 AM by Carol Wagg

After checking our box out the entire evening, they left at dark and have not been back. I was hoping they were going to raise their second brood of the season here.

 

 

Re(1): Bluebirds at Last!
Posted on June 20, 2011 at 06:01:40 PM by janice house

Hi Carol: We also have a nesting pair, I watched the box last night while supper was cooking and both parents were bringing little caterpillars to the babies, this morning I checked the box when they were absent and we have at least 4 babies, my guess is 5 to 6 days old (1206 Doe Lake Rd)

 

 

Bluebirds at Last!
Posted on June 13, 2011 at 07:00:46 PM by Carol Wagg

When we moved to our new location two years ago, we put up boxes, which tree swallows have used, but have never even seen a bluebird. Moments ago I spotted a male at one house, and shortly after, there was a female. They are indeed bluebirds of happiness. I hope they stay. 1557 Doe Lake Road, Gravenhurst, overlooking Doe Lake

 

 

Re(1): SnappingTurtle
Posted on June 14, 2011 at 01:07:56 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Hi Janice, I took this shot just east of Coopers Falls south of your location 2 weeks ago. This big old guy/gal was walking along the Coopers Falls road next to the Black river.
Cheers Terry
Large Snapper

 

 

Snapping Turtle
Posted on June 11, 2011 at 07:35:30 PM by janice house

I started out on a dog walk after supper and noticed a snapping turtle in the gravel by the bridge (near the old Dinsmore Sheep Farm), took Oreo home pronto and went back with my camera and a walking stick in case the beasty needed some prompting. After many photos and a movie I took a walk towards hwy 11 and the Turtle Crossing sign is missing....  (Gravenhurst)

 

 

Indigo Bunting
Posted on June 11, 2011 at 12:41:44 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning we finally saw our first Indigo Bunting of the year. He was singing from a dead tree along the pipeline near the south-west corner of cell 4 at the Bracebridge Ponds.

P.S. - the Wellington St. bridge across the Muskoka River is back in operation. The construction has been completed a week earlier than expected...hurrah!

 

 

Algonquin Provincial Park Odonate Count
Posted on June 10, 2011 at 09:22:28 AM by Peter Mills

Hello Fellow Dragon and Damsel Hunters,

This year's Algonquin Park Odonate Count is taking place on July 7th, the day following the Butterfly Count. Colin Jones, the usual count compiler/ringmaster, is away at this point this summer, so I have stepped in to take over the task.

For those of you new to Insect Counts, the day's event will consist of dividing the group's participants into smaller groups, each of which will be assigned an area of a large circle that covers much of the area around Highway 60, the most accessible part of the Park. Within this ‘sub-area’ of the count-circle, you and your group members will be tasked with sampling the number of species AND the number of individuals of each species seen in your area. ID's can be made merely by seeing certain species (those that are distinctive enough to allow on-the-wing-identification), or by capture via net and in-hand identification.

On the morning of the 7th, we will meet in the Visitor's Centre board room downstairs. Though normally off-limits to the public and for employees only, you will find that the Service Entrance (adjacent to the Main Public Entrance, up a small driveway) will be open, and there will be signage to direct you downstairs to the meeting place. We will meet here at 9:00 AM. After a quick briefing by me, some final groupings, and a time to answer any questions you may have, we will split up and head into our assigned areas, returning to the Visitor Centre board room for 4:30 PM, at which time we will tally our results and share our findings. It is at this point that any noteworthy, new-to-the-count, or difficult-to-identify species are likely to be present in envelopes for all to see and deliberate over. Otherwise, all dragons and damsels caught over the day will be released, alive, where they were captured after being identified.

You will need a vehicle pass for your vehicle if you are bringing one. These can be picked up at THE VISITOR CENTRE (you will be given a free courtesy pass for the day's event).

If you are interested in being a part of this year's Dragonfly and Damselfly Count you can contact me by email at peter.b.mills@hotmail.com ,or (preferably) by phone at the Algonquin Visitor Centre (613-637-2828)and asking for me by name. I simply need to know your name and whether or not there are other participants who are coming with you, and with whom you would like to be grouped for the day.

This count offers a great experience to see Algonquin, and a chance for those interested in Dragons and Damsels to broaden their Odonate-repertoire. We often have both Jewelwings in the Park's many creeks, a plethora of Bluet species from marshy shorelines, many Spreadwings in the wetlands that abound in the count circle, some early Darners, a good variety of Clubtails, Rusty Snaketails, Spiketails, Emeralds, Skimmers, and the twilit-portions of the day after the count typically produce the dusk-flying Stygian Shadowdragon and Vesper Bluets. If you don't feel you are a Dragonfly/Damselfly expert do not worry! There are always many beginners at each count; we like to have you along, and we will ensure you are with a friendly and knowledgeable partner who is familiar with this group of insects and the Park as well.

That's all for now and please contact me if you have questions,

Peter Mills
Park Naturalist

 

 

Columbia Silkmoth...more sightings
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 09:32:34 PM by Al Sinclair

There has been more sightings of our rarest silkmoth. We now have 4 reported since Monday. 1 here Monday, 1 Baysville Tuesday, 1 at Home Depot Bracebridge Wednesday, 1 here Wednesday (not the same one seen Monday).

A friend of Wilf Yusek collected the one at Home Depot from a shrub in the garden centre and took it to Wilf for identification. Wilf sent me a photo to confirm it. (Too bad you missed that one Ted)

 

 

Re(1): Moth ID...Al ?
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 09:35:36 PM by Al Sinclair

Right, Polyphemus. Had two here this morning. You missed the Columbia though, a guy took it to Wilf Wed. morning.

 

 

Re(1): Moth ID...
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 05:31:18 PM by Barbara Taylor

Polyphemus Moth
See http://www3.islandtelecom.com/~oehlkew/zpolmoth.htm
Also Al Sinclair's page (scroll down to #7757): http://www.moths.castillejalabs.com/page4/page4.html

Here's an interesting website that has photos of all the lifecycle stages of the Polyphemus Moth, including cocoons and caterpillars: http://www.wormspit.com/polyphemus.htm

 

 

Moth ID...Al ?
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 05:03:56 PM by tedthevideoman

Home Depot is on the moth map again!
http://tinypic.com/r/14mxw0o/7
(Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(2): young Canada Goose
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 09:52:16 AM by edieov

Thanks Jim and Al for your input.

 

 

Re(1): young Canada Goose
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 08:44:53 AM by jim griffin

maybe the answer should be "let it be": nature is hard hearted some times especially when it come to survival rates of young of the year. If you take such a bird to a Rehab location, you should be prepared to put some money on the table to help pay for your concern. Rehabbers are inundated with young that have been scooped up by our concern, but rehab is generally meant to cover man caused injury or interference. If there is no evidence of man caused interference then let it be or you become that interference. Harsh, maybe, but it needs to be said.

 

 

Re(1): young Canada Goose
Posted on June 8, 2011 at 03:20:02 PM by Al Sinclair

Closest to you:
Aspen Valley Wildlife Sanctuary
1116 Crawford St RR 1
Rosseau, ON P0C 1J0
(705) 732-6368
I would call for advice first.

 

 

young Canada Goose
Posted on June 8, 2011 at 09:56:28 AM by edieov

We live on Georgian Bay and so see Canada geese on our shoreline regularily. Last evening we came accross a baby that is about 2 to 3 weeks old unattended seemingly not well. Does anyone know anything about geese who could help with this little bird.

 

 

blue winged warbler
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 09:29:19 PM by John Challis

On Cooper's FAlls Road at the entrance to Alexander Hope Smith reserve property, I head a blue winged warbler calling. Didn't get a look at him though.
It was one of 29 bird calls heard on the jog this morning. Including the standards: jays (making quite a ruckus - they must have been chasing a crow away), American robin, Canada geese, chickadees, goldfinch, red-winged blackbirds (maybe starting a second brood already?), grackles, crows, red-eyed vireos. And ovenbird, red breasted nuthatch, black and white warbler, chestnut sided warbler (seen), common yellowthroated warbler (seen), black throated green, indigo bunting (seen), great crested flycatcher (seen), yellow shafted flicker (seen), swamp sparrow and possibly pine warbler (hard to tell those flipping trillers apart), song sparrow, possibly bobolinks in the farm field across from Hope Smith property, but it was hard to tell with road noise, great blue heron flying over, veery, pileated woodpecker drumming. And maybe a Nashville warbler; the pattern was right but it wasn't a classic call. I've forgotten a couple more. All in all the birds were in rare form today.

 

 

Re(2): A New Bumble Bee here
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 09:34:18 PM by John Challis

At her talk to the Muskoka Field Naturalists this month Carol Dunk offered the hypothesis that the ban on herbicides and pesticides in Ontario could be contributing to the jump in numbers of bumble bees seen this year.
She admitted it was pure speculation at this point, but it would certainly be a welcome outcome and a sign that good things can be done to restore native species.

 

 

Re(1): A New Bumble Bee here...ID confirmed
Posted on June 9, 2011 at 02:07:27 PM by Al Sinclair

Sheila Colla at http://www.savethebumblebees.com has confirmed the identification, Northern Amber Bumblebee.
Sheila is doing a workshop on bumblebees at the Ontario Nature conference this weekend. http://www.ontarionature.org/discover/annual_general_meeting.php

 

 

Re(1): A New Bumble Bee here
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 08:41:19 PM by Al Sinclair

From:The Bumble Bees of Southern Ontario: Notes on Natural History and Distribution
S. R. COLLA and S. DUMESH

Bombus borealis Kirby: the northern amber bumble bee
Phenology and Distribution: This species exhibits late spring emergence (earliest record May 14) and is sparsely distributed across southern Ontario (Fig. 13).
Floral Records: Field and Museum Records: Astragalus canadensis, Cirsium vulgare*, Echium vulgare*, Eupatorium fistulosum, Inula helenium*, Medicago sativa*, Melilotus alba*, Onopordum acanthium*, Rubus, Solidago, Symphyotrichum novae-angliae, Trifolium pratense*, Vicia cracca*.

 

 

A New Bumble Bee here
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 08:31:05 PM by Al Sinclair

Northern Amber Bumble Bee - Bombus borealis.   photo1  photo2
Saw it here late afternoon today on a Weigela bush in Joan's garden. Appears to be an uncommon species, few specimens in collections anyway, and rare in Algonquin. I think I have the ID correct but should try to get it verified.   Identifying features: Yellow hairs on face, black beneath the wing attachment(pleuron), tawny yellow hairs covering first 4 abdominal segments.  (8km east of Bracebridge)

 

 

Columbia Silkmoth
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 08:05:50 PM by Al Sinclair

Monday morning early there was a Columbia Silkmoth at our light. By 7:30am it was gone. This is the rarest of the big silkmoths, or maybe just rarely found or mistakenly identified as a Cecropia. But I'd have to say they are rare here for sure as our last one here was in 2006, before that 2000. Their food plant is the tamarack tree. The photo below was taken here on Monday, 8km east of Bracebridge.  7768 Columbia Silkmoth - Hyalophora columbia photo

This morning we had a call from Ernie Giles at Menominee Lake north of Baysville. He had his first ever Columbia there this morning. So maybe it's a good year for them.

 

 

Re(1): Walnut Sphinx Moth
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 08:09:31 PM by Al Sinclair

It must have a food source other than walnut that it likes in Muskoka as I see them here in most years. I would list them as uncommon in our area.

 

 

Walnut Sphinx Moth
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 03:02:14 PM by Barbara Taylor

This Walnut Sphinx Moth showed up at our porch light last night (Bracebridge). I don't recall seeing one here before. None of its common food plants are nearby as far as I know, but perhaps there is some other tree not on the list...we do have Black Cherry and Birch. According to butterfliesandmoths.org the host trees for the caterpillar are walnut, butternut, hickory, alder, beech, hazelnut, and hop-hornbeam.

Walnut Sphinx Moth - 7827 - Amorpho juglandis (aka Laothoe juglandis)   photo

 

 

Skippers in our yard
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 02:08:35 PM by Al Sinclair

We are fortunate to have Pepper and Salt Skippers in our yard most years. This is a species hard to see. In Ontario it is found in forest openings across the Canadian shield, a small skipper, inconspicuous, fast flyer with a short flight season.
For comparison I included a photo of the similar looking female Hobomok Skipper, these are larger and common in Muskoka.
Both these photos were taken today in Joan's flowerbeds on Jacob's Ladder and Dames Rocket, 8km east of Bracebridge.

Pepper and Salt Skipper - Amblyscirtes hegon  photo

Hobomok Skipper - Poanes hobomok (female)  photo

 

 

Re(4): Moths (Pictures)
Posted on June 7, 2011 at 09:53:20 AM by lauragilmour

Thank you Al for the resource! These moths and your website have sparked a new interest in insects for sure.

 

 

Re(3): Moths (Pictures)
Posted on June 6, 2011 at 07:19:31 PM by Al Sinclair

You might also look at my moth pages, the ones shown there have all been seen in Muskoka.
The main page is at http://www.moths.castillejalabs.com.
Here is the link to the page with big poplar on it. http://www.moths.castillejalabs.com/page4/page4.html
Click on the thumbnails to get a larger photo.

 

 

Re(3): Moths (Pictures)
Posted on June 6, 2011 at 06:22:26 PM by Barbara Taylor

Also check out Bill Oehlke's webpage if you're interested in seeing what the caterpillar looks like:
http://www.silkmoths.bizland.com/pmodesta.htm

(And I just realized if you click the number 7828 on the Moth Photographers webpage Al gave, then there are more photos which look more similar to Laura's photo...much less green overall.)

 

 

Re(2): Moths (Pictures)
Posted on June 6, 2011 at 05:13:31 PM by Al Sinclair

Top one is: Hodges #7828 Pachysphinx modesta - Big Poplar Sphinx
Check it out at http://mothphotographersgroup.msstate.edu/fast.php?plate=20&page=3&size=s&sort=h
Scroll down 7828.

 

 

Re(1): Moths (Pictures)
Posted on June 6, 2011 at 02:08:41 PM by lauragilmour

Learned that the bottom two are a Polyphemus Moth (Antheraea polyphemus, and a Luna Moth (Actias luna). The top one is still a mystery though.

 

 

Moths (Pictures)
Posted on June 6, 2011 at 12:50:24 PM by lauragilmour

Left the front poarch light on for the weekend while we were gone and came home to these amazing moths. I'm have not spent much time ID'ing insects so maybe some of you know who they are. Regardless I thought this group might enjoy the photos.  photo1  photo2  photo3

 

 

Redstart
Posted on June 5, 2011 at 05:05:14 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Spent about an hour trying to identify a warbler out back of the cottage on Saturday. The song was so variable! Finally this colorful guy appeared! 10km east of Washago!
Cheers Terry - American Redstart photo

 

 

Re(1): Ruddy Duck
Posted on June 26, 2011 at 09:26:50 PM by Barbara Taylor

She was there again this afternoon.
 

 

 

Ruddy Duck
Posted on June 5, 2011 at 01:33:49 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there was a Ruddy Duck in cell 1.

 

 

Monarch Butterfly
Posted on June 4, 2011 at 06:19:01 PM by Barbara Taylor

Finally saw my first Monarch of the year once the rain stopped and the sun came out this afternoon. (Bracebridge)

Don Davis let me know there were quite a few reported May 31 in the south near the Lake Ontario shore. Hopefully some sunny days with a southerly breeze will help them get to us soon. You can report your Monarch sightings at Journey North.

 

 

Green Herons, Arctic Skippers, Chalk-fronted Corporals
Posted on June 3, 2011 at 04:48:10 PM by Barbara Taylor

All three were abundant this morning.

