Muskoka Bird Board - Archived Reports from October - December 2016
 
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Evening Grosbeaks, Covered Bridge, Bracebridge
Posted on December 31, 2016 at 01:23:51 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Gwen and Gerry DeForest had between 15-20 Evening Grosbeaks visit their ornamental crab tree a couple of times this morning. They were chased away by a grey squirrel. Likely in the area someplace!

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 29 December
Posted on December 30, 2016 at 02:59:56 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 29, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

The Visitor Centre at km 43 will be open daily during the period of December
27 to January 8, from 9 am to 5 pm. The feeders there are continuing to
attract numerous birds.

The female Wild Turkey is still coming to the Visitor Centre parking lot
feeder, but the immature male Red-winged Blackbird was last reported at the
feeders on December 22.

Moose continue to be observed regularly along the highway. Be careful
driving, especially at night.

WINTER FINCHES
Fewer birders resulted in fewer reports this week, but there still seems to
be fairly good variety of species.

Pine Grosbeak: A few were reported along the highway.

Red Crossbill: Watch for them on the highway seeking sand and salt. For
example, five flocks were seen between the West Gate and Smoke Lake on
Christmas Day, with the largest containing about 25 birds.

White-winged Crossbill: Small flocks continue to be observed, including
three individuals at Spruce Bog Boardwalk on December 23.

American Goldfinch: Up to 50 came to the Visitor Centre feeders this week.

Evening Grosbeak: As many as 140 were counted at the Visitor Centre feeders.
They are most numerous early in the morning.

Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).

Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

 

 

Red-tailed Hawk
Posted on December 30, 2016 at 02:10:54 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning a Red-Tailed Hawk went soaring over "the dip" along the trail east of Henry Marsh. Several Chickadees gave the alarm or I might have missed it. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Cooper's Hawk
Posted on December 29, 2016 at 10:30:04 AM by Barbara Taylor

A Cooper's Hawk just flew into our yard and was actively hunting for a meal. A Red Squirrel had darted under the brush pile and there were no birds on the feeders, so the hawk moved through the pine trees searching for hidden prey. After a few minutes with no success it flew off to the north towards Daleman Dr. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 29, 2016 at 01:26:26 PM by J. Gardner

In the area of Killdeer Crescent and Tamarack we have had murmurations of Bohemian Waxwings numbering over 100 several times each day since Boxing Day. Don't know what the attraction is, but they are a treat to watch wheeling around the neighbourhood.   (Bracebridge)   J. Gardner

 

 

Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 29, 2016 at 10:16:20 AM by Leslie

A flock of 40 just landed in my Japanese Plum tree (that's what they call them around here - I'm not positive mind you!). The snow removal crew arrived almost immediately and they were gone. This is at Shoreline Drive near Northern Produce in Bracebridge.

 

 

Re(2): Red-bellied Woodpecker - photo update
Posted on December 31, 2016 at 10:32:43 AM by Barbara Taylor

The Red-bellied Woodpecker just returned to our yard along with a couple Blue Jays. They all took a peanut from the feeder and then flew off...probably trying to stay one jump ahead of the neighbourhood Cooper's Hawk. Earlier this morning while clearing snow off the feeder, I heard some Evening Grosbeaks fly by heading south-east towards Catherine Cres.

update: came back for lunch  -- photo1  photo2

 

 

Re(1): Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on December 28, 2016 at 02:27:42 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Red-bellied Woodpecker was here again this morning. Shortly after 10:30 a.m. he flew off to the west towards Rockwell Ave. and we haven't seen him since. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on December 27, 2016 at 01:13:03 PM by Barbara Taylor

The male Red-bellied Woodpecker has just returned to our yard! We haven't seen him since Dec. 1 - wonder where he's been. Thank goodness I put out a piece of suet this morning after a raccoon had stolen the last bit overnight. (Bracebridge)  photo  - (a just for the record shot through the window...snow flurries and too far away for my little camera)

 

 

Re(3): Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 28, 2016 at 09:09:09 AM by ksmith

Thank you!

 

 

Re(2): Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 27, 2016 at 07:50:54 AM by janice house

Their call is different too, gorgeous birds.