Four Green Herons west of cell 4 at the Bracebridge Ponds.
Many Arctic Skippers along the Trans Canada Trail just west of the pipeline.
Several Chalk-fronted Corporals basking in the sun on the bridge at Henry Marsh.
Area Trails Map

 

 

Spiny Baskettail (dragonfly)
Posted on June 2, 2011 at 07:15:09 PM by Al Sinclair

Photographed this one in our yard today. Baskettails used to be fairly common, hunting in swarms, not so much lately around Bracebridge. This is the first Spiny Baskettail I have seen in my yard, too many trees, usually seen around wetlands. Note the hairy thorax, small spine on the male clasper. Why baskettail? I think because the female carries a ball of eggs at the end of its abdomen. Also note the best way to hold a dragonfly without hurting it.  photo1  photo2

 

 

Where did they go?
Posted on June 1, 2011 at 07:57:54 AM by DebbieAdams

I've noticed that many of our summer 'usual suspects' aren't around this year. A Phoebe passed through several weeks ago but I haven't heard it since. I can't ever recall a summer without hearing the familiar song of a Phoebe. Also MIA is a Veery and Hermit Thrush. I heard a Veery, once, weeks ago but not since. And warblers seem to be scarce too. There certainly isn't a shortage of insects here, so I wonder if many encountered bad weather on their trek north and simply didn't make it?
Lately, I have spotted a Hawk (either Broad Winged or Red Shouldered; not sure on the i.d.) which might account for our many Goldfinches,Chipping Sparrows along with Chickadees and Nuthatches relocating.
But the lack of summer birds is worrisome.
Also, there is a big decline in Mallard chicks in our bay. We used to have many families but this year not one.
And of course, all the Bats have gone. We spotted 4 last summer, but none this year.
(Walker's Point)

 

 

Bracebridge Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 31, 2011 at 01:58:52 PM by janice house

today at noon and yesterday while sitting in the line up on Manitoba Street to go through the 4 way stop I heard twittering above the buildings

 

 

Re(1): Pistachio Emerald Moth
Posted on June 1, 2011 at 09:53:40 AM by Barbara Taylor

This little green moth was at our porch light last night. (Not good resolution photo since shot through a plastic cup.) (Bracebridge)
Hodges#7084 -- Pistachio Emerald Moth -- Hethemia pistasciaria  photo

 

 

Re(1): Butterflies & Moths Galore, Bala
Posted on May 31, 2011 at 10:02:00 PM by Al Sinclair

Female Juvenal's Duskywing photographed here yesterday on adjuga. Males are darker. This one has been flying around the yard for a few days, also seen nectaring on violets. photo  8km east of Bracebridge.

 

 

Re(1): Butterflies & Moths Galore, Bala
Posted on May 31, 2011 at 06:51:09 PM by janice house

a yellow swallowtail flew by my office window today, Bracebridge

 

 

Re(1): Butterflies & Moths Galore, Bala
Posted on May 31, 2011 at 04:19:40 PM by Barbara Taylor

Noticed a "hummingbird moth" here yesterday on the Moss Phlox blooms. It stayed still long enough for me to identify it as Hemaris thysbe. (Bracebridge)

ref.:
http://bugguide.net/node/view/2638
http://www.silkmoths.bizland.com/hthysbe.htm

 

 

Butterflies & Moths Galore, Bala
Posted on May 30, 2011 at 06:53:11 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I saw my first Monarch yesterday and just now another out on my lilac bush along with 2 Mourning Cloaks and six clear-wings. I have never seen so many clear-wings together!

 

 

Re(3): Shorebird ID?
Posted on June 1, 2011 at 09:46:28 AM by Al Sinclair

What shorebirds commonly fly through Muskoka in large flocks in late May? Dunlin and Black-bellied Plover.
My guess on these (with a high degree of uncertainty): They look more like Dunlin, slimmer bodies.

 

 

Re(2): Shorebird ID?
Posted on May 31, 2011 at 05:53:30 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I think I would be able to see the black armpits on my computer with the full image if they were Black-bellied Plovers. I wondered about Dunlin.

 

 

Re(1): Shorebird ID?
Posted on May 30, 2011 at 10:30:27 PM by Barbara Taylor

Black-bellied Plovers? Dunlins? They are both on the move now.
Can't see anything but a general shape from your photos...at least on my computer screen.

 

 

Shorebird ID?
Posted on May 30, 2011 at 06:00:24 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Yesterday while watching over a wetland in Humphrey Township this flock of shorebirds flew over and appeared to land in the area. I wasn't able to find them after their landing. I can see they are long-winged, legs only slightly longer than the tail, beak about the same length as the head. No highly constrasting marking. I have increased the contrast in an attempt to enhance any marking. I heard no calls. What are they?
Topside:  photo1      Underside:  photo2

 

 

Re(1): Indigo bunting
Posted on May 31, 2011 at 04:24:27 PM by Barbara Taylor

Haven't noticed many millipedes here, but the white grubs in the lawn were more than plentiful this year. I've also noticed lots of Tent Caterpillar nests, so might be a good year for seeing Cuckoos. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Indigo bunting
Posted on May 30, 2011 at 05:54:54 PM by CatMacLean

Our Indigo Bunting showed up this am and anywhere I went in Huntsville today I seemed to see one. Also the Alder Flycatchers are back. I also saw my first Swallowtail Butterfly at the lilacs.
Has anyone else noticed a large number of millipedes this year?

 

 

3 bumblebee species today
Posted on May 29, 2011 at 10:55:03 PM by Al Sinclair

About 10 bumblebees of 3 species were on Ajuga reptans (Bugleweed, Bugle Carpet, Carpet Bugleweed, Carpetweed) in Joan's flower bed today. Ajuga was the most popular of all the perennials here currently blooming. Photos taken today 8km east of Bracebridge.

Bombus impatiens - Common Eastern Bumble Bee --- Only one yellow abdominal segment   photo1

Bombus bimaculata - Two-spotted Bumble Bee --- Yellow vertex (forehead)  photo2

Bombus ternarius - Tri-coloured Bumble Bee --- two orange segments   photo3

 

 

Loons in the Morning Mist, The Rosseau, JW Marriottt
Posted on May 29, 2011 at 07:30:47 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

This morning Robin Tapley and I did our Loons in the Morning Mist workshop for the Wings over Muskoka Festival. Our first bird was a Green Heron flying over squawking. One male loon was in the bay when we went out and another male flew in calling. Eventually they both swam right under the boat to everyone's delight. With Robin's excellent hearing he identified about 25 species of birds heard while we were out.

 

 

Re(1): Common Nighthawks
Posted on May 29, 2011 at 07:02:48 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

So good to hear that they are back! Super! Cheers Terry

 

 

Common Nighthawks
Posted on May 28, 2011 at 08:06:52 PM by Barbara Taylor

Three Common Nighthawks just flew over our house heading straight north. If it hadn't been for their peent calls, I wouldn't have noticed them. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on May 28, 2011 at 01:11:01 PM by Barbara Taylor

We hadn't been over to the Ponds for a while, so this morning we were pleasantly surprised to find a Golden-winged Warbler in the shrubbery near the south-west corner of cell 4 and a Pied-billed Grebe calling nearby.

 

 

Re(1): Northern Mockingbird
Posted on May 28, 2011 at 04:15:47 PM by Al Sinclair

Keep an eye out for it, could be nesting. There are other locations near Port Sydney where Mockingbirds have nested in the past: Deer Lake Rd at Kay Rd, and 141 at Raymond Rd. Good find, let us know if it is seen again.

 

 

Northern Mockingbird
Posted on May 28, 2011 at 08:25:40 AM by mmcanally

Saw a Northern Mockingbird being chased by a Grackle on Greer Road just north of the Ultramar gas station in Port Sydney. Only the second time we have seen a Mockingbird in Muskoka.

 

 

Re(2): Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 29, 2011 at 07:39:14 PM by Doug Smith

We were also in Huntsville on Friday evening and noticed a flock of 50+ swifts circling over the downtown north of Main St and West St. Didn't see them enter any chimneys when we were there, but couldn't help thinking they seemed a little lost and frustrated.

 

 

Re(2): Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 28, 2011 at 02:28:30 PM by DBurton

Chimney Swifts fly around Gravenhurst every afternoon, but only in small numbers.

 

 

Re(1): Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 28, 2011 at 08:20:35 AM by Al Sinclair

Friday evening at dusk we observed 10 to 15 Chimney Swifts circling around the Heritage Hills subdivision in Huntsville. We were on Heritage Crescent which at the top of the hill west of the pioneer village on the south side of town. From their flight maneuvers they appeared to be catching some insects. They disappeared shortly after 8:30pm.

 

 

Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 27, 2011 at 10:56:36 PM by goodyear

Late yesterday afternoon (Thursday) just after 5:00 p.m. as I was leaving work I saw a flcok of approx. 80 - 100 Chimney Swifts circling over the former site of the Empire Hotel in Huntsville. I watched them for several minutes before leaving for home. As I drove my car out to Main Street I noticed that the swifts seemed to be disappearing from view. I pulled over and observed them dropping down into the chimney on the building that houses the Treble Clef music store. They remained in there for approx. a minute. Then they began to fly out of the chimney and continued circling over downtown. I watched for another 5 minutes or so but didn't see them attempt any other chimneys. There was a light rain falling at the time.

 

 

Solitary Sandpiper and Least Sandpipers
Posted on May 27, 2011 at 10:45:22 PM by goodyear

This evening we saw a single Solitary Sandpiper and 3 Least Sandpipers on the west side of cell 1 at the Bracebridge Lagoons.

 

 

Re(1): Clay-colored Sparrows...three today
Posted on May 30, 2011 at 12:10:00 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were three Clay-colored Sparrows singing. Guess the warm sunshine encouraged more vocalization today.

 

 

Clay-colored Sparrow update and Rough-legged Hawk
Posted on May 27, 2011 at 04:46:30 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning we heard only one Clay-colored Sparrow. We had seen two of them singing when we first found them on May 21. While we listened for more sparrows, a Rough-legged Hawk circled overhead and did a "hover flight" a few times. Perhaps it saw a rabbit or rodent down below but decided against an attack, as it then soared off to the north-west. I thought all the Rough-leggeds would be much further north by now so quite a nice surprise. On one of the sidetrails in the woods we watched a Hairy Woodpecker carrying food to its very noisy begging young in their nest hole. (Bracebridge)

Directions:
The Clay-colored Sparrow was in the field west of the main trail going north of the Meadow Heights Dr. loop. On the map, you can see where a section of trail heads south-west for a short ways and deadends...that is where the field is. There are several young evergreens in the field and that is where the sparrow was. It takes about 20-25 minutes to hike over to the field from Meadow Heights Dr. The trail begins with a steep descent down into the Beaver Creek ravine and back up the other side...other than that, it is an easy walk.

Trail Map: http://muskokatrailscouncil.com/mtc_maps/br_south_monck.pdf

 

 

Re(1): Whippoorwill, Bala
Posted on May 26, 2011 at 09:49:03 AM by DebbieAdams

We had Chipmunks nest in a bird house mounted at least 10' high on a tree one year. (Walker's Point)

 

 

Whippoorwill, Bala
Posted on May 25, 2011 at 10:30:31 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Last night, Tuesday, was the first night a Whippoorwill called here. It arrived because the mosquitoes are now out in force!

Warblers have been scarce around my house this year. I have seen a male blackburnian twice. I see a male yellow-rumped every day. Black-throated green and chestnut-sided yesterday for the first time.

I have been watching a litter of four chipmunks as they play around their burrow. Very cute little rascals! I have pictures from 2006 of three in a tree cavity nest. The accounts I have read say that they usually use burrows.

 

 

LeConte's Sparrows in Algonquin Park
Posted on May 25, 2011 at 04:57:15 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Kai Millyard on ONTBIRDS (May 25, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

If you can fend off the bugs the sparrows were seen on Sunday afternoon
at the southeast corner of the abandoned airfield next to Lake of Two
Rivers. Access to the airfield is from a parking lot in the Mew Lake campground
entry road off Hwy 60, just west of Lake of Two Rivers.

 

 

Re(1): Smallmouth Bass spawning - an easy catch
Posted on May 24, 2011 at 01:04:39 PM by J. Gardner

If you are targeting this fish - in order to photograph - you are breaking the law. Closed season mean "no fishing". Jim Gardner

 

 

Smallmouth Bass spawning - an easy catch
Posted on May 24, 2011 at 10:50:56 AM by Al Sinclair

On the birdathon we saw someone catch a huge smallmouth bass off the shore on Lake Muskoka, looked about 36 inches long. They took photos and threw it back. This is bad news.

My fisherman friend tells me that smallmouth are now out of season and are guarding their nests in shallow water. They will strike any lure that comes near and can be caught multiple times. Unfortunately, some people who know this, catch these fish just for a photo and then release them. But when the fish is gone the eggs get eaten by other fish! If the fish are released this is not illegal, but if you see someone do this give them a good tongue lashing!!!

 

 

Indigo Bunting (Huntsville)
Posted on May 24, 2011 at 09:10:27 AM by Kerina

My husband and I spotted an Indigo Bunting singing loudly on the Hunters Bay trail yesterday. The trail is also filling up with the more usual suspects of the summer including: Yellow Warblers, American Redstarts, Chestnut Sided Warblers, Common Yellow-throats, Red Eyed Vireos, Catbirds, Song Sparrows, and Brown Thrashers.

 

 

full list
Posted on May 23, 2011 at 11:03:17 AM by Al Sinclair

SPECIES SEEN
May 22, 2011
Common Loon
Pied-billed Grebe
Double-crested Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Green Heron
Canada Goose
Wood Duck
Mallard
Blue-winged Teal
Bufflehead
Common Merganser
Turkey Vulture
Osprey
Northern Harrier
Broad-winged Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Wild Turkey
Ruffed Grouse
Sandhill Crane
Virginia Rail
Sora
Black-bellied Plover
Killdeer
American Woodcock
Spotted Sandpiper
Ring-billed Gull
American Herring Gull
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Whip-poor-will
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Belted Kingfisher
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Pileated Woodpecker
Alder Flycatcher
Least Flycatcher
Eastern Wood-Pewee
Eastern Phoebe
Eastern Kingbird
Great Crested Flycatcher
Bank Swallow
Tree Swallow
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Barn Swallow
Cliff Swallow
Golden-crowned Kinglet
Cedar Waxwing
Winter Wren
House Wren
Gray Catbird
Brown Thrasher
Eastern Bluebird
Veery
American Robin
Black-capped Chickadee
Red-breasted Nuthatch
White-breasted Nuthatch
Blue Jay
American Crow
Common Raven
European Starling
House Sparrow
Blue-headed Vireo
Warbling Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Purple Finch
Pine Siskin
American Goldfinch
Golden-winged Warbler
Nashville Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Magnolia Warbler
Black-throated Blue Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Black-throated Green Warbler
Blackburnian Warbler
Pine Warbler
Blackpoll Warbler
Black-and-white Warbler
American Redstart
Ovenbird
Northern Waterthrush
Common Yellowthroat
Wilson's Warbler
Canada Warbler
Scarlet Tanager
Chipping Sparrow
Clay-colored Sparrow
Savannah Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Indigo Bunting
Bobolink
Red-winged Blackbird
Eastern Meadowlark
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
Baltimore Oriole
-------- STATISTICS --------
Species seen - 105

 

 

MFN Birdathon May 22
Posted on May 23, 2011 at 10:52:08 AM by Al Sinclair

Muskoka Field Naturalists participated in the Baillie Birdathon yesterday. We were out for about 12 hours mostly around Bracebridge, a loop around Falkenburg Rd, Butter and Egg Rd and Hwy 118W, also a side trip out Golden Beach Rd.
7 participants, total species 105.
Some good birds, Sandhill Crane, Clay-colored Sparrow, Black-bellied Plover.
Full list later.

 

 

Moth photo from yesterday
Posted on May 21, 2011 at 05:21:04 PM by Al Sinclair

Curve-toothed Geometer. Caterpillars are large inchworms that mimic twigs, eat the leaves of almost every tree and shrub you can name but more likely to be found on white birch. Common moth in Muskoka, 4 at the light yesterday, 8km east of Bracebridge.  photo

 

 

Cliff Swallow nests
Posted on May 21, 2011 at 01:19:53 PM by Wilf Yusek

This morning I saw 2 nest sites, 1 at 64 Lankin and house next door, the one at 64 was in the gable directly above the garage and the other was in the gable on the side of the house next door, the 2nd nest would be on your left if you are facing 64.They were both feeding young.
Lankin is the first left turn after you go over the covered bridge on Covered Bridge Trail. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Clay-colored Sparrows - Bracebridge
Posted on May 21, 2011 at 11:23:34 AM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were two Clay-colored Sparrows having a singing duel in the field west of the orange snowshoe trail accessed from the trail going north of the Meadow Heights Dr. loop. On the map, you can see where a section of trail heads south-west for a short ways and deadends...that is where the field is. There are several young evergreens in the field and that is where the sparrows were perched. There were also newly arrived Alder Flycatchers singing nearby. A Northern Harrier flew overhead and a Wilson's Snipe flew down into a wet part of the field.

Trail Map: http://muskokatrailscouncil.com/mtc_maps/br_south_monck.pdf

 

 

Re(2): Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 22, 2011 at 02:33:29 PM by ChrisKerrigan

Thanks for the updated information. I'm concerned and curious to know if the Chimney Swifts are using the new chimney. I'll watch for updates.
Cheers!
Chris Kerrigan

 

 

Re(1): Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 22, 2011 at 10:31:50 AM by jim griffin

I checked my monitoring records for swifts in Huntsville for 2010 and find we are on a similar track this year. Last year we had big numbers on may 12, this year on may 14, then it dropped off to trickle for the rest of may and up to bigger numbers through june and july. We are advised that the first big number is probably migrants passing through to points north and the summer numbers are the resident,nesting and roosting group.

 

 

Re(1): Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 21, 2011 at 03:05:21 PM by Dawn Sherman

I checked last night and there were 19 swifts that were flying over town for approximately 20 minutes (8:40 pm - 9:00 pm). They did not show any interest in the new chimney.

 

 

Huntsville Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 21, 2011 at 08:38:36 AM by ChrisKerrigan

Does anyone have an update regarding the Chimney Swift situation in Huntsville?
Happy Birding!

 

Re(1): Great Crested Flycatcher
Posted on May 20, 2011 at 09:01:18 AM by lauragilmour

I just ID'd this bird at our house too, we have had a pair hanging out along the edges of our yard for a few days now.
Laura Gilmour (Dwight Area)

 

 

Great Crested Flycatcher
Posted on May 18, 2011 at 05:53:16 PM by DebbieAdams

Two Great Crested Flycatchers flew from treetop to treetop here today hopefully putting a dint in the Blackfly population. I've often heard this bird but have never seen one until now. (Walker's Point)

 

 

Re(1): Scarlet Tanagers
Posted on May 20, 2011 at 04:26:56 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there was a Scarlet Tanager singing in the woods south-west of cell 4 at the Bracebridge Ponds. A Wilson's Warbler was in the area where the Trans Canada Trail crosses the pipeline.

There was another Scarlet Tanager singing from the woods at the back of Henry Marsh. Only other new arrival at the marsh was a Gray Catbird. So far haven't heard or seen any Golden-winged Warblers at the marsh, but maybe they will come in tonight with this better weather.

(You can still get into Henry Marsh from Henry Rd. without the need for rubber boots, but if walking east to the Bracebridge Ponds, the trail remains flooded at the big curve as you approach the pipeline.) Area Trails Map (Bracebridge)

 

 

Scarlet Tanager - Meadow Heights
Posted on May 18, 2011 at 12:58:49 PM by goodyear

Heard and seen this morning, a singing Scarlet Tanager at the corner of Meadow Heights and Moreland Court (Bracebridge) Evening Grosbeaks (approx. 12) and a pair of Rose-breasted Grosbeaks continue to frequent the area as well.

 

 

Eastern Kingbirds - Henry Marsh
Posted on May 17, 2011 at 07:24:46 PM by Barbara Taylor

Two Eastern Kingbirds were at Henry Marsh this morning. Nothing else new there that we could find. A Swainson's Thrush was seen about half way over to the Bracebridge Ponds along the Trans Canada Trail.

So far, even after the rain we had, you can still get into the marsh without rubber boots...but the beavers have been busy rebuilding their dam so the water level is rising again. The Trans Canada Trail heading east from the marsh has several muddy areas and the trail is flooded at the big curve west of the pipeline (rubber boots are required there now). Area Trails Map (Bracebridge)

 

 

Red Admiral
Posted on May 17, 2011 at 02:34:49 PM by Barbara Taylor

This afternoon I saw my first Red Admiral butterfly of the year sitting amongst the Boxwood plants at Gagnon's garden centre. (Bracebridge)

Were they just a bit early last year or is this a late first sighting for me? They arrived in droves May 3 in 2010...maybe it's just this year's "slow spring" that has held them back.

 

 

Re(1): Beaver Creek - Meadow Heights
Posted on May 18, 2011 at 01:58:39 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were lots of warblers singing in the woods north of the Meadow Heights Dr. loop (trail is an offshoot from main South Monck Trail). Several Blackburnian, Black-throated Blue, Black-throated Green, Nashville, Black-and-white, Pine, Yellow-rumped, and Ovenbirds. Also Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, a Swainson's Thrush, Red-eyed Vireo, and a few singing Winter Wrens. At edge of woods west of orange snowshoe trail were American Redstart, Magnolia, Chestnut-sided, and Cape May. In a nearby wet part of the field there were Common Yellowthroats and Yellow Warblers. Town of Bracebridge Trails

P.S. - new arrival here yesterday was a House Wren constantly singing and chittering as it checked out our neighbour's birdhouse. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Beaver Creek - Meadow Heights
Posted on May 17, 2011 at 12:55:46 PM by goodyear

An early morning walk along the Keall's Falls Trail between Moreland Court and the falls turned up a Canada Warbler, several Chestnut-sided and Nashville, and a 1 or 2 of Yellow-rumped, Redstart, Pine, Yellow, Black and White, Common Yellowthroat, and Magnolia warblers. Also heard Veery and Swainson's Thrush.

 

 

Rose Breasted Grosbeak & Hummer
Posted on May 15, 2011 at 04:21:45 PM by DebbieAdams

A male and female Rose Breasted Grosbeak have been enjoying our feeders. Today I watched a Hummingbird fly up to the bright red on the Grosbeaks chest, obviously attracted by the colour. I've got 2 Hummingbird feeders out but I guess I better hurry up and get some flowers planted for the Hummer so the Rosie's can feed without being pestered.  (Walker's Point)

 

 

Indigo Bunting
Posted on May 15, 2011 at 04:15:18 PM by DebbieAdams

An Indigo Bunting made an appearance at our place today. I've never seen one before. How exciting! (Walker's Point)

 

 

Campbell Rd
Posted on May 15, 2011 at 03:15:00 PM by DBurton

No evidence of Connecticut Warbler today, but some others of interest on Campbell Rd, such as Snipe, Broadwing, Tennesee Warbler, Northern Waterthrush and Yellow-Throated Vireo. (behind the Muskoka Airport)

 

 

Wood Thrush
Posted on May 15, 2011 at 01:00:15 PM by Barbara Taylor

A newly arrived Wood Thrush and a Blue-headed Vireo were singing behind our house yesterday, but haven't heard them yet today. (Bracebridge)

Took a quick trip to the Bracebridge Ponds this morning...very windy and very few birds to be had. A lone male Bobolink was hunkered down in the weeds south of cell 2 and a Green Heron flew down to the flooded area west of cell 4.

 

 

Olive-sided Flycatcher
Posted on May 15, 2011 at 11:50:41 AM by goodyear

Seen this morning sitting atop a tall snag in the Beaver Creek Valley. It was seen across the creek from the burned, hollow tree on the hiking trail, which is between Moreland Court and Keall's Falls. (Bracebridge)

 

Re(2): Chimney Swifts in Huntsville
Posted on May 16, 2011 at 03:59:44 PM by Al Sinclair

From the Nanaimo BC bird report, May 15, 2011:
Saturday May 14:
Approximately 200 Vaux’s Swifts flew down a chimney and into a home in the 900 block of Bruce Avenue in Central Nanaimo. The residents of the house had a real challenge getting the Swifts out of the house.

 

 

Re(1): Chimney Swifts in Huntsville
Posted on May 16, 2011 at 01:00:09 PM by Barbara Taylor

I sure hope they return and find the replacement chimney. It is quite the sight to watch them fly down into their roosting spot to spend the night.
I found an amazing video of thousands of Vaux's Swifts in Portland, Oregon:
http://www.youtube.com/user/DriftwoodWildlife#p/a/f/0/7iZi1KWGLRs

 

 

Chimney Swifts in Huntsville
Posted on May 14, 2011 at 10:14:02 PM by jim griffin

We (Dawn Sherman, Dawn's Mom and I) had a truly fascinating swift monitoring session this evening between 8pm and 9pm. There were so many swifts they could not be counted and while it is easy to exaggerate numbers I am comfortable in saying that there were many hundreds of birds circulating over the downtown, both the old Empire site and other areas including our replacement chimney site. One flock of several hundred birds tried repeatedly to occupy a large circular metal vent at the rear of the Bell building on High St., many entered the vent but in a few seconds they came back out apparently not finding any roosting grip on smooth metal sides; we are jumping to the conclusion that on this cool wet night the birds wanted heat, something our chimney right across the street does not offer. There was no apparent interest in our chimney yet. We will cross our fingers for warmer weather occupancy. The kicker tonight is that we have no idea where all these birds disappeared to around 9pm.

 

 

Clay-colored Sparrow
Posted on May 14, 2011 at 10:10:26 PM by Barbara Taylor

Janice House reports there was a Clay-colored Sparrow at the end of their driveway Friday morning. (Doe Lake Rd., Gravenhurst)

 

 

Bay-breasted Warbler, New Bala Yard Bird
Posted on May 14, 2011 at 06:14:08 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

After having very few birds today and no warblers about 15 minutes ago a Bay-breasted Warbler and a Yellow-rumped fed on their way north. I hardly ever even see these let alone have one by the house! Moves too quickly for me to get pictures.

 

 

Connecticut Warbler
Posted on May 14, 2011 at 04:20:52 PM by DBurton

Connecticut Warbler heard on Campbell Rd (behind the Muskoka Airport) singing while it was raining out. Go past the garden centre (2km in). The road makes a 90 degree turn and the bird was just past the turn before the next house on the right.

 

 

Re(1): Another photo
Posted on May 14, 2011 at 12:06:49 PM by Al Sinclair

This one is Grote's Sallow (note the camouflage). Uncommon where we live, food plant Fraxinus americana, White Ash, not many of these trees near here. As Ash trees die off from the Emerald Ash Borer Beetle we could lose this moth also.  photo

 

 

Another good moth night
Posted on May 14, 2011 at 11:03:25 AM by Al Sinclair

Friday morning we had 50+ moths at the light. Gray Spring moths (17) were the most common. This bodes well for the breeding success of our Muskoka forest birds this year, most feed caterpillars to their young.

Friday we had our first Variable Carpet, Anticlea vasiliata, of the year, a handsome species that I've probably posted here before. The identity of this one was a mystery to me for many years as it is not in the Peterson Field Guide.  photo

 

 

Baltimore Oriole
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 06:15:00 PM by garyschultz

This morning a Baltimore Oriole was seen at our feeders(Algonquin Inn) so we ran out and placed an orange and was rewarded in few minutes by his return to the delight of those in the restaurant which had a very close view all day.
we also have daily visits from three pairs of Rose-breasted Grosbeaks as well as about six again of the Evening Grosbeaks.
as well as a lot of general activity, visitors always most welcome to drop in.
gary
Algonquin Inn

 

 

Northern Harrier - Henry Marsh
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 12:20:05 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at Henry Marsh there was a female Northern Harrier hunting low over the marsh and later a Broad-winged Hawk soaring high above. There were also some new arrivals at the marsh right where the Henry Trail leaves the woods...Magnolia Warbler, Tennessee Warbler, and American Redstart.

Along the Trans Canada Trail east of the marsh there were at least three singing Black-throated Blue Warblers...one posed nicely for us as it sang. A Sharp-shinned Hawk was circling above the trail just west of the gas pipeline.

At Kerr Park there was a Green Heron hunting along the edge of the little pond near the parking lot. It flew up and joined a second Green Heron which was flying overhead towards the river.

You don't need rubber boots to get into the marsh right now. But the beavers have rebuilt their dam already, so if we get much rain, the trail will probably flood again. Area Trails Map (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Blackburnian warbler
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 12:25:58 PM by Barbara Taylor

Don Bailey reports there was a Blackburnian north of cell 4 at the Bracebridge Ponds this morning.

 

 

Blackburnian warbler
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 09:14:41 AM by GayleCarlyle

Yesterday afternoon we were thrilled to have a male blackburnian warbler singing and flitting about at the top of a large tree in our yard in Washago.
Such a beautiful bird. I have heard them on our road before but they are usually way up high in the pines so very hard to see.

 

 

Tanager
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 08:55:15 AM by J. Gardner

Sitting at the computer this morning, I happened to glance out the window in time to see a Scarlet Tanager land in the top of a Silver Maple. He stayed long enough for me to run for the glasses and have a long admiring look at him. A bright treat on a dull morning. J. Gardner (Hurdville)

 

 

Porky
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 07:58:31 AM by CatMacLean

We have a porcupine up one of our poplars this am. The great crested flycatcher, red-eyed vireo, and common yellow- throat are back as well and the rose-breasted grosbeak is singing away. (Huntsville)

 

 

Re(1): Chimney Swift Gravenhurst
Posted on May 13, 2011 at 03:06:39 PM by GClayton

Saw my first swift today (May 13th) in Parry Sound.

 

 

Chimney Swift Gravenhurst
Posted on May 12, 2011 at 07:59:43 PM by janice house

heard a swift chittering at the corner by the TD bank tonight at 7pm

 

 

Sweetgrass is up
Posted on May 12, 2011 at 04:56:41 PM by Al Sinclair

Photographed today, roadside, Hwy 118E, 8km east of Bracebridge.
Hierochloe odorata: from the Greek, literally "holy fragrant grass".  photo1  photo2

 

 

Henry Marsh
Posted on May 12, 2011 at 01:15:17 PM by Barbara Taylor

Lots of birdsong from recent arrivals at the marsh this morning. The Pied-billed Grebe was calling from the west side again. Heard what sounded like a Cape May Warbler in the open area where the trail leaves the woods, but didn't see the bird. The trail into the marsh is still flooded by the "T" in the trail, but the water level should recede over the next few days since the town has opened up the beaver dam a bit. (Bracebridge) Area Map

Other birds at the marsh today included:
American Bittern
Broad-winged Hawk
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Nashville Warbler
Ovenbird
Great Crested Flycatcher
Least Flycatcher
Baltimore Oriole
Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Purple Finch
Belted Kingfisher
Double-crested Cormorant

along the Trans Canada Trail east of the marsh:
Magnolia Warbler
Wilson's Warbler (near the dip in the trail)
Black-and-white Warbler
Winter Wren

west of cell 4 at the Bracebridge Ponds:
Virginia Rail (two birds seen together)
Warbling Vireo

 

 

More arrivals
Posted on May 12, 2011 at 11:23:11 AM by CatMacLean

The least flycatcher is back along with a blackburnian, chestnut sided and mourning warblers. (Huntsville)

 

 

Re(1): Veery
Posted on May 12, 2011 at 11:49:15 AM by DebbieAdams

I heard a Veery this morning too. My favourite bird. (Walker's Point)

 

 

Veery
Posted on May 12, 2011 at 08:21:28 AM by CatMacLean

The veery was back in our bush this am along with winter wrens,ovenbirds,yellow warblers,a nashville and a yellow-rumped. (Huntsville)

 

 

Moth photo from today
Posted on May 11, 2011 at 09:35:25 PM by Al Sinclair

Nicely marked fresh specimen seen today. Tawny Eupithecia, common here, 3cm wingspan, food plants willow, poplar, viburnum, cherry. Looks like a glider! 8km east of Bracebridge.   photo

Family Geometridae - Geometrid Moths
Subfamily Larentiinae
Tribe Eupitheciini
Genus Eupithecia
Species ravocostaliata - Tawny Eupithecia - Hodges#7605

 

 

Gray Catbird
Posted on May 11, 2011 at 05:41:26 PM by Dawn Sherman

Gray Catbirds have returned today to the Hunter's Bay Trail in Huntsville.