 

 

Re(2): Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 27, 2016 at 07:06:32 AM by BrendaLaking

Cedar waxwings are a warm brown with pale yellow underparts, WHITE undertail coverts,and LACK white spots in the wings. Bohemian waxwings are larger, grayer, with gray underparts, CINNAMON undertail coverts, and HAVE white and yellow spots in the wings.

 

 

Re(1): Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 26, 2016 at 06:29:16 PM by ksmith

How can you tell if they are bohemian or cedar waxwings?

 

 

Bohemian Waxwings
Posted on December 25, 2016 at 02:03:25 PM by janice house

Merry Christmas, this morning a little after 9 there were 100+ waxwings in Memorial Park in Bracebridge. I backed the car up closer to the show to get a photo but when I got ready to take a shot they disappeared.....

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 22 December
Posted on December 23, 2016 at 10:38:11 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 23, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

The Visitor Centre (exhibits and restaurant) at km 43 will be closed from
December 24 to 26, and then open daily from December 27 to January 1,
9 am to 5 pm,. Good numbers of birds are frequenting its feeders and include
a female Wild Turkey and an immature male Red-winged Blackbird. A Marten
was attracted to the black sunflower seed and suet one day this week.

Three adult male Spruce Grouse in a spruce near the entrance of Spruce Bog
Boardwalk on December 21 included one with a greenish-blue band on its left
leg. This bird was banded there in May 2009 when it was at least one year
old, making it probably nine or more years of age now. The BNA notes that
Spruce Grouse have been known to live to at least 13 years. Most have a much
shorter lifespan.

Bohemian Waxwings are still being seen occasionally, including three calling
in flight at the Visitor Centre on December 21.

Moose are being observed regularly along the highway. Be careful driving,
especially at night.

WINTER FINCHES
Pine Grosbeak: A couple of small groups were observed on the highway.

Purple Finch: Five were reported along the highway on December 18.

Red Crossbill: Eight were seen along the highway on the 18th.

White-winged Crossbill: Small flocks continue to be observed.

Pine Siskin: Six were along the highway on the 18th, and nine were at the
Visitor Centre feeders on the 22nd.

American Goldfinch: Flocks, some large, are being noted on the highway.
There were seventy at the Visitor Centre feeders on the 22nd.

Evening Grosbeak: About 100 were coming to the Visitor Centre feeders on
some days this week, mainly from early to mid morning.

Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).

Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

 

 

Gravenhurst-Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count Results
Posted on December 23, 2016 at 08:59:12 PM by Al Sinclair

37th Gravenhurst-Bracebridge Christmas Bird Count Results ONGB
Held Sunday December 18, 2016
Observers 17
Temperature -10 to -13C Wind chill -20 to -24C
Large lakes and fast moving water open
AM partly cloudy PM partly cloudy
Snow depth 28 to 38 cm
Total species 28 (21 Gravenhurst 27 Bracebridge)(10 year avererage 36.6 )
Total individuals 2017 (998 Gravenhurst 1019 Bracebridge)(10 year average 2489 )
New count highs: None
Unusual species: Sharp-shinned Hawk(count week), Bohemian Waxwing, American Robin
Finch species: Common Redpoll, American Goldfinch, Evening Grosbeak

SPECIES
MALLARD 1
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK count week
COOPER'S HAWK 1
RED-TAILED HAWK 1
BALD EAGLE 3
WILD TURKEY 102
HERRING GULL 15
ROCK PIGEON 243
MOURNING DOVE 100
DOWNY WOODPECKER 27
HAIRY WOODPECKER 30
PILEATED WOODPECKER 6
BLUE JAY 62
AMERICAN CROW 11
COMMON RAVEN 105
BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE 618
RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH 24
WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH 63
BROWN CREEPER 2
AMERICAN ROBIN 1
BOHEMIAN WAXWING 87
EUROPEAN STARLING 214
NORTHERN CARDINAL 13
AMERICAN TREE SPARROW 15
DARK-EYED JUNCO 49
COMMON REDPOLL 8
AMERICAN GOLDFINCH 210
EVENING GROSBEAK 5
HOUSE SPARROW 1

 

Photos taken by David Goodyear on count day:  photo1  photo2  photo3  photo4  photo5

 

 

Pine Grosbeak
Posted on December 23, 2016 at 12:58:46 PM by DaleWenger

I saw one Pine Grosbeak on Harp Lake road just before it turn into Williamsport road in Huntsville. It was eating on the roadside.