 

 

Bobolink
Posted on May 11, 2011 at 01:09:59 PM by J. Gardner

The bobolink showed up this morning, thus completing the birds that are easily visible from the house. Life is good.... J. Gardner Hurdville

 

 

yellow throated vireo
Posted on May 11, 2011 at 11:30:10 AM by John Challis

I was able to put the call and the visual together this morning on a yellow-throated vireo. Its brilliant yellow breast was catching the early sunlight as it flitted among the treetops.
Ovenbirds are back on our road (green River Drive), too. They've been calling since the weekend. and the American bittern has continued to call from the swamp in our back yard. It would be great to find a female with him. (Washago)

 

 

Least Sandpipers - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on May 11, 2011 at 09:59:18 AM by Barbara Taylor

This morning four Least Sandpipers circled over the Bracebridge Ponds looking for a place to land. Eventually we found one of them at the south end of cell 2. The water level is very high in all cells with no muddy shoreline. Very few ducks...a Ring-necked Duck was with Lesser Scaup and Bufflehead in cell 4. A couple Wood Ducks, Mallards, and a pair of Blue-winged Teal were in cell 2.

A few White-crowned Sparrows were west of cell 4. A Baltimore Oriole was SW of cell 4. A couple Rusty Blackbirds and a Warbling Vireo were at the edge of the woods west of cell 3. Common Yellowthroats were singing from the shrubbery west of cell 2. A Black-and-white Warbler and a Yellow-rumped Warbler were south of cell 4, a Black-throated Green Warbler was singing near the dumping ponds, and a Yellow Warbler was near the Lagoon Lane gate.

 

 

Re(2): Ring-necked Pheasant
Posted on May 10, 2011 at 09:08:44 PM by MargueriteUrban

Well, sadly, this pheasant may pose no further threat to the grouse population of Newholm. Less than an hour after we sighted him, my husband heard gunshots a couple of houses away...

 

 

Re(1): Ring-necked Pheasant
Posted on May 10, 2011 at 07:33:30 AM by Wayne Bridge

Two years ago I posted re. pheasant escapees from a local hunt camp. They have flourished VERY well and seem to be expanding their territory - quickly. For example, right in the Town of Kearney business/residential area there are 3 males with staked out territories that I know of for certain. Another out at Sand Lake. And several along Rain Lake Road toward Algonquin Park. So...I wonder have they expanded southward (although there have been reports of escapees from there pre-dating the Kearney ones). I fear that it is a matter of time before they are IN Algonquin Park (if they aren't already). I say "fear" because since the ring-necks arrived our local grouse have disappeared (i.e. competition for same habitat, breeding grounds, and some of the same food - like the corn birdfeeding nature lovers put out). [Kearney: a few miles north of Arrowhead]

 

 

Ring-necked Pheasant
Posted on May 9, 2011 at 07:33:59 PM by MargueriteUrban

A male Ring-necked Pheasant, with brilliant plumage shining in the intense sunlight, paraded through our back woods in Newholm this evening.

 

 

Double-crested Cormorant
Posted on May 9, 2011 at 06:48:02 PM by Dawn Sherman

There was a Double-crested Cormorant on Hunter's Bay in Huntsville today and there is now a pair of Brown Thrashers on the Hunter's Bay Trail.

 

 

Loons (photo)
Posted on May 9, 2011 at 06:19:35 PM by DebbieAdams

Just after the ice went out, two loons appeared in our bay. They seem to be nesting close by and today we spotted them fishing. It was a wonderful day to be out on Lake Muskoka watching loons!  photo

 

 

Re(1): Green Heron
Posted on May 9, 2011 at 03:41:55 PM by janice house

on Saturday 2 flew over my car on hwy 11 near Webers

 

 

Green Heron
Posted on May 9, 2011 at 09:56:35 AM by gaylecarlyle

This morning we watched a green heron fly over our road, Green River Drive, in Washago.

 

 

Some Algonquin Park Birds
Posted on May 8, 2011 at 10:25:04 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Lev Frid on ONTBIRDS (May 8, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Good Evening Birders,

I spent the better part of this weekend "catching up" in Algonquin Park.
There were many birds to see and the weather was beautiful, AND - no
blackflies out..yet.

Of the numerous times I'd seen the spectacle, today's SPRUCE GROUSE show was
the best I've seen in my life - three males were displaying alongside one
another near the crossroads of Arowhon Rd. and the Old Railway Bed. They
preformed flutter-flights, tail-fanning displays and drummed for over an
hour in the morning. One flew right at me and fluttered to my feet! Get out
and enjoy this show while it lasts, folks, they won't be doing this for much
longer!

Warblers were back home with YELLOW-RUMPED, BLACK-THROATED GREEN, PINE,
NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH, PARULA and YELLOWTHROATS all singing away on
territory. More are on their way.

Some other interesting birds included a SANDHILL CRANE this morning over the
airfield, as well as a NORTHERN HARRIER yesterday. STARLINGS were also
present, one at West Rose Lake on the railway bed and five at the airfield
(These are somewhat of a big deal in the Park!) GREEN-WINGED TEAL, a RUSTY
BLACKBIRD and a LESSER YELLOWLEGS were on the mudflats at West Rose Lake,
which is now slowly draining as that once very picturesque beaver dam near
the bridge has broken. An early EASTERN KINGBIRD was there today too.

GRAY JAYS were present, but not obvious, near the locked gate on the railway
bed. They're becoming secretive now as they're tending nests.

In terms of mammals, Moose never fail at this time of year - I had six while
driving down the Highway to the Visitor Centre from the West Gate.

Good Birding,

Lev Frid
Toronto, ON

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.

Kilometre markers along Highway 60 in the Park go from the West Gate (km 0)
to near the East Gate (km 56). Get your park permit and the park tabloid
(with a map of birding locations mentioned here) at the gates.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 has recent bird sightings and information.

 

 

Whip-poor-will
Posted on May 8, 2011 at 04:15:59 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Whip-poor-will calling last night 10km east of Washago. So nice to hear them again! Must mean the blackflies are coming! Cheers Terry

 

 

Re(1): Eastern Kingbirds, Warbling Vireos, Rusty Blackbirds
Posted on May 10, 2011 at 01:10:45 PM by John Challis

ah hah! If warbling vireos are showing up at the lagoons then that might be what I heard yesterday morning during the dog walk.
This morning I heard either a blue-headed or red-eyed vireo. It only called a couple of times and went quiet and I couldn't get a look at him.

 

 

and a Bluebird
Posted on May 8, 2011 at 01:21:00 PM by Barbara Taylor

Bev Bailey has reported one more highlight that I missed. They saw a male Bluebird checking out the two new nestboxes that have been installed near the pathway leading from Kerr Park to the Bracebridge Ponds.

About a week ago we saw a pair of Tree Swallows checking out one of those nestboxes...so stay tuned for a potential fight over who gets what.

 

 

Eastern Kingbirds, Warbling Vireos, Rusty Blackbirds
Posted on May 8, 2011 at 12:28:16 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning was the annual Muskoka Field Naturalists birding hike around the Bracebridge Ponds. I did not stay for the full walk, so perhaps Janice or others can add any highlights that I missed.

At the edge of the woods west of cell 3 there were at least three Rusty Blackbirds in a small wet area. Nearby were some Common Yellowthroats, Yellow-rumped Warblers, two Warbling Vireos, and two Eastern Kingbirds. A Sora was calling from west of cell 4, a Brown Creeper was singing just NW of cell 4, and an Osprey soared past to the north. In quick succession we saw a Turkey Vulture soaring above the ridge to the SW of cell 4, then a Broad-winged Hawk circled overhead, and a Double-crested Cormorant flew by. On my way back to Kerr Park, I saw two Green Herons perched in a dead tree north of cell 4.

(note: the new plant is still under construction at the south side of cell 3)
Bracebridge Ponds map (north approx. at top and west at left):  http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y175/naturepics/birdboard/pondsmap.jpg

 

 

Re(2): Ruby Throated Hummingbird
Posted on May 8, 2011 at 12:07:47 PM by J. Gardner

A hummer in Hurdville. Cause for celebration. J. Gardner

 

 

Re(1): Ruby Throated Hummingbird
Posted on May 7, 2011 at 05:14:42 PM by CatMacLean

We just our first one this afternoon in Huntsville along with two Rose Breasted Grosbeaks, a black-throated blue and an ovenbird.

 

 

Ruby Throated Hummingbird
Posted on May 7, 2011 at 04:22:34 PM by tedthevideoman

Just had our 1st at the feeder about 10 minutes ago!! (Bracebridge)

 

 

Spring Moths
Posted on May 7, 2011 at 10:19:35 AM by Al Sinclair

We had 18 moth species flying here this week. Monday was the best night with 117 individuals at the light. This single night total has been higher than recent years and might indicate a recovery in the moth population. Or it could be a result of the lack of good flying weather for moths this spring so they all were out at once on the first warm night.

There was one new species for me on Friday, Cerastis fishii, Hodges checklist number 10997. Apparently rare it has no common name but it could be called the Blueberry Dart after its food plant. David Beedle has found it once in Parry Sound District at Portage Lake.

We also had a close relative Metalepsis salicarum, Hodges checklist 10996. This one is common here and is called the Willow Dart after its main food plant but it also eats others including alder.

Below are photos of these two moths taken here on Friday May 6, 2011. 8km east of Bracebridge.  photo1  photo2

 

 

Crow hunting again...
Posted on May 6, 2011 at 02:08:22 PM by Barbara Taylor

Apparently the Crow has moved on from catching Shrews in our yard and is aiming for bigger game now. Just happened to see it catch a Chipmunk! (Bracebridge)

 

 

Pied-billed Grebe at Henry Marsh
Posted on May 6, 2011 at 12:23:10 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning we saw a Pied-billed Grebe at the west side of Henry Marsh and it was calling a few times. There were also a few Ring-necked Ducks, Mallards, Blue-winged Teal, and Wood Ducks, a Great Blue Heron, and a Belted Kingfisher. We walked over to the Bracebridge Ponds and saw a Green Heron perched in a dead tree north of cell 4, and heard the Virginia Rail calling from the same place west of cell 4. Along Henry Trail not far from the Henry Rd. parking area we saw two Hermit Thrush.

Note that the trail leading into Henry Marsh from Henry Rd. is badly flooded at the "T" in the trail so tall rubber boots are required. The trail heading over to the Bracebridge Ponds is also badly flooded at the big curve in the trail just west of the gas pipeline as you near the Ponds. Area Map

 

 

Re(1): R.T. Hummingbird
Posted on May 6, 2011 at 07:40:12 PM by DebbieAdams

Just spotted our first for this year (at 7pm) on Walker's Point.

 

 

R.T. Hummingbird
Posted on May 6, 2011 at 07:53:46 AM by Wilf Yusek

Had my 1st Hummer here at Prospect Lake this morning

 

 

Re(1): Bracebridge Lagoons
Posted on May 5, 2011 at 12:25:24 PM by Barbara Taylor

We didn't see the Shovelers this morning, but we heard and then finally saw a Virginia Rail west of cell 4.

 

 

Bracebridge Lagoons
Posted on May 5, 2011 at 10:42:45 AM by goodyear

Last night after dinner we walked around the Bracebridge Lagoons. It was very quiet. A pair of Shovelers were in cell 3 (which is now flooded) and there were two Common Yellowthroats west of Cell 4. Only about 30 or so ducks -Mallards, Scaup, Wood Ducks,and Buffleheads.

 

 

Re(1): chipmunk eating snake
Posted on May 5, 2011 at 08:37:03 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Tastes like chicken!

 

 

chipmunk eating snake
Posted on May 5, 2011 at 09:45:03 AM by John Challis

Not to be viewed over breakfast. Gayle saw this little bit of weirdness unfolding by the pile of rocks that snakes use as a hibernaculum. Garters and water snakes have been emerging over the past few weeks, but some didn't survive the winter, and apparently one chipmunk has a palate for decaying garter snake.   photo

 

 

Broadwinged Hawks, Six Mile Lake
Posted on May 4, 2011 at 09:04:14 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

This afternoon while out driving near Six Mile Lake I saw a Broadwinged Hawk on a branch by the road. I pulled into a driveway and pulled my camera and big lense up onto the window. After adding a 2X converter to my 500mm lens I took a couple of pics and looked to make sure they were in focus as the 7D doesn't autofocus with the 2X on it. Much to my surprise when I looked back there were two broadwings!  photo1  photo2  I assumed the female in the first image was watching some prey on the ground. After observing and photographing the next sequence of events I have changed the pose in the first image for an invitation!

 

 

Three Ruffed Grouse
Posted on May 4, 2011 at 08:54:40 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

On my way down to the lake this afternoon I saw a Ruffed Grouse under my screened porch. A little while later I saw one over near Six Mile Lake. On the way back from there I saw one taking a dust bath on the roadside by the Whata Convenience Store. Must have been just right for grouse outings!

 

 

Nashville and other warblers
Posted on May 4, 2011 at 04:32:41 PM by CatMacLean

Heard a Nashville and Black-Throated Green along with a Yellow-Rumped this am in Dwight.

 

 

Crow hunting for shrews
Posted on May 4, 2011 at 04:12:24 PM by Barbara Taylor

Earlier today I happened to see a Crow catch a Shrew which had come out next to a pile of spilled birdseed and sunflower husks that I had raked up from around our birdfeeder. A few moments ago the Crow was back and it was standing on top of the pile, looking down to its left, then the right, then turning its head as though listening to the ground. Suddenly it thrust its bill down into the pile and stabbed and stabbed and dirt was being flung all over. It did not come up with a meal, but it must have been trying for another shrew. I've never seen this behaviour before...has anyone else seen Crows hunting rodents?

 

 

kinglet
Posted on May 4, 2011 at 02:34:09 PM by John Challis

Had a small flock of ruby-crowned kinglets singing and foraging in the cedars behind our house (Washago) this morning. We seem to get a big wave of them come through here in the spring, although I didn't notice them last year.

 

 

Chimney Swifts
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 09:20:19 PM by dawn Sherman

Three Chimney Swifts returned to the site of the old Empire Hotel tonight where they used to roost before the building was torn down last year. They circled above the site for 10-15 minutes before moving on. No sign of them showing any interest in the new chimney that was built for them on top of the Huntsville Town Hall, but hopefully others that follow will locate it. (Huntsville)

 

 

Re(1): American Robin incubating (photo)
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 09:33:59 PM by dinnymccraney

We have mourning doves nesting in last year's robin's nest.
I guess they are too lazy to build their own!

 

 

Re(1): American Robin incubating (photo)
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 04:18:42 PM by lauragilmour

Neat observation on choice of nesting location.

 

 

American Robin incubating (photo)
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 04:02:01 PM by Al Sinclair

Joan noticed that the Robin was incubating today, May 3. They were started building the nest a week ago. They have been building their nest as close as possible to our dog runs for years. We assume that they are trying to avoid nest predation by red squirrels since squirrels stay well away from the dogs.  photo
8km east of Bracebridge.

 

 

Re(1): Barred Owl
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 02:58:50 PM by GayleCarlyle

Our executive director here at Grant's Woods got a really good look at a barred owl yesterday.
I had been hearing calls earlier in the spring so perhaps there is a nesting pair in the woods.