 

 

Re(1): Owl & Crows
Posted on December 22, 2016 at 10:33:06 PM by coreyhkh

was it a great grey Owl?

 

 

Owl & Crows
Posted on December 22, 2016 at 03:28:20 PM by JayEl

Washago - a minimum of 12 very noisy crows attempting to purge a grey owl from cedar tree. This lasted for about 3 hours. When we returned to check out the situation, all was quiet and the owl was gone, as were the crows.

 

 

Re(2): A Washago bird count, of sorts
Posted on December 23, 2016 at 04:10:52 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

More this afternoon John. 33 trumpeter swans at Washago. 1 Turkey!, 10 Chickadees and about 15 rock doves!

 

 

Re(1): A Washago bird count, of sorts
Posted on December 23, 2016 at 01:28:57 PM by Terry & Marion Whittam

Hi John, I'll add crow, goldfinchs, white breasted nuthatch, chickadees and a hairy woodpecker.
Good birding
(and a red fox!)

 

 

Re(1): A Washago bird count, of sorts
Posted on December 20, 2016 at 08:23:08 PM by DBurton

I heard from a friend yesterday that there are 30+ Swans in Washago on the river.

 

 

A Washago bird count, of sorts
Posted on December 20, 2016 at 04:53:17 PM by John Challis

Gayle and I spent a comfortable hour and a half doing our own little Christmas count. No more birds out today than yesterday. But, we saw:
Chickadees (at our feeder)
Red-breasted nuthatch (in our yard)
Five trumpeter swans
30-40 Bohemian waxwings
One northern shrike.
Washago needs its own official count.

 

 

Sharpie
Posted on December 20, 2016 at 12:30:19 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning I walked the "Chickadee Trail" between Henry Marsh and the Bracebridge Ponds. Some of the chickadees sounded an alarm so I searched the trees hoping to see an Owl, but instead found a Sharp-shinned Hawk watching the birdfeeder just east of the marsh. Later I saw a Bald Eagle soaring above Henry Marsh, heading west. The only birds seen along the trail were many Black-capped Chickadees, a few White-breasted Nuthatches, and a single Blue Jay. The trail is in good condition for walking but is a single file track.

 

 

Re(2): Cooper's Hawk...success
Posted on December 19, 2016 at 10:20:11 AM by Al Sinclair

Possibly the same bird was seen yesterday on the Christmas Bird Count at the corner of Wellington and Dill in Bracebridge. It flew in and landed in a tree as we drove by at 9:00 am.

 

 

Re(1): Cooper's Hawk...success
Posted on December 17, 2016 at 12:48:47 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Hawk was back this morning but flew off when I went out to look for it. Nervous squirrels and noisy Jays told me it was there, but I couldn't find its hiding place high up in the trees until it flew.

 

 

Cooper's Hawk...success
Posted on December 16, 2016 at 05:45:01 PM by Barbara Taylor

This afternoon the Cooper's Hawk came back to our yard and this time was successful...one less Mourning Dove. Hope the Red-bellied Woodpecker hasn't met the same fate, but we haven't seen it since Dec. 1. (Bracebridge)  photo1  photo2  photo3  photo4  photo5

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 15 December
Posted on December 16, 2016 at 02:32:13 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 16, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Relatively little change in the birds this week, but lots more snow,
especially on Wednesday.

BOREAL SPECIALTIES

Try Spruce Bog Boardwalk and black spruce areas along Opeongo Road ((gated
at Cameron Lake Road junction) for Spruce Grouse, Black-backed Woodpecker,
Gray Jay and Boreal Chickadee.

WINTER FINCHES

Pine Grosbeak: Small groups were reported on the highway at km 18 and at
Costello Picnic Area, Opeongo Road, on the 9th.

White-winged Crossbill: Small flocks continue to be seen on the highway.

American Goldfinch: A few are coming to the Visitor Centre feeders.

Evening Grosbeak: Up to 75 were seen at the Visitor Centre feeders this
week.

Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).

Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

DIRECTIONS:
Algonquin Provincial 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).

In winter, the Visitor Centre exhibits and restaurant at km 43 are open on
weekends from 9 am to 5 pm. There is access with limited services on
weekdays from 9 am to 4 pm.

Get your park permit and Information Guide (with a map of birding
locations mentioned here) at the East Gate or the West Gate.
Locations are also described at: www.algonquinpark.on.ca

 

 

Marten
Posted on December 16, 2016 at 01:16:15 PM by Terri

Sorry this is not a good picture but, I took it from indoors. Captured this Marten this morning around my bird feeders, three times. In this picture he is heading under our porch.

Friday, Dec 16th, 2016 - Hwy 118 East, Bracebridge, ON  photo

 

 

Barred Owl
Posted on December 14, 2016 at 12:55:06 PM by Barbara Taylor

A Barred Owl has just arrived in our yard. It is sitting high up in a tree overlooking the birdfeeders. This morning a Cooper's Hawk tried to catch a Mourning Dove, but missed. Maybe the Owl will have better luck finding something to eat, although the main snowsquall streamer has just slipped down over us once again... (Bracebridge)

 

 

Piping Plover Video from Winnie Poon
Posted on December 14, 2016 at 12:01:45 PM by michaelhatton

An interesting video on the Piping Plovers that nested at Darlington this past summer. You will likely have to cut and paste the link.

Link for using ipad iPhone: https://vimeo.com/195578986/651820942f

Link for using computer: https://vimeo.com/195213709/757b118f92

 

 

40 ravens at dusk
Posted on December 13, 2016 at 06:48:20 PM by Al Sinclair

Unusual site here 8km east of Bracebridge on Hwy 118E. Tonight at 5:30PM, almost completely dark, I heard a ravens calling overhead and observed around 40 birds flying fast and low in a tight flock in the direction of the Bracebridge dump. I assume they were heading back to a roosting site after feeding on a large animal kill south-east of here,somewhere between Uffington and Barkway.

 

 

rarity in Midland
Posted on December 13, 2016 at 11:08:16 AM by John Challis

I haven't been out myself, but a western grebe has been drawing birders to the bay in Midland since it was discovered on Dec. 3. If only it would pop over this way on the weekend!  photo
Western Grebe reported in Midland Mirror

 

 

Bohemian Waxwings Bracebridge
Posted on December 12, 2016 at 02:31:47 PM by Al Sinclair

Barry Faulkner just called to say a flock of over 100 Bohemian Waxwings cleaned off all his crab apple trees this morning. 1680 Cedar Lane, Bracebridge.

 

 

Grackle & Robin
Posted on December 12, 2016 at 11:13:13 AM by ChrisB

Common Grackle at Huntsville feeder December 2nd. American Robin in same vicinity December 11th.

 

 

Evening Grosbeaks
Posted on December 11, 2016 at 04:25:14 PM by janice house

We had 10 visit our yard this morning ( Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst), my brother had 8 yesterday at their home in Bent River.

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 8 December
Posted on December 10, 2016 at 08:28:34 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 9, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

The Park was transformed into a beautiful winter landscape this week, with
lots of snow on the ground. Only the larger lakes remain open.

A Short-eared Owl being chased by a raven was photographed at the Old
Airfield on December 4. Our previous latest fall date for this very rare
migrant owl in Algonquin was November 6.

Twenty Bohemian Waxwings perched briefly in trees near the Visitor Centre
feeders on December 3. These waxwings appear to be attracted to the sounds
of birds at the feeders but then quickly move on when there is nothing there
for them to eat.

BOREAL SPECIALTIES

Spruce Grouse: There was a report from the Mizzy Lake Trail rail bed
(currently accessible via Arowhon Road).

Black-backed Woodpecker: Check all black spruce areas.

Gray Jay: Regular at Mizzy Lake Trail rail bed, Spruce Bog Boardwalk and on
Opeongo Road (gated at Cameron Lake Road junction).

Boreal Chickadee: The best bet still seems to be the Mizzy Lake Trail rail
bed, where the species was reported this week.

WINTER FINCHES

Pine Grosbeak: Seven were observed eating ash keys on Opeongo Road on
December 3.

Purple Finch: One or two appeared irregularly at the Visitor Centre feeders.

Red Crossbill: Occasional small flocks continued to be seen this week.

White-winged Crossbill: Twenty-five were observed in black spruce areas
along the Mizzy Lake Trail rail bed on December 3.