 

 

Barred Owl
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 09:42:42 AM by Barbara Taylor

A Barred Owl was calling in the middle of the night out behind our house. There wasn't any answering call. We haven't seen an owl in the neighbourhood since the Crows returned to their territory and drove one out of our yard. So it was nice to hear that an owl is still around. There are certainly lots of mice and shrews available...just no more daytime hunting with those Crows around. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Baltimore Oriole
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 00:01:09 AM by MikeWeiss

on May 2 sited the first Baltimore Oriole im on Penetang Bay.

 

 

Re(1): rose breasted grosbeak
Posted on May 11, 2011 at 07:17:37 AM by janice house

we had a male here yesterday, after dinner I got the camera out to take a photo and by the time I had it focused and the zoom on there were 3 males and 1 female on the feeders, never know what is hiding in the cedar hedge (Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst)

 

 

Re(2): rose breasted grosbeak
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 02:56:48 PM by GayleCarlyle

We have 2 male rose breasted grosbeaks at the feeders here at Grant's Woods outside of Orillia.
Gorgeous birds.
And I'm thrilled to see that great crested flycatchers are back. We always have a pair around our home in Washago. So there are benefits to having plenty of dead and dying trees.

 

 

Re(2): Rose-breasted Grosbeak (photo)
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 03:53:38 PM by Al Sinclair

He filled up and then sat on a tree near the feeder for 15 minutes. Looked worn out from a long flight.  photo

 

 

Re(1): rose breasted grosbeak
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 02:24:49 PM by Al Sinclair

Male Rose-breasted here this morning at our sunflower feeder.
Also Great-crested Flycatcher calling in the woods.
8km east of Bracebridge

 

 

rose breasted grosbeak
Posted on May 2, 2011 at 11:57:30 PM by MikeWeiss

first male rose breasted grosbeak sited today on Penetang Bay

 

 

hummingbird
Posted on May 2, 2011 at 08:46:30 PM by dinnymccraney

Put the feeders out at noon today and caught a quick glimpse of a hummingbird mid-afternoon.
(South Muskoka Golf Course...Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Sandhill Crane
Posted on May 10, 2011 at 09:46:12 PM by DavidMcKenna

At first, I didn't believe my eyes, but there's only 2 cranes listed in North America and the 3 I saw in flight at Peninsula Lake Rd. and North Muldrew Lake Rd. could not have been anything else. Unfortunatly, the sighting lasted only a 1/2 a minute or so but, with extended necks and slow, huge flapping wings, they definately were not Great Blue herons (with necks curved).

 

 

Sandhill Crane
Posted on May 2, 2011 at 04:38:34 PM by Barbara Taylor

Gerry Del Col reports there has been a single Sandhill Crane seen for over a week, feeding in back fields very close to Sparrow Lake, Kilworthy.

 

 

Merlins
Posted on May 2, 2011 at 04:19:26 PM by CatMacLean

I have seen a pair of Merlins in our bush over the last couple of days. I hope they nest here this year. Also had a white-crowned sparrow at the feeders and I heard a black and white warbler behind Huntsville High School this am

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 08:32:38 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Bruce Di Labio on ONTBIRDS (May 1, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Hi Everyone
Spent the day birding various sites along Hwy. 60. Overall, an interesting day but numbers low. We did have 3 Spruce Grouse, 1 male at Spruce Bog Trail and 2 along Mizzy Lake Trail along with 1 Boreal Chickadee. There were 2 Gray Jays observed at mile marker 54 by a group from Kingston. The warbler variety was low but we did have Black & White, Nashville, Pine, Yellow, Common Yellowthroat and lots of Yellow-rumped Warbler. At the Old Airfield there were a few birds including American Pipit, Vesper Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow and a couple of Evening Grosbeaks flew over. Along Hwy. 60 we observed 6 Moose.
Good Birding, Bruce and Ben

 

 

Re(1): Hummingbird
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 06:26:27 PM by Jon Grandfield

Also had a hummer this morning before 8 am at our Soldiers & Sailors (pulmonaria) which is in full bloom. A neighbour said it was around yesterday but I did not notice it.
20 Sallys Lane, Port Sydney

 

 

Hummingbird
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 03:30:52 PM by MaryWillmott

Sunday May 1 Male Ruby Throated Hummingbird at Beaumaris

 

 

Re(1): broad-winged hawk & more
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 03:52:09 PM by Barbara Taylor

This afternoon a Broad-winged Hawk swept past our house and then made several fly-overs of the neighbourhood. If it hadn't been calling as it went by I don't think I would have realized it was a Broadwing...it was moving real fast, and its wings were tucked in at a funny angle due to the strong wind. (Bracebridge)

Nice that some of the "regulars" are returning to their territories. A Green Heron was back at the Bracebridge Ponds yesterday in the usual area, west of cell 4. There were also a few Spotted Sandpipers around the edges of cell 3.

 

 

broad-winged hawk & more
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 02:35:24 PM by John Challis

Heard what sounded like a red-shouldered hawk's quick call this morning but it turned out to be a broad-winged hawk. It came by our yard twice (Washago).
Yesterday Gayle saw a common green darner in the yard. Ron Stager's sighting just a bit ahead of ours.
Also got a glimpse of the first yellow rumped warbler in our neighbourhood this spring. Ithink we have pine warblers calling too, but there are too damn many trillers to know. Northern waterthrush were calling yesterday morning but it was very quiet this morning. Just the chickadees and woodpeckers (YS flicker, YB woodpecker and pileated).

 

 

Re(2): Squirrel Be-Gone Bird Feeder (photo)
Posted on May 2, 2011 at 03:40:19 PM by GayleCarlyle

Great photos!
A few years ago I bought a cheapo (ok, about $25)"squirrel-proof" feeder. It took a red squirrel less than 10 minutes to figure out it could put its paw in through the wire and scoop out the seeds; like a monkey.
So now we have the expensive Squirrel Buster feeders that close when the rodents land on them.
It works perfectly; except that the squirrels have taken to chewing on the painted metal. They still can't get at the seeds though and they give up after a while.

 

 

Re(1): Squirrel Be-Gone Bird Feeder (photo)
Posted on May 2, 2011 at 09:51:00 AM by Barbara Taylor

The designers of squirrel-proof feeders seem to have forgotten about the smaller sized Red Squirrels. Your cute photo reminded me of another which I found in the Bird Board Archives:
-----------------------------------
Squirrel-proof Feeder - photo
Posted on February 1, 2006 at 04:38PM by Barbara Taylor for Mary Willmott

Mary Willmott sent this photo of their squirrel-proof feeder with a Red Squirrel inside.

 

 

Squirrel Be-Gone Bird Feeder (photo)
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 11:06:43 AM by DebbieAdams

It prevents squirrels from feeding on it but apparently not in it!  photo

 

 

Blue Heron nests
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 09:24:30 AM by DebbieAdams

Yesterday we counted 8 Blue Herons sitting on nests at Eleanor Island,(National Wildlife Sanctuary), Lake Muskoka.
There were also many, far too many, Double-crested Cormorants sitting on nests.
The granite outcropping was filled with nesting Herring Gulls.
Also spotted 2 Common Mergansers on the east side in the water.

 

 

Dragonfly and spring flowers
Posted on April 30, 2011 at 11:41:11 AM by RonS

Hi
Cutting wood this morning before the black flies and mossies:
i) Common Green Darner dragonfly
ii) trout lilies and spring beauties: Wakerobins almost blooming
iii) Mourning Cloak butterflies
Merkley Road of Greater Barkway Area

 

 

And a Black-and-white and Common Yellow-throat
Posted on April 30, 2011 at 12:33:12 PM by Diannawolfe

Also a Black-and-white and Common Yellow-throat, new for this year.

 

 

Ovenbird
Posted on April 30, 2011 at 10:32:33 AM by diannawolfe

Our resident Ovenbird arrived overnight. Other birds heard from the back deck this morning included Northern Waterthrush, Black-throated Green, Yellow-rumped, Purple Finch, Winter Wren, and the other usuals. (Kilworthy)

 

 

Re(1): Pine Siskins... a dozen
Posted on April 29, 2011 at 03:38:48 PM by John Challis

I wonder if those are the same siskins that have been at our feeder in Washago for the last few days. There didn't seem to be as many this morning - mostly goldfinches.

 

 

Pine Siskins... a dozen
Posted on April 29, 2011 at 02:53:15 PM by Al Sinclair

12 Pine Siskins arrived here yesterday, found the nyger seed and returned today. Nyger feeders going down fast again.
8km east of Bracebridge.

 

 

Henry Marsh
Posted on April 29, 2011 at 01:45:41 PM by Barbara Taylor

Not much activity at the marsh this morning. Several Ring-necked Ducks, a few Wood Ducks, Mallards, and three Canada Geese on the beaver pond. About twenty Tree Swallows and Barn Swallows were flying low over the water as they tried to find insects on this showery,windy,cool morning.

If you plan to visit the marsh anytime soon, you will need tall rubber boots. The trail leading to the marsh is badly flooded at the "T" and the beaver pond is overflowing the dike in a few places.

directions to Henry Marsh:
From traffic lights at Eccelstone Dr./Wellington St. in Bracebridge, take Beaumont Dr. along the Muskoka River to Henry Rd. on your left. There is a parking area at the end of Henry Rd. by the pile of woodchips at the trailhead. (Note that the Wellington St. bridge across the Muskoka River is closed to vehicle traffic until mid-June when construction is scheduled to be complete...detours are clearly marked.)

 

 

Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on April 28, 2011 at 06:27:10 PM by DougMortson

A Red-bellied Woodpecker has been visiting our place on Bell Lake north of Parry Sound.

 

 

Brown Thrasher
Posted on April 28, 2011 at 11:18:37 AM by Dawn Sherman

A Brown Thrasher was back this morning on the Hunter's Bay Trail in Huntsville.

 

 

Re(1): Hermit thrush
Posted on April 28, 2011 at 12:06:37 PM by lauragilmour

We've heard Hermit Thrushes in Dwight too!

 

 

Hermit thrush
Posted on April 28, 2011 at 09:08:51 AM by GayleCarlyle

So exciting! Heard my first hermit thrush of the year in the woods on the other side of our wetland in Washago.
Heard it at about 6:15am. Having a puppy sure gets one up early and outside!

 

 

Whip-poor-will
Posted on April 28, 2011 at 08:19:19 AM by CatMacLean

While listening to the spring peepers and the woodcock last night, I could also hear the whip-poor-will calling. This morning there was a red-backed salamander in our window well. Trilliums are coming up in our woods as well. (Huntsville)

 

 

New Birds G'hurst
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 09:30:50 PM by DBurton

4 Evening Grosbeaks, Pine Warbler, 4 Yellow-Rumped Warblers, 3 Flickers, Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker.

 

 

Evening Grosbeaks
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 05:51:01 PM by Dawn Sherman

Lots of birds today! Heard a Blue-headed Vireo this morning and then I saw 4 Evening Grosbeaks on the Hunter's Bay Trail this afternoon along with a pair of Buffleheads, a pair of Common Mergansers, and Ruby-crowned Kinglets. Then another group of about half a dozen Evening Grosbeaks on Mary Street with Common Redpolls, American Goldfinch, Purple Finch, Brown-headed Cowbird, Pine Siskin, White-throated Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Tree and Song Sparrows. (Huntsville)

 

 

House Finch
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 04:43:27 PM by Barbara Taylor

There was a male House Finch singing this morning along the Beaver Creek hiking trail behind the houses on Covered Bridge Trail. Also two Winter Wrens in full song and many Ruby-crowned Kinglets and White-throated Sparrows. Several noisy Evening Grosbeaks were at the end of Moreland Cres. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Loons etc
Posted on May 1, 2011 at 01:46:23 PM by Hilarycurrer

Chris I am also on LOB, just wondered where you saw the loons. We are at the end of Patterson Bay, just west of Rabbit Bay. The buffleheads, wood ducks and goldeneyes always seem to gather around our bay early May. As well we have a fairly active beaver community at the moment. Hilary

 

 

Loons etc
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 03:48:35 PM by Chris

Within last few days have seen on Lake of Bays
- a group of Loons 20plus - an awesome sight
- a pair of Buffleheads
- a pair of Wood Ducks

 

 

Re(3): and Black-throated Green
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 08:47:07 PM by diannawolfe

We also had a Blue-headed here today as well as a Black-throated Green Warbler. (Kilworthy)

 

 

Re(2): and Blue-headed Vireo
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 06:31:09 PM by CatMacLean

Heard our first blue-headed vireo this evening along with many spring peepers. We have a had a huge flock of white-crowned sparrows around as well as male and female purple finches, juncos, tree sparrows and still a few red-polls.Huntsville.

 

 

Re(1): and Blue-headed Vireo
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 03:11:15 PM by Al Sinclair

First of the year here, 11AM Apr 27, 8km east of Bracebridge.

 

 

Northern Waterthrush - Bracebridge
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 10:13:35 AM by Al Sinclair

A Northern Waterthrush was singing here this morning, back home in the wet woods across the road.
8km east of Bracebridge

 

 

Re(1): Yellow-rumped Warbler, Bala
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 09:53:01 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

At least 6 yellow rump males! I was wrong about the juncos leaving. They are just out feeding in the garden instead of the feeders.

 

 

Yellow-rumped Warbler, Bala
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 08:54:54 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Although the juncos seem to have departed there was a beautiful Yellow-rumped Warbler flitting through the trees beside my house just now.
Its slow but it is coming!

 

 

warbler
Posted on April 27, 2011 at 08:41:10 AM by CatMacLean

Heard a yellow-rumped warbler this am in our bush along with a hermit thrush. A great blue heron flew overhead and our field was full of white-throated sparrows.Huntsville.

 

 

Re(1): Bittern
Posted on April 26, 2011 at 09:35:11 AM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Gayle, great to hear you have a Bittern calling behind the house. Lets hope he finds a mate and nests there. Its a great spot! Cheers Terry

 

 

Bittern
Posted on April 26, 2011 at 09:22:35 AM by GayleCarlyle

We were quite thrilled to have an American Bittern "singing" in the wetland behind our house in Washago.
This is the first time in 5 years we've heard one in there.
Peeper chorus is deafening later on in the evening.

 

 

Easter Bunny...
Posted on April 25, 2011 at 07:31:11 PM by Barbara Taylor

Almost missed this fellow in our yard tonight as the colour change to summer brown from winter white is almost complete. Apparently they like to eat White Pine needles in addition to a lot of other tasty things coming up in our garden. (Bracebridge)  photo1  photo2  photo3  photo4

Snowshoe Hare:
http://www.hww.ca/hww2.asp?id=103
http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/org/caer/ce/eek/critter/mammal/hare.htm

 

 

Re(1): Barn Swallow
Posted on April 26, 2011 at 09:38:02 AM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Great to read these barn swallow reports..... really hoping we see a rebound in barn swallow numbers this year and that they have a good breeding season! Cheers Terry

 

 

Re(1): Barn Swallow
Posted on April 26, 2011 at 08:14:39 AM by Alex Mills

There was a single Barn Swallow with some Tree Swallows at Magnetawan on April 22.

 

 

Barn Swallow
Posted on April 25, 2011 at 06:37:35 PM by CatMacLean

Saw the first barn swallow at the barn where we keep our horse off District Rd 10. Also a couple of Merlins were circling overhead this evening.

 

 

Nashville Warbler
Posted on April 25, 2011 at 07:43:18 AM by janice house

I heard a nashville warbler this morning on my doggy walk, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Re(1): Sandhill Crane east of Washago
Posted on May 10, 2011 at 09:48:29 PM by DavidMcKenna

Beauty eh? Is this the first year you've sighted them?