Common Redpoll: No reports in the Highway 60 Corridor, despite the sighting
of large numbers last week on the Park's East Side.

Pine Siskin: No reports.

American Goldfinch: Up to a dozen came to the Visitor Centre feeders.

Evening Grosbeak: Numbers peaked at 64 birds at the Visitor Centre feeders,
providing excellent opportunities to see and photograph these large and
colourful finches.


Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).

Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

 

 

American Wigeon Huntsville
Posted on December 7, 2016 at 02:27:11 PM by DaleWenger

There is was American Wigeon near Alberto's Hair Salon and Huntsville Highschool at 2:05. Last seen heading towards Main St. Bridge. Link to image below
http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S32907702

 

 

Re(1): Gulls - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on December 7, 2016 at 04:38:06 PM by janice house

Going home at lunch I noticed a big flock of gulls circling high above, I was on the winding part of Entrance Drive above the Bracebridge Falls.

 

 

Gulls - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on December 7, 2016 at 02:11:57 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning I counted 91 Gulls standing on the ice in cell 1 at the Bracebridge Ponds. As far as I could tell, they were all Herring Gulls except for one Ring-billed Gull. Is it the lack of snow or the recently opened Bracebridge Landfill keeping them here...

 

 

Re(1): Juvenile Grosbeak
Posted on December 7, 2016 at 01:49:04 PM by Goodyear

Got a better look at it this afternoon - a Rose-breasted.

 

 

Juvenile Grosbeak
Posted on December 7, 2016 at 11:35:48 AM by Goodyear

I just saw a young grosbeak in a tree with feeders in the front yard of a house at the corner of Susan Street and North Dufferin Street, near Huntsville Public School. I had to get back to work, so couldn't spend any time with the bird. It had a strongly bicoloured bill (dark on top, bone below), which is often a feature of a Black-headed Grosbeak, although I believe first winter male Rose-breasted Grosbeaks can have this same look to their bills?? The bird was puffed up and hiding within the tree, so couldn't get very good looks. Appeared to have one rose-coloured feather on its breast. An unusual bird for this time of the year. Likely a late Rose-breasted, but if someone else could confirm i.d. to eliminate a Black-headed that would be great!!

 

 

White-winged Crossbills
Posted on December 4, 2016 at 03:45:49 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there was a small flock of White-winged Crossbills along "the Chickadee trail" a short distance east of Henry Marsh. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Gravenhurst Landfill
Posted on December 4, 2016 at 02:12:14 PM by janice house

Checked it out today, 5 bald eagles, several ravens, crows, pigeons and starlings, one gull flew over. Not sure what they are using to fill in but it is really ripe.

 

 

Re(1): Bohemian waxwings
Posted on December 4, 2016 at 11:22:35 AM by John Challis

PS...we have been hearing evening grosbeaks through the week but nothing to report today.

 

 

Bohemian waxwings
Posted on December 4, 2016 at 11:18:36 AM by John Challis

Didn't need to go far this morning for sightings. There were 50 Bohemian waxwings by our house, feeding on frozen crabapples in the front yard. Squirrels had been watching and one of them decided it was worth trying what the birds had been eating; apparently the flavour doesn't agree with squirrels, so the birds were left to feed again.

 

 

Re(1): Henry Marsh
Posted on December 3, 2016 at 10:46:26 PM by Barbara Taylor

I was at the marsh this morning and noticed the beaver dam had been removed but the underlying rock dam that the town had constructed was still intact, so I don't think the water level will go down too much this time. The beavers had already put a couple branches in place to start their rebuild. I was told there had been heavy equipment there last week and it had been assumed it was the town. That's all I know for now.

The marsh was free of ice, but there were only some Mallards present.

 

 

Henry Marsh
Posted on December 3, 2016 at 08:39:50 PM by janice house

I just looked at Barbara Taylor's post on E Bird, beaver dam removed, heavy equipment at the marsh? What the h is going on?

 

 

Rough Legged Hawk - Raymond
Posted on December 3, 2016 at 02:25:28 PM by janice house

The hawk was perched on a tall fence post on the right just past the Raymond Firehall today around 11am. Eight buffleheads were swimming in the bay in front of the marina at Skeleton Lake Rd 3

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 1 December
Posted on December 1, 2016 at 11:48:26 AM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Dec. 1, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

There is relatively little change in the birding situation compared with
last week, but mild temperatures and rain have greatly reduced the snow
cover that we had.

BOREAL SPECIALTIES

Spruce Grouse: No reports. Try the Mizzy Lake Trail rail bed (currently
accessible via Arowhon Road).

Black-backed Woodpecker: Reported at the old Sims Pit section of Arowhon
Road and at the rail bed chain gate nearby.

Gray Jay: Regular at Mizzy Lake Trail rail bed, Spruce Bog Boardwalk and on
Opeongo Road (gated at Cameron Lake Road junction).

Boreal Chickadee: No reports. Likely due to fewer observers now and possibly
less vocal chickadees. Try the same areas as for Gray Jays.


WINTER FINCHES
Finch numbers remain low but species diversity is not bad for a poor cone
crop year.

Pine Grosbeak: One report of six at Costello Picnic Area on Opeongo Road.
So there are a few around.

Purple Finch: One at the Visitor Centre feeders was last seen on November
27.

Red Crossbill: Fairly regular sightings of small groups on the highway
pavement and shoulder, with a couple of larger flocks of 25-30 birds.

White-winged Crossbill: Small groups of this crossbill continue to be seen.
A flock of 35 photographed on the 27th at Spruce Bog Boardwalk were at black
spruce cones.

COMMON REDPOLL: The first report here this fall involved an estimated 200
birds noted by an experienced observer in the Lake Travers area of the
Park's East Side (accessible from the Pembroke area) between dawn and dusk
on the 26th. Birders should be looking and listening for redpolls along
Highway 60.

Pine Siskin: No reports.

American Goldfinch: The Visitor Centre feeders continue to attract about 20
each day, and others are along the highway.

Evening Grosbeak: Up to 50 individuals are now coming daily to the Visitor
Centre feeders.

Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).

Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

 

 

Re(1): Common Mergansers, Butterfly Lake
Posted on November 30, 2016 at 05:41:13 PM by missyinmuskoka

Last Sunday I watched at least 20 gather on Kahshe lake. They seemed to all dive together and put up quite a fuss when one came up with a fish. It looked like there were either two females or juvenile males tagging along

 

 

Common Mergansers, Butterfly Lake
Posted on November 29, 2016 at 05:38:51 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

About 4 pm this afternoon there were at least 2 dozen male Common Mergansers at the North end of Butterfly Lake near Hwy 118.

 

 

Re(1): Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 29, 2016 at 05:01:06 PM by J. Gardner

He doesn't need us just yet. J. Gardner

 

 

Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 29, 2016 at 03:19:19 PM by Barbara Taylor

I thought the bird might have left the neighbourhood since this was the third day in a row that we hadn't seen him...but he just came in at 3:15 p.m. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Great Black-backed Gull
Posted on November 29, 2016 at 02:15:33 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there were several Gulls standing on the ice in cell 2. One bird stood out as being rather different...a Great Black-backed Gull. It appeared to match the description of a 3rd winter bird in my field guide, but I'm not familiar with the plumage cycles. The bird eventually left with some of the Herring Gulls, and headed north-east. I checked Bracebridge Bay on the way home, but there were only a few Herring Gulls there. Perhaps it kept going towards the recently opened Bracebridge dump?   photo1  photo2  photo3

There was a lot more open water in cell 3 today which had attracted three Buffleheads, about 20 Mallards and 4 Canada Geese. Seventeen Snow Buntings flew past heading south.

 

 

Evening Grosbeaks
Posted on November 28, 2016 at 04:01:34 PM by janice house

A pair have been showing up in our yard for the last week, this morning I watched them for a few minutes and they were eating the basswood fruit.

 

 

Bald Eagle
Posted on November 28, 2016 at 12:47:38 PM by Barbara Taylor

At noon today there was an adult Bald Eagle circling above the Walmart parking lot in Bracebridge. It eventually soared away to the north-west. Fortunately I had my binoculars with me as I had just been checking out the Bracebridge Ponds...nothing there except one Herring Gull, a lingering American Tree Sparrow, and a dozen Mallards flying south. There is now a small patch of open water in cell 3 by the treatment plant outflow, but the Mallards weren't interested.