 

 

Sandhill Crane east of Washago
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 10:48:21 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

The Sandhill Crane we have seen for the last 3 weeks is still on Brooks Sideroad close to Hwy 169 south east of Washago. The Sandhill remains in almost the same spot feeding!
The attached picture while fuzzy was taken with a 500mm lens and is heavily cropped. Sandhill Crane

 

 

Horned Grebe
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 05:33:53 PM by goodyear

Seen late this afternoon off Golden Point (Lake Muskoka) in the bay between the old Bangor Lodge property and One Tree Island (Bracebridge)

 

 

Grouse
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 05:11:37 PM by CatMacLean

Heard my first partridge drumming this afternoon east of Huntsville as well a couple of spring peppers were tuning up.

 

 

Bracebridge Ponds - Wigeons
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 12:18:34 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds we found a pair of American Wigeons in cell 3 close to the shoreline in front of the new plant...still there as of 11:45 a.m.

At least two Rusty Blackbirds were in the wet woods west of cell 4, and a few Swamp Sparrows were in full song. A pair of Blue-winged Teal were on the beaver pond visible from the SW corner of cell 4. A couple Double-crested Cormorants circled low over cell 4, but decided to continue flying west. Two Great Blue Herons were in the wet woods near the NW corner of cell 4. A few Bufflehead and Scaup in cells 1 and 4. A few Wood Ducks in cell 1. A pair of Killdeer were east of cell 1. A small number of Barn Swallows and Tree Swallows were swooping over cell 3. A Merlin did a fly-by west of cell 2.

(note: the new plant is still under construction at the south side of cell 3 and a new gate blocks the access from Kerr Park into the Ponds)
Bracebridge Ponds map (north approx. at top and west at left)

 

 

Eastern Meadowlark
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 08:42:16 AM by janice house

I saw my first meadowlark of the season just now, one flew across the road and the other kept calling from the farm field, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Pine Siskins
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 08:40:02 AM by janice house

5 siskins were in our yard this morning, only stayed for a few minutes

 

 

Re(2): Which Junco Species?, Bala (photos)
Posted on May 3, 2011 at 01:10:04 PM by Barbara Taylor

We had a similar looking one last year...I just called it a "Cassiar type Dark-eyed Junco". After reading lots of discussions about IDing Juncos, I don't think anyone could say with 100% certainty what genes are in some of these birds.

 

 

Re(1): Which Junco Species?, Bala (photos)
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 07:38:28 AM by DebbieAdams

That Junco looks just like the one that I've seen here on Walker's Point.

 

 

Which Junco Species?, Bala (photos)
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 07:23:17 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Just before 7 am this bird arrived again and is only the 3rd time I've seen it. Stalking to the window I got a few images.
They have been lightened .45 of a stop. Canon 7D, 100-400 @400, f5.6 @ 125, ISO 1600. Sharpened but no saturation applied.  photo1  photo2

 

 

Re(1): Hermit Thrush & More
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 08:45:30 AM by Al Sinclair

First Hermit was singing here also, this morning 7:30am.
8km east of Bracebridge.

 

 

Hermit Thrush & More
Posted on April 24, 2011 at 06:14:10 AM by janice house

heard my first thrush this morning at 5:45, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst, yesterday a female northern harrier was cruising the farm field behind the old Dinsmore sheep farm and close to the Tomingas Rd there was a northern watersnake trying to cross the road

 

 

Red-necked Grebe Huntsville
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 08:34:01 PM by BPfrimmer

A Red-necked Grebe was on Hunter's Bay this morning at 10:30. It could be seen from the boat launch along the Hunter's Bay Trail. Turn off Main St in Huntsville onto Yonge St south.

 

 

Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 04:26:12 PM by mmcanally

Just heard Ruby-crowned Kinglets in our back woods here at Britannia Road in Huntsville. Also Brown Creepers, Merlin and Killder.

 

 

Broad-winged Hawk
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 03:29:15 PM by RonS

A noisy one circling low over our pasture field today.
Merkley Road in the Greater Barkway Area

 

White-Throated Sparrow
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 01:29:06 PM by DBurton

A White-Throated Sparrow was singing at BMLSS in Bracebridge Thursday Apr 21

 

 

Savannah Sparrow
Posted on April 22, 2011 at 01:55:50 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there wasn't a lot of activity and very few ducks. A wind-swept Savannah Sparrow was hunkered down in the weeds at the south edge of cell 2 and five Tree Swallows swooped low over cell 3 trying to find something to eat.

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 21 April
Posted on April 22, 2011 at 09:13:54 AM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Apr. 21, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

New snow arrived late in the week so that the ground is covered everywhere
again! However, it will melt soon. The lakes and ponds remain mainly frozen.
More birders in the Park for the OFO trip on April 17 resulted in increased
reports this week, for which a big thanks.

Sightings of interest included:
Spruce Grouse: A displaying male and two females were on the roadway at the
north end of Opeongo Road on April 19.

Wild Turkey: Six were reported at km 6 on Highway 60 on April 19. We often
see them moving into the Park along the highway in April after apparently
wintering outside Algonquin.

Bohemian Waxwing: One was at the Visitor Centre on April 17.

White-winged Crossbill: Heard calling at Cache Lake Marsh on April 17.

New arrivals (with the average date in brackets) included:
April 15:
Fox Sparrow (April 8)

April 16:
Bufflehead (April 12)
Killdeer (April 2)
Vesper Sparrow (April 22)
White-throated Sparrow (April 17)

April 17:
Broad-winged Hawk (April 20)
Wilson's Snipe (April 15)
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (April 10)
Ruby-crowned Kinglet (April 15)
Hermit Thrush (April 16)
Chipping Sparrow (April 19)

April 18:
Northern Harrier (April 5)

April 21:
Brown Thrasher (May 3)

Moose are being seen regularly now at wet areas along Highway
60.

Please report your sightings for our records.

Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

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 along Highway 60 in the Park go from
the West Gate (km 0) to near the East Gate (km 56). Get your park
permit and the park tabloid (with a map of birding locations mentioned
here) at the gates.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 has recent bird sightings and information.
The centre and restaurant are open on weekends from 10 am to 5 pm.,
including Good Friday and Easter Monday.

 

 

Re(2): Junco (photo)
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 02:17:39 PM by DebbieAdams

Thanks for the ID.
It's been a good learning curve for me to discover that there are so many varieties of Juncos.

 

 

Re(1): Junco (photo)
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 01:08:21 PM by Doug Smith

I think you're right Al. I wasn't much aware of this subspecies, but the info. that Barbara Taylor points to in her link on the other junco post is very helpful.

 

 

Re(1): Junco (photo)
Posted on April 23, 2011 at 08:40:18 AM by Al Sinclair

This is possibly a "Cassiar" Junco (cismontanus subspecies of the Slate-colored Junco group)

 

 

Re(1): Junco (photo)
Posted on April 22, 2011 at 05:14:32 PM by Doug Smith

Looking at the brown back and the extent of the pink on the sides I'd say it could be an Oregon subspecies

 

 

Junco (photo)
Posted on April 22, 2011 at 09:09:57 AM by DebbieAdams

After looking at all the varieties of Juncos they are all starting to look the same to me!
Is this photo an Oregon or a Pink-sided version or neither?  photo

 

 

Re(2): Bird count!
Posted on April 21, 2011 at 09:04:48 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

WOW! They sure know where to go, Ted!

 

 

Re(1): Bird count!
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 10:43:06 PM by Ted gardner

You can see more at.....http://t-boneimages.blogspot.com/

 

 

Bird count!
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 10:05:55 PM by Ted gardner

Bad weather and all have brought an amazing amount of activity to our back yard feeders...15 minutes this morning
gave me this list... photo1  photo2
Song Sparrow
Fox Sparrow
Chipping Sparrow
Tree Sparrow
White Throated Sparrow
Dark Eyed Junco
Black capped Chickadee
Blue Jay
Mourning Dove
Gold Finch
Purple Finch
Pine Siskin
Common Redpoll
Robin
Hairy Woodpecker
Downey Woodpecker
White Breasted Nuthatch
Red Breasted Nuthatch
Crow
Starling
Grackle
Cowbird
Red Winged Blackbird
amazing activity...and these pics
(Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(5): ? oregon junco
Posted on April 21, 2011 at 09:03:12 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

The one that I saw here had noticeably pink sides and colour difference between head and wings. I think it was a female according to the links Barb has posted. I didn't see it yesterday and not so far today.

 

 

Re(4): ? oregon junco
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 09:56:06 PM by Doug Smith

I know all the Oregons I saw when I lived out west showed a noticeable contrast in their side and head markings -- it wasn't a subtle difference. But it's always worthwhile checking all of them as they go through.

 

 

Re(3): ? oregon junco
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 04:54:43 PM by Barbara Taylor

Hard to tell from the photo, but doesn't seem to be enough of a contrasting hood. There are some good photos of Oregon Juncos on the following website for comparison if you see the bird again: http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/DEJU.html

Here is a good article by Ron Pittaway describing the sub-species of Dark-eyed Juncos: http://www.jeaniron.ca/2010/darkeyedjuncoRF.pdf

Here is another article by Ron Pittaway with description and photo of a Cassiar Junco form: http://www.jeaniron.ca/2011/cassiarjuncoRF.pdf

 

 

Re(2): ? oregon junco
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 03:18:47 PM by CatMacLean

The picture is poor. The birds hop around so much that this is the best I could do. With the binocs there is a lot more contrast with the brown shoulders.

 

 

Re(1): ? oregon junco
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 03:09:58 PM by Al Sinclair

Don't think so, too little contrast between head and body. Female Slate-colored comes in different shades of brown, that's my guess.

 

 

? oregon junco
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 11:33:38 AM by CatMacLean

photo

 

 

Trumpeter Swans tag #130 and #116 - background info
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 11:08:39 AM by Barbara Taylor

On April 8 Edie posted there were two swans in their bay with wing tag numbers #130 and #116. (location on Georgian Bay at the mouth of the Shebeshekong river just north of Parry Sound)

Here is some background information I just received from Harry Lumsden (thanks Harry!):
---------------
#116 is a female, an adult when banded at La Salle on 3 March 2007. She was at Wye Marsh between 31 March and 2 Apr; back at LaSalle on 15 Dec and there until March 2008; Wye Marsh 16 Apr 2008; 29 Nov 2009 at Sturgeon Bay; 17 Dec La Salle; 14 Jan 2010 Wye Marsh but at La Salle on 6 Feb. No record for the rest of the year. Overwintered 2010/11 at La Salle then north again.

#130 is a male, an adult when caught on 17 March 2007 at Lasalle. He was at Wye Marsh on 2 Apr. No record during the summer but at LaSalle through the winter of 07/08. 6 Dec 2009 at Sturgeon Bay. Probably with 116 but not reported together. He wintered at LaSalle from 17 Dec 2009 to March 2010. No record again until the winter of Dec 2010 to 6 March 2011. On 8 Apr 2011 at Parry Sound at Shebeschekong river.

Thank you for reporting these birds.
Cheers, Harry
---------------

*note: many Trumpeters spend the winter at LaSalle Park in Burlington where several are banded and their tags are documented by Ray and Bev Kingdon and assistants.

 

 

Re(4): Weather, what else?
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 07:03:01 PM by J. Gardner

We have some three or four inches of heavy snow on the ground here in Hurdville, and the birds are all having trouble finding grub today. There 30 or more Tree Sparrows, some of which are forced to use the peanut feeder today.

 

 

Re(3): Weather, what else?
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 04:37:26 PM by FrancesGualtieri

There are about thirty robins hopping around our sodden lawn and gardens, and in the puddles - so they like this easy access to worms! (Vankoughnet)

 

 

Re(2): Weather, what else?
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 12:19:18 PM by Barbara Taylor

A Fox Sparrow was just singing in our back yard. Not sure what he's so happy about with this snowy weather...perhaps he's just glad he didn't continue on his journey any further north. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Weather, what else?
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 09:53:10 AM by DebbieAdams

All the Phoebes that were around last week seem to have left. They must have gone south! (Walker's Point)

 

 

Weather, what else?
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 09:33:52 AM by J. Gardner

Pity the critters. J. Gardner (Hurdville)

 

 

Sapsucker
Posted on April 19, 2011 at 04:29:43 PM by CatMacLean

Saw a pair yellow-bellied sapsuckers this am along with golden and ruby-crowned kinglets. We still have two redpolls at the finch feeder, a flicker in the field and two mallards on our pond in Huntsville. Yesterday behind the high school by the old soccer fields there were several water pipits.

 

 

Re(2): Oregon Junco - helpful websites
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 04:58:18 PM by Barbara Taylor

There are some good photos of Oregon Juncos on the following website for comparison: http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/DEJU.html

Here is a good article by Ron Pittaway describing the sub-species of Dark-eyed Juncos: http://www.jeaniron.ca/2010/darkeyedjuncoRF.pdf

Here is another article by Ron Pittaway with description and photo of a Cassiar Junco form: http://www.jeaniron.ca/2011/cassiarjuncoRF.pdf

 

 

Re(1): Oregon Junco, Bala
Posted on April 20, 2011 at 09:51:49 AM by DebbieAdams

I'm sure there's an Oregon Junco here too. At first I thought, nah, it can't be. I never see anything rare or unusual. Then after reading your post I went looking for the bird again and I'm quite sure, 99.9%, sure it's an Oregon Junco. (Walker's Point)

 

 

Oregon Junco, Bala
Posted on April 19, 2011 at 11:34:59 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I was pretty sure yesterday but positive today that an Oregon Junco is visiting a tray feeder on my second floor balcony. I am trying for photographs but it doesn't stay long. I thought at first it was a female but realize it is more highly coloured than the female would be. Also, the other male juncos are being really territorial about the feeder and I don't think I have seen more than one or two females around. I saw it only once yesterday and once, so far, today.

 

 

Loon
Posted on April 18, 2011 at 02:45:15 PM by DebbieAdams

There's a Loon blissfully floating in Walker's Bay (Lake Muskoka). Thankfully, the ice went out on Sunday and now the waterfowl can return. Also saw some Cormorants today too. (Walker's Point)

 

 

Re(1): WW Crossbills
Posted on April 21, 2011 at 04:39:49 PM by janice house

small flock flew over this morning while on doggy walk, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

WW Crossbills
Posted on April 17, 2011 at 10:52:40 PM by DBurton

WW Crossbills chirping on Lorne Street in Gravenhurst today. Very rare in this habitat.

 

 

OFO Algonquin Park trip: 17 April
Posted on April 17, 2011 at 10:12:55 PM by Ontbirds

This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Apr. 17, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

An enthusiastic group of about 60 keen birders persevered in the snow
squalls, occasional sunny breaks and frequently windy conditions today in
pursuit of Algonquin's boreal species. Unfortunately, we came up a little
short. We were unable to locate a Spruce Grouse, I believe for the first
time in the 22 years of this trip. I suspect the wind distorted our playback
efforts and the winter conditions may have discouraged a response. Our only
success with the boreal target species was Gray Jay.

Some first arrivals here this spring were noted, including a Broad-winged
Hawk, a Wilson's Snipe and two Hermit Thrushes. A Bohemian Waxwing in flight
at the Visitor Centre and a Vesper Sparrow along the grassy margin of
Opeongo Road were much appreciated. The Vesper Sparrow was originally found
and photographed yesterday.

I want to thank all who attended the trip and made a difficult day so much
fun. I am particularly grateful to my co-leader Kevin Clute who worked
tirelessly slogging through often deep snow and ice water trying to find a
Spruce Grouse at five locations, to no avail. Maybe next year.

Ron Tozer

 

 

Sandhill Crane still there!
Posted on April 17, 2011 at 04:02:07 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

The sandhill crane we reported last week is still feeding on the east side of Brooks sideroad south east of Washago. Cheers Terry

 

 

Re(1): Fox Sparrow
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 08:05:58 PM by diannawolfe

We also had four Fox Sparrows scratching for seed under our feeders this morning. (Kilworthy)

 

 

Fox Sparrow
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 06:02:33 PM by michaelhatton

First Fox Sparrow seen on our property was hugging the ground with all feathers puffed up in the cold, driving rain. Leonard Lake.