 

 

Double crested Cormorant
Posted on November 28, 2016 at 07:45:58 AM by janice house

We had a fly-over yesterday, heading towards Gravenhurst/Lake Muskoka. Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Report: 24 November
Posted on November 25, 2016 at 05:31:27 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 24, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Snow and ice (on ponds and smaller lakes) have arrived in Algonquin Park.
The bird feeders are now operational at the Visitor Centre (km 43 on Highway
60).

BOREAL SPECIALTIES
Some birders continue to have success in finding Spruce Grouse, Black-backed
Woodpecker, Gray Jay and Boreal Chickadee along the rail bed section of the
Mizzy Lake Trail (accessible via Arowhon Road). Gray Jays are also regular
at Spruce Bog Boardwalk and on Opeongo Road (from the locked gate northward,
accessible on foot).

WINTER FINCHES
Although finch numbers are limited in Algonquin so far, there is good
species diversity.

Pine Grosbeak: With the arrival of persistent snow and highway salting
operations, a few have been observed along the road in recent days.

Purple Finch: One has been coming to the Visitor Centre feeders. There are
probably a few others out there as well.

Red Crossbill: They are fairly scarce but observed occasionally. Typical
sightings involve one to six birds, although one flock of 25 was reported.

White-winged Crossbill: This crossbill is being seen more regularly than the
Red Crossbill. Flocks of up to 20 birds have been reported, with some
picking at salty snow along the highway shoulder. The Mizzy Lake Trail rail
bed and Opeongo Road are also good locations to look for them.

Pine Siskin: No reports from the Park this week, but a single bird at a
feeder near Oxtongue Lake west of Algonquin may indicate the presence of a
few.

American Goldfinch: The Visitor Centre feeders are attracting about 20 each
day, and others are along the highway.

Evening Grosbeak: Up to 23 individuals came daily to the Visitor Centre
feeders this week. They are less frequently seen there after mid-morning.


Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).


Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

DIRECTIONS:
Algonquin Provincial 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).

In winter, the Visitor Centre exhibits and restaurant at km 43 are open on
weekends from 9 am to 5 pm. There is access with limited services on
weekdays from 9 am to 4 pm.

Get your park permit and Information Guide (with a map of birding
locations mentioned here) at the East Gate or the West Gate.
Locations are also described at: www.algonquinpark.on.ca

 

 

Re(1): Henry Marsh Trail Feeders
Posted on November 25, 2016 at 05:27:02 PM by Barbara Taylor

The feeders can't go up until winter sets in a bit more and the bears are definitely hibernating...they went up last year in December. Nevertheless, the friendly Chickadees were happy to get a handout of seeds a few days ago when I walked the trail. They seemed to remember the feeding station spots, and how to perch on my hat. :)

 

 

Henry Marsh Trail Feeders
Posted on November 25, 2016 at 04:20:46 PM by Leslie

Hello - I was walking the Henry Marsh trail last weekend, and took some sunflower seeds along for the feeders, but they weren't there! I wondered if they're coming back or whether the folks that put them up last year got too frustrated with the squirrel population raiding the stash.

I wonder if people might be inclined to go in together to fund the purchase of a few squirrel-buster feeders to put along the trail. I think - and I know others do too -- that the activity at the feeders is a welcome opportunity to see some wild birds over the long winter months. Of course, the birds ger fairly tame, and maybe that's a bad thing, but I've seen people out there with young children delighting in the proximity of the chickadees, nuthatches and squirrels!

If the feeders went up this week, please ignore my post. But we might still want to think about putting up some larger, squirrel-deterrent feeders. I would be happy to contribute - or even organize it using this board if people would like.

 

 

Hooded Mergansers
Posted on November 23, 2016 at 05:18:10 PM by Jim Griffin

A gathering of 11 on the river in Port Sydney as darkness settled in.

 

 

Woodpeckers
Posted on November 23, 2016 at 12:29:12 PM by Barbara Taylor

For some reason several of the neighbourhood Woodpeckers showed up in our yard at the same time today, right when the usual Chickadees, Red-breasted and White-breasted Nuthatches, and Blue Jays come in for lunch. We had two Hairy Woodpeckers, a Downy, a Pileated, and the Red-bellied. There was also a Brown Creeper, which often comes in with the Chickadees. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Re(1): Owl
Posted on November 29, 2016 at 05:37:13 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

I heard several reports over the last couple of weeks about Barred Owls being seen feeding during the day along roads. I am wondering if this means they are not finding much to eat? Last year I caught more mice than ever before and this year only a few. Maybe a low year for small rodents.