 

 

Wood Frogs and Spring peepers
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 12:52:56 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

In our local sand pit we heard wood frogs quacking last night and a full on chorus of spring peepers calling. 10km east of Washago! Cheers Terry

 

 

Re(1): 24 species at our feeders
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 02:09:53 PM by Al Sinclair

Busy day here also: Fox, Song, Tree, Junco. Goldfinch, Purple, Redpoll all together. Grackles and Redwings and Doves.
no pigeons or starlings this far from town.
8 km east of Bracebridge on 118E.

 

 

24 species at our feeders
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 12:40:42 PM by goodyear

Our backyard feeders have been inundated with birds the last couple of days. Today we have a very noisy flock of 40+ Tree Sparrows, 10+ Juncos, 13 Evening Grosbeaks, Grackles, Red-winged Blackbirds, Brown-headed Cowbirds, Starlings, Blue Jays, Pine Siskins, Goldfinches, a pair of Purple Finches, 1 Redpoll, both species of nuthatch, Pigeons and Mourning Doves, Flicker and Hairy Woodpeckers, and some Song and White-throated Sparrows. They are eating us out of house and home!! Last night at the Lagoons we had a Merlin swoop low over our heads. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): White-throated sparrow
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 09:45:40 AM by Barbara Taylor

A White-throated Sparrow showed up in our yard this morning too. Also a few Dark-eyed Juncos, an American Tree Sparrow, and two Fox Sparrows. (Bracebridge)

 

 

White-throated sparrow
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 09:07:45 AM by CatMacLean

We have a white-throated sparrow this am. We still have several redpolls including one Hoary. (Huntsville)

 

 

Re(2): Purple Finches, Bala
Posted on April 17, 2011 at 07:17:12 AM by DebbieAdams

Just spotted a male and female at our feeder.
Walker's Point

 

 

Re(1): Purple Finches, Bala
Posted on April 16, 2011 at 05:52:40 PM by tedthevideoman

Had 3 males show at our place today! 120 meadow hieghts Bracebridge

 

 

Purple Finches, Bala
Posted on April 15, 2011 at 10:28:49 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Three male Purple Finches put in an appearance today. Lots of juncos the last few days but only a couple of tree sparrows.
Yesterday a pair of phoebes mated.

 

 

Flicker
Posted on April 15, 2011 at 06:24:45 PM by CatMacLean

We have a flicker around today as well as 10 redpolls still and some kinglets in the bush. (Huntsville)

 

 

Purple Finch
Posted on April 15, 2011 at 01:36:26 PM by janice house

I saw a male at the feeder at lunch time today feeding with some goldfinch's (Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst)

 

 

Fox Sparrows
Posted on April 15, 2011 at 09:32:04 AM by Barbara Taylor

Don Bailey reports there were two Fox Sparrows in their yard this morning. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 14 April
Posted on April 15, 2011 at 08:19:05 AM by Ontbirds

This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Apr. 14, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Major melting of snow this week resulted in rivers rising to flood level.
However, there is still relatively little open water. Ice-free areas in
lakes where rivers and creeks enter are only slowly expanding in size.

An Owl Survey during the evening of April 12 from the West Gate to
km 18 along Highway 60 produced single Barred Owls at the West
Gate and km 2, but no Northern Saw-whet Owls. This was not entirely
unexpected since small mammal populations are low following very
poor tree seed crops last year.

Boreal species reported this week included:
Spruce Grouse: Two were seen on Spruce Bog Boardwalk on
April 9.

Black-backed Woodpecker: A male was on a utility pole
at km 8 on Highway 60 on April 8.

Boreal Chickadee: One was reported at Spruce
Bog Boardwalk on April 9.

New arrivals (with the average date in brackets) are shown below.
Most are later than normal, as expected in this late spring.

April 8: Rough-legged Hawk (March 25)
April 9: Winter Wren (April 7)
April 10: Belted Kingfisher (April 9)
April 10: Northern Flicker (April 8)
April 10: Winter Wren (April 7)
April 10: Golden-crowned Kinglet (April 3)
April 11: Green-winged Teal (April 12)
April 11: Eastern Phoebe (April 6)
April 11: Purple Finch (April 4)
April 13: Common Goldeneye (April 7)
April 13: Pied-billed Grebe (April 13)
April 14: Northern Pintail (Rare)
April 14: Ring-necked Duck (April 8)
April 14: Common Loon (April 14)
April 14: Belted Kingfisher (April 9)

Moose are being seen regularly now at wet areas along Highway
60.
Please report your sightings for our records.

Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

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 along Highway 60 in the Park go from
the West Gate (km 0) to near the East Gate (km 56). Get your park
permit and the park tabloid (with a map of birding locations mentioned
here) at the gates.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 has recent bird sightings and information.
The centre and restaurant are open on weekends from 10 am to 5 pm.

 

 

Redpoll Redux
Posted on April 14, 2011 at 07:47:08 PM by Al Sinclair

For the record: The redpoll photo I posted on March 27 is most likely a "Greater" Common Redpoll, Carduelis flammea rostrata and not a dark 1st year Hornemann's Hoary Redpoll as I opined in the original post. There is photo in OFO News October 2010 (OFO=Ontario Field Ornithologists) that matches my bird very well.
BTW We still had 10 Redpolls here today but don't expect to see them much longer. It has been the best year for Redpolls in Muskoka in many years.

 

 

1st Warbler
Posted on April 14, 2011 at 05:17:16 PM by DBurton

A Pine Warbler was on Lorne Street in Gravenhust April 13th (yesterday)

 

 

Bird Board Update
Posted on April 14, 2011 at 01:36:28 PM by Barbara Taylor

Thanks to everyone for all your reports. All posts for January thru March are now available in the Archived Reports. If you haven't visited the archives in a while, you might be interested in the "google search" tool I've added at the bottom of that webpage...it only searches the Bird Board archives.

Go to my earlier Spring Migration post for a list of migration maps and other websites that will let you see what's heading our way.
Check out my list of Other Nature Websites for websites helpful in identifying birds, dragonflies, butterflies, wildflowers, mushrooms, and more.

Need help posting photos? Find instructions and do a test post on the Nature Photos Board.
New to the Bird Board? See the Posting Guidelines for helpful tips about using the board.

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.

Barbara Taylor
email: muskoka_birder@hotmail.com

 

 

Pileateds and assorted wildlife
Posted on April 14, 2011 at 09:18:15 AM by Barbara Taylor

After a few days absence, the female Pileated Woodpecker that visited our suet cage all winter was back this morning. A male Pileated flew in behind her and patiently waited while she fed, then both flew off to the south-east. It is now a race to see who finishes off the last tiny bit of suet attached to the pine tree...the raccoons, the woodpeckers, or a bear fresh out of hibernation. Our bird feeders have already been shut down just in case - has anyone seen a bear yet?

Over the past week we've had a doe visiting our yard along with her two "fawns" from last year...they really enjoy nibbling on our Moss Phlox until I catch them at it. Yesterday there was a rabbit feeding on the same plant! At least we got a good look at the rabbit, which was still changing from its winter white into its summer brown coat. There are now at least three female Red Squirrels that have given birth to their young somewhere out behind our house. That should give the neighbourhood Barred Owls something to look forward to. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Eastern Bluebird
Posted on April 14, 2011 at 06:38:15 AM by mmcanally

Yesterday I watched an Eastern Bluebird male on Greer Road in Port Sydney.
This morning there is a White-throated Sparrow singing near my house on Britannia Road in Huntsville.

 

 

Yellow Rumped and Sapsucker
Posted on April 13, 2011 at 06:13:00 PM by RonS

Yellow-rumped warbler and sapsucker in our woods yesterday (April 12) along Merkley Road. Also a spring peeper.
Regards,  Ron

 

 

Long Tailed Ducks in Port Sydney
Posted on April 13, 2011 at 05:44:35 PM by jim griffin

There is a pair of Long Tailed Ducks on the river south of the road 10 bridge as this is being posted.

 

 

pike spawning
Posted on April 13, 2011 at 10:45:00 AM by John Challis

Yesterday in the shallows in the Green River, and upstream in the swamp behind our house in Washago, the pike showed up for their spawning. It has a prehistoric feel to it, seeing these creatures' fins and backs swirling in the water as they loll around.
Also watched three yellow-bellied sapsuckers playing hide and seek through the trees in our back yard.
A pair of wood ducks were roosting in a treetop this morning.
Heard a white-throated sparrow this morning, too.
And after Sunday's rain, the chorus of spring peepers has been instantaneous and obliterating all other sounds at night. Wonderful to have it back!

 

 

Hunter's Bay - Waterfowl
Posted on April 13, 2011 at 09:41:30 AM by Kip Daynard

The ice has been receding over past days but began seriously breaking up off Hunter's Bay yesterday. This brought waterfowl in greater numbers including my first loons of the year yesterday (at least 2), many Common Mergansers and this morning a flock of about 6 Buffleheads. Phoebe arrived in our yard today.

My neighbour has been tracking ice break-up on Hunter's Bay for 30 years and apparently it almost invariably comes off between the dates of Apr 12 and 16th. Last year was an exception when it was almost 2 weeks earlier.
Kip

 

 

Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on April 12, 2011 at 02:47:22 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning all the cells were free of ice, but the water levels are fairly high so no mudflats. Numbers of ducks are still very low. New arrivals were four Lesser Scaup and a pair of Ring-necked Ducks in cell 1. A Northern Flicker was calling from the woods north of cell 4.

 

 

Re(1): Tree Swallows
Posted on April 12, 2011 at 02:39:16 PM by Barbara Taylor

Yesterday there were reports of fairly large numbers of Tree Swallows at Point Pelee and at the Beamer Hawkwatch in Grimsby, so they are probably still working their way northward. Recent bad storms south of the border may have held back many migrating birds. Keep your fingers crossed...you may get another wave of them yet.

 

 

Tree Swallows
Posted on April 12, 2011 at 01:37:04 PM by J. Gardner

Tree Swallows seem to be in greater decline this year. We had at the height of our population (some 15 years ago) up to 35 boxes of nesting birds. This year (to the present) we seem to have 4 or 5 pairs. Very troubling trend. J. Gardner

 

 

Re(2): Hunters Bay
Posted on April 12, 2011 at 05:09:59 PM by CatMacLean

Not a cowbird. I know their habits and sounds. I looked for them today but they were gone.

 

 

Re(1): Hunters Bay
Posted on April 12, 2011 at 08:28:13 AM by J. Gardner

Perhaps the small brown-grey bird described is a female cowbird. Heaven knows, there are a few around this time of year. J. Gardner

 

 

Re(1): Hunters Bay
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 08:34:48 PM by Al Sinclair

Doesn't sound like American Pipits, usually seen here in fields or sewage ponds in May. A bit early I would say to see several.

 

 

Re(1): Hunters Bay
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 06:41:05 PM by tedthevideoman

American Water Pipits...

 

 

Hunters Bay
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 04:33:54 PM by CatMacLean

Lots birds this am along Hunter's Bay, Common Goldeneyes and Mergansers as well as song and tree sparrows, goldfinches and two ospreys.This afternoon I saw several small brown/gray birds ( bigger than a sparrow but smaller than a robin) hopping along a small stream. Could they be water pipits?

 

 

Flicker
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 01:40:36 PM by J. Gardner

Just watching a Northern Flicker picking through the debris under a row of spruce trees. This touch of spring has brought in a number of birds, hooray. J. Gardner Hurdville

 

 

Re(1): Bent River Birds
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 06:38:58 PM by tedthevideoman

A flock of Robins ?

 

 

Bent River Birds
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 12:59:29 PM by janice house

my brother called this morning, amazed by all the birds singing, a flock of at least 50 robins in the field, lots of woodpeckers including the pileated

 

 

American Bittern
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 11:48:14 AM by janice house

Geoff saw a bittern this morning in the swamp between Laycox Rd & Tomingas Rd (Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst)

 

 

Spring Arrivals to NE Muskoka
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 10:43:07 AM by lauragilmour

In north east Muskoka (between Dwight and Dorset) we had a variety of arrivals in the last week. American Robin, American Woodcock, Great Blue Heron, Juncos, Eastern Pheobe, Mallards, Canadian Geese and Tree Sparrows.

 

 

Waterfowl at the mouth of the Muskoka River near Patterson Kaye Lodge
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 10:41:09 AM by goodyear

Late yesterday afternoon - approx. 100 - 150 ducks, mostly Ring-necked and Goldeneye, with Mallards and Black, several pairs of Hooded and Common Mergansers, a lone Wood Duck, and 3 Loons. An Osprey patrolled the open water. Herring and Ring-billed Gulls loafing on the ice. Several swallows (too far out to i.d - Tree?)were flying over the open water and sitting on the ice.

 

 

Eastern Phoebe, Bala
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 07:51:57 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I was waiting for one! Saw my first here at home just now.

 

 

Blanding's Turtle
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 11:02:25 PM by Diannawolfe

There was an early Blanding's Turtle basking on a mud flat at the Torrance Barrens on Saturday afternoon.

 

 

Brown Thrasher
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 06:31:11 PM by janice house

Geoff saw one in our yard today, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Redpolls & Juncos, Bala
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 05:54:07 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Not a single redpoll seen today but added one only junco.

 

 

sparrows
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 04:16:46 PM by CatMacLean

We still have one or two Redpolls but the huge flock that we had, moved on overnight to be replaced by tree sparrows and juncos. I also heard a Winter Wren this am in Huntsville. We have a nesting pair of Pileated's and the female comes to our suet feeder on a regular basis. Yesterday we heard and saw our resident Broad-winged hawk.

 

 

Sandhill Cranes
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 10:03:12 AM by Terry & Marion Whittam

We saw 2 Sandhill cranes on the east side of Brooks sideroad near hwy 169, south east of Washago. In addition a Sandhill circled our lake yesterday morning like a hawk flying on a thermo........ kept calling and calling.... suspect he was looking for another Sandhill. Cheers Terry

 

 

Barred Owl
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 09:38:30 AM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Multiple Barred owls were calling all night 10km east of Washago! Cheers Terry

 

 

American Woodcock
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 06:22:43 AM by janice house

I heard my first woodcock of the season twittering this morning at 5:40am, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Trumpeter Swans at Muskoka Falls
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 03:25:06 PM by Al Sinclair

A photo of 5 Trumpeters was posted on the weather network. Has anyone else seen them? Does anyone know the person who posted the photo? Please email me privately if you know how to contact them.   http://www.theweathernetwork.com/your_weather/details/620/4196455/5/caon0077/plpcities/?ref=ugc_city_thumbs

 

 

Osprey in Port Sydney
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 01:51:26 PM by jim griffin

had an osprey over the river at the road 10 bridge today about noon.

 

 

Re(1): Winter Wren
Posted on April 12, 2011 at 03:47:44 PM by lauragilmour

We heard our first Winter Wrens in Dwight yesterday.

 

 

Winter Wren
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 12:17:42 PM by diannawolfe

We heard our first Winter Wren of the year singing on our property earlier this morning. He appears to already be paired up as two sets of call notes could be heard, also. (Kilworthy)

 

 

Re(1): Common Loon, Bala
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 08:12:03 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

8:10 am, a loon flew over my place calling and heading north.

 

 

Common Loon
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 08:08:26 AM by janice house

Geoff saw a lone bird in Allport Bay Thursday (Beaumont Dr Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): eastern phoebe (photo)
Posted on April 11, 2011 at 10:47:28 AM by lauragilmour

We are in the same area, just near Sea Breeze Road, and recorded our first Pheobe the same day.

 

 

eastern phoebe (photo)
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 10:11:32 PM by algonquin

this was taken yesterday just south of Dwight on hwy 35
the first of the flycatchers to turn up,not much in the way of food yet !!   photo
gary

 

 

Pied-billed Grebe
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 05:52:17 PM by tedthevideoman

Took a drive today along Mathiasville rd with my Pop
and saw all of the regulars, but we also spotted a very early Pied-Billed grebe....ahh! spring is here!...shortly after we spotted a pair of Snow Buntings skipping across the river and land on a dead snag. This may be a 1st...Pied Billed and Snow bunting in the same post?

 

 

Re(5): Swan 130
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 05:44:17 PM by EdieOutramverite

Thanks Al, I have sent the information on to Wyemarsh, I will reply to this posting when I hear something. They are still in the bay this evening.

 

 

Re(4): Swan 130
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 03:18:56 PM by Al Sinclair

Edie, You can report the swans at the website below. They will reply with info on where they were tagged, there age and sex, and any other recent sightings of the birds.
Let us know what you find out.
http://www.wyemarsh.com/swan_sighting.html

 

 

Re(3): Swan 130
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 09:28:37 AM by EdieOutramverite

We now know that both swans have yello tags, #130 and #116

 

 

Re(2): Swan 130
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 08:20:26 PM by EdieOutramverite

Hello,
thank you for the information, there are two yello tags one on each wing. So far we only have long distant photos. We can however see them well with our telescope. It is 8:15 on Friday evening and they are still in our bay, they have been here at least since 1 p.m. We are hoping that if they are still here in the morning we may be able to get closer photos. I will send one of the photos that we have by email.

 

 

Re(1): Swan 130
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 07:27:08 PM by girlsandmom

Hi there!
I am assuming the tag on it's wing was yellow? Wing tags, along with leg bands, are used for identifying and tracking. I am thinking that perhaps the swan is tagged L30. Would love to see if you have pictures! Did you notice a leg band on either of the birds? If so, which leg?

 

 

Swan 130
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 03:30:03 PM by EdieOutramverite

Today two swans have arrived in our bay. It is very exciting for us because we have never seen swans here before. They have been here for the better part of the day. One has a number card on it's wing of #130. We live on Georgian Bay at the mouth of the Shebeshekong river just north of Parry Sound. Does anyone know anything about this number on the swan?

 

 

Purple Finch
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 02:38:39 PM by Barbara Taylor

Just had a male Purple Finch at our feeder...first one this year. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Saw-whet owl
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 01:47:13 PM by gaylecarlyle

Last night we heard a saw-whet owl behind our house in the wetland/bush area in Washago.
At about 10:30pm.
I heard one last week as well on the other side of the road.

 

 

Re(1): snow bunting
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 04:08:50 PM by J. Gardner

Had a bunting like this a few years ago. It hung around long after the flock left, and one day, I found its little body in the leaves alongside the driveway. Hurdville. J. Gardner

 

 

snow bunting
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 01:41:47 PM by gaylecarlyle

While out walking our puppy at lunchtime, I had a small bird land in front of me and allow fairly close contact before flying away.
It looked like a snow bunting but I had thought they would all be gone by now.
Could this one have been ill with something?

 

 

Re(1): Juncos, Chipping Sparrows & ???(photo)
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 01:39:24 PM by Dawn Sherman

Is it a pair of Common Mergansers?

 

 

Juncos, Chipping Sparrows & ???(photo)
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 12:50:26 PM by DebbieAdams

Juncos and Chipping Sparrows arrived here late this morning. So did several ducks that I can't identify. The photo is out of focus but it's the best I could do using tele-lens. Maybe someone can identify these birds?   photo
Our bay along with most of Lake Muskoka is still frozen, so ducks are taking advantage of boathouses with bubblers for open water. (Walker's Point)

 

 

Re(1): Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on April 9, 2011 at 01:47:38 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning cell 2 was completely free of ice and the north end of cell 1 was open water. There were more Wood Ducks in cell 2 today, but the Hooded Mergansers have moved over to the beaver pond that can be seen from the south-west corner of cell 4. A Belted Kingfisher was chattering away inbetween his dives into that same beaver pond, and the Great Blue Heron was once again in the flooded area west of cell 4.

 

 

Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on April 8, 2011 at 11:53:32 AM by Barbara Taylor

All the ponds were still iced in this morning except cell 2 which had a fair bit of open water. There were about ten Buffleheads, four Hooded Mergansers, one Wood Duck, eight Mallards, and six Canada Geese at the south end of cell 2. Several Song Sparrows and Red-winged Blackbirds had already staked out their territories around the edges of the ponds. A Turkey Vulture soared low over cell 4, a Great Blue Heron was in the flooded area west of cell 4, and a couple of Killdeer were calling as they circled over cell 3.

(note: the new plant is still under construction at the south side of cell 3 and a new gate blocks the access from Kerr Park into the Ponds)
Bracebridge Ponds map (north approx. at top and west at left):  http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y175/naturepics/birdboard/pondsmap.jpg

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 7 April
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 09:39:21 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Apr. 7, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

More snow melted and areas of open water in creeks and rivers
increased this week. However, all lakes and ponds remain frozen
to the shore and there is deep snow everywhere except on
south-facing slopes, clearings and bogs. Some migrants
were held back by colder than normal temperatures and
the scarcity of bare ground and open water.

The following may interest birders planning a visit:

Spruce Grouse: Two were 50 m off the trail north of the register
box on Spruce Bog Boardwalk on April 5.

Wild Turkey: A male was at the Visitor Centre on April 6 and 7
and others were reported along Highway 60 this week.

Black-backed Woodpecker: One was between posts 6 and 7 on
Spruce Bog Boardwalk on April 2 and another was along
Highway 60 at km 8 on April 3.

Boreal Chickadee: Two were between posts 6 and 7 on Spruce
Bog Boardwalk on April 2.

Hoary Redpoll: One was with the smaller numbers of Common
Redpolls remaining at the Visitor Centre on April 5.

Evening Grosbeak: This species was back at the Algonquin Inn
feeders near the Highway 60 bridge at Oxtongue Lake west of
Algonquin Park this week.

New arrivals included:
April 1: Wood Duck
April 2: American Woodcock.
April 4: Great Blue Heron, Sharp-shinned Hawk
April 5: Herring Gull, American Tree Sparrow
April 6: Eastern Meadowlark
April 7: Turkey Vulture

Please report your sightings for our records.

Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

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 along Highway 60 in the Park go from
the West Gate (km 0) to near the East Gate (km 56). Get your park
permit and the park tabloid (with a map of birding locations mentioned
here) at the gates.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 has recent bird sightings and information.
The centre and restaurant are open on weekends from 10 am to 5 pm.

 

 

New arrival
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 05:27:07 PM by CatMacLean

Heard a Phoebe this afternoon singing on East Browns Rd Huntsville.

 

 

Re(2): large Brown/Orange Butterfly Flying
Posted on April 10, 2011 at 06:27:10 AM by janice house

we had one fly through the yard yesterday around noon, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Re(1): large Brown/Orange Butterfly Flying
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 10:31:03 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Thanks Al & June,
I did a presentation for the Baysville Horticultural Society tonight and 3 people mentioned seeing a brown/orange butterfly today!
Quite a treat!

 

 

Re(1): large Brown/Orange Butterfly Flying
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 03:19:46 PM by J. Gardner

I just freed a Compton Tortoiseshell from the garage, where it was flapping on the windowsill. Hurdville. J. Gardner

 

 

Re(1): large Brown/Orange Butterfly Flying
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 03:11:35 PM by Al Sinclair

Could be or a Compton Tortoiseshell

 

 

large Brown/Orange Butterfly Flying
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 02:00:11 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I just saw a large brown/orange butterfly flying around my place. Would it be an Eastern Comma?

 

 

Peregrine Falcons - eggs!
Posted on April 7, 2011 at 10:26:15 AM by Barbara Taylor

I always feel like spring has truly arrived when the Peregrines begin laying their eggs. You now have a good chance of seeing the Peregrine Falcons on their nest ledge in Hamilton since they have 3 eggs! Go to the webcam page at: http://falcons.hamiltonnature.org/

Other news and webcams for Peregrine Falcons can be found at: http://www.peregrine-foundation.ca/.

 

 

Brereton Field Naturalist's Club 60th Anniversary
Posted on April 5, 2011 at 02:05:46 PM by BruceWilson

An update on our 60th Anniversary week events starting Tuesday May 24 and ending on Sunday May 29. There are two field trips planned for each day during the week, except Thursday, and two weekend trips. Details of the trips and a downloadable brochure can be found on our web site. All trips are at no cost and are open to the public.

The highlight of the week will be a gala dinner to be held at the Georgian College Dining Room. Well-known nature photographer, film-maker, educator, and natural history author Michael Runtz will be the guest speaker at the dinner. Tickets for the dinner are $45/person and are on sale now. You can order tickets by clicking on the link below.

I hope many of you can join us for all or some of the events.

Thanks for your time.
Brereton Field Naturalist's Club 60th Anniversary

 

 

Kingfisher + Peeper
Posted on April 4, 2011 at 09:02:05 AM by GayleCarlyle

We saw and heard our first kingfisher yesterday at our property in Washago.
And we heard our first spring peeper at about 4pm in the wetland behind our house.
Nice to hear frogs again!

 

 

Re(1): Redpolls
Posted on April 4, 2011 at 10:57:39 AM by Terry & Marion Whittam

We are down to just 1 redpoll, 10km east of Washago....... Cheers Terry

 

 

Redpolls
Posted on April 4, 2011 at 08:22:11 AM by CatMacLean

This morning we have a flock of 30-40 Redpolls at the feeders. (Huntsville)

 

 

Great Blue Herons, Bala
Posted on April 3, 2011 at 07:29:37 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Two Great Blue Herons just flew by my house!

 

 

Redpolls (photo)
Posted on April 3, 2011 at 04:43:27 PM by DebbieAdams

Just when I thought all the Redpolls had left, a new group of about 20 arrived.
Walker's Point.  photo

 

 

Bald Eagle
Posted on April 3, 2011 at 08:49:25 AM by janice house

An immature eagle flew by the corner of 118 West and Butter & Egg road yesterday late in the afternoon

 

 

Killdeer
Posted on April 3, 2011 at 08:47:31 AM by janice house

I spotted my first killdeer this morning in the farm field across from the house running by several Canada geese, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 31 March
Posted on April 2, 2011 at 06:31:11 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Apr. 1, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Considerable melting of snow occurred during the last two days but it is
still knee-deep almost everywhere in the forest and the only open water is
in creeks and rivers where there is a current.

The first drumming Ruffed Grouse this spring was reported at Mew Lake
on March 26. The average first date of hearing Ruffed Grouse drumming in
Algonquin is April 10, so this is a little early. Some drumming logs are
becoming exposed now as snow depth decreases.

Bald Eagle: An adult was just west of the West Gate on March 25.

Red Crossbill: Three were reported on Arowhon Road at about km 4 on
March 28.

Flocks of Common Redpolls persisted where seed was provided, including
the Visitor Centre feeders, Spruce Bog Boardwalk and Opeongo Road. A
few Hoary Redpolls were noted among them.

New arrivals this week included:

March 26: Merlin, Common Merganser and Common Grackle.
March 29: Hooded Merganser
March 30: American Black Duck


As reported last week, the provision of seed and suet at the Visitor Centre
and Spruce Bog Boardwalk feeders will be ended on April 1 in order to
remove a potential attraction for black bears when they become active soon.

Please report your sightings for our records.

Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

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 along Highway 60 in the Park go from
the West Gate (km 0) to near the East Gate (km 56). Get your park
permit and the park tabloid (with a map of birding locations mentioned
here) at the gates.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 has recent bird sightings and information.
The centre and restaurant are open on weekends from 10 am to 5 pm.

 

 

Algonquin Park Redpolls and Bracebridge Harris' Sparrow - Wed. March 30th
Posted on April 2, 2011 at 06:27:59 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Andrew Keaveney on ONTBIRDS (Mar. 31, 2011) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Hello Ontbirders. Sorry for the tardy posting, I should have gotten to this yesterday night.

A long day was spent looking mostly at redpolls at Algonquin Prov. Park yesterday (Wed. March 30th) from about 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Josh Vandermuelen was also birding with me.

Spruce Bog Boardwalk (9 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.) - approx. 15 flammea Common Redpolls (parking lot/trailhead), 1 prob. exilipes Hoary Redpoll (parking lot/trailhead), 1 Boreal Chickadee (feeding station).

Visitor Centre (10:15 a.m. to 12 p.m.) - approx. 150 Common Redpolls (mostly flammea with at least 2 rostrata identified), 3 very well seen (scope views) exilipes Hoary Redpolls. Returning in the afternoon to the Visitor Centre (1:30 p.m. to 2 p.m.) we saw ONLY flammea Common Redpolls at the feeder with a slight decrease in overall redpoll numbers.

Opeongo Road (12:30 p.m to 1 p.m.) - 8 Common Redpolls at the small parking area along with 2 Gray Jays. Another flock of 30 redpolls flew by overhead. A single Black-backed Woodpecker.

***Notes on the Hoary Redpolls: While the main purpose of this trip was to look for Hornemann's (hornemanni) Hoary Redpolls it was nevertheless nice to see some Southern (exilipes) Hoary Redpolls. These redpolls were relatively easy to pick out amongst the many commons by their stubby, shorter, higher-angled bills and their thick-necked bodies. They also all showed "puffy" bodies... clearly caused by the way they would hold their body feathers out. There were NO redpolls seen that came close to the features of Hornemann's. Of note was the apparent larger size of the 3 Hoary's below the feeders. They also appeared to all be female birds with no very white/frosty individuals. They did have very clean white or virtually unstreaked undertail coverts too. It was interesting to see the rediculous variation in flammea Common Redpolls - some displayed a very frosty looking background plumage to their body feathers while others were more heavily streaked. All of the Common Redpolls showed the more elongated, shorter-angled bill profiles. One has to remember that all of these field marks are minute and were sometimes only visible at close range, viewed with a spotting scope or very good binoculars.

The Visitor Centre feeders will cease to be filled as of tomorrow which could make the local redpoll flock diminish rather quickly.

*** If anyone knows where there is a HORNEMANN'S HOARY REDPOLL coming to a feeder at the moment I would GREATLY appreciate the information. I have been unsuccessful at twitching this bird anywhere in Ontario this winter...

Also, I am sure the the OBRC would very much appreciate records (including photos alongside other redpolls) of this very rare subspecies that has appeared at several feeders in Ontario this winter.

We also checked out the long-staying Harris' Sparrow in Bracebridge. The bird is now singing and I even spent a good 10 min. whistling back and forth to it - a very neat experience!

Directions (as per Ron tozer):
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 along Highway 60 in the Park go from the West Gate (km 0)
to near the East Gate (km 56). Get your park permit and the park tabloid
(with a map of birding locations mentioned
here) at the gates.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 has recent bird sightings, feeders, and
information. The centre and restaurant are open on weekends from 10 am to 5
pm.

Harris' Sparrow:
South Monk Drive is west of Bracebridge off Hwy 118W.
Search for "1150 South Monck Drive, Bracebridge, ON" on google maps

 

 

phoebe
Posted on April 2, 2011 at 03:33:38 PM by John Challis

Heard calling in downtown Washago this morning, our first phoebe. This is a couple of days earlier than past seasons for phoebes.

 

 

Sandhill Crane
Posted on April 2, 2011 at 03:28:02 PM by goodyear

At noon today, while lounging on the bridge and enjoying the sun at Henry Marsh, a single Sandhill Crane flew overhead and "garoooed" as it flew north.  (Bracebridge)

 

 

Our 1st Butterfly Bracebridge
Posted on April 2, 2011 at 01:14:14 PM by Al Sinclair

A Compton Tortoiseshell flew around the yard today at noon and landed briefly on some dead leaves.
8km east of Bracebridge

 

 

Song Sparrow
Posted on April 1, 2011 at 08:04:50 PM by Dawn sherman

Song Sparrow on the Hunter's Bay Trail in Huntsville today.

 

 

Mourning Cloak
Posted on April 1, 2011 at 01:37:03 PM by GayleCarlyle

I know it isn't a bird but I was quite thrilled today to see my first butterfly of the year, a mourning cloak, flitting across a farm field near Orillia.