 

 

Owl
Posted on November 22, 2016 at 09:57:33 PM by michaelhatton

Barred Owl on power lines east of Milford Bay this afternoon. After a few minutes, the bird flew north through the forest and over the east end of Lily Lake. It was as if he was waiting for a break in the traffic before crossing 118.  photo

 

 

Re(2): American Coot
Posted on November 23, 2016 at 10:57:56 AM by michaelhatton

No Coot this morning at 7:30. Also no open water.

 

 

Re(1): American Coot
Posted on November 22, 2016 at 09:50:41 PM by michaelhatton

At 4:45 this afternoon, just as the sun was disappearing below the horizon, the Coot was still present in cell 1 swimming quickly around and around in circles. There were 12 Mallards in cell 1 but nothing else. Three of the Mallards flew north after 5 pm. at which time it was getting quite dark. The long stay Scaup in cell 4 was nowhere to be seen.  coot photo

 

 

American Coot
Posted on November 22, 2016 at 01:37:48 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning the Bracebridge Ponds were mostly frozen over except for the west half of cell 3. I was surprised to see the lingering American Coot was still present, swimming in a small patch of open water at the west side of cell 1. The only other waterfowl seen were 8 Mallards and 3 Canada Geese in cell 3.

 

 

Re(1): Bald Eagle
Posted on November 25, 2016 at 05:48:15 PM by Gail

.... and they are back hanging around the Beiers Road landfill.... in the biggest pine trees.

 

 

Bald Eagle
Posted on November 22, 2016 at 08:15:37 AM by janice house

An adult was soaring in front of the house a few minutes ago, Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

MFN December 1, 2016 Meeting
Posted on November 20, 2016 at 08:19:35 AM by janice house

Discussions with the executive have changed the silent auction to a Christmas Draw. We had discussed just books but donations of baked goods or other items would be appreciated. People can buy as many tickets as they want and there will be a separate draw for each item. Eleanor Kee Wellman will be our guest speaker, Alaska Birds, Muskox & Walrus. Hope to see you there, Muskoka Boat & Heritage Centre at the Wharf in Gravenhurst, 7:30 pm.

 

 

Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 19, 2016 at 04:28:56 PM by michaelhatton

Thanks to Barb T., I managed to get up close and personal with the Red-bellied Woodpecker that has been visiting the Meadow Heights area in Bracebridge.  photo1  photo2  photo3

 

 

buffleheads, pileated
Posted on November 18, 2016 at 09:20:34 AM by John Challis

At least three pileated woodpeckers were calling back and forth to each other this morning on the Green River, Washago -- along with some tapping by a hairy woodpecker shopping for her breakfast. While that chatter went on, the dog and I watched a beaver make a leisurely patrol of the outlet of our creek into the Green River. It seemed quite unconcerned about the dog's intense objections to its presence.

Yesterday morning I saw two buffleheads in the Trent canal at Highway 11; it was only a brief glimpse but the markings appeared to be right for a male and female.

 

 

Shrike, Coot - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on November 17, 2016 at 01:40:13 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there was an American Coot in cell 1 and an adult Northern Shrike west of cell 4. There were still many Buffleheads, Mallards, and sixteen Scaup. A few American Goldfinches and two American Tree Sparrows were west of cell 3.  photo1  photo2

 

 

Snow Buntings
Posted on November 15, 2016 at 07:24:14 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were eleven Snow Buntings at the Bracebridge Ponds. There were also two Common Redpolls, my first ones this season. A female Gadwall was in cell 1, hiding in plain sight amidst some Mallards. I was curious just how many Mallards there were today, so decided to do an actual count...107. There were also many Buffleheads, several Lesser Scaup, a Hooded Merganser, and a couple Ring-necked Ducks.

 

 

Re(4): Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 22, 2016 at 01:59:02 PM by Barbara Taylor

The bird is still in the neighbourhood. He was at our feeder briefly this morning, then flew north across Kevin Cres. towards Daleman Dr.

 

 

Re(3): Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 19, 2016 at 02:24:24 PM by Barbara Taylor

We didn't see the bird yesterday, but he came in with the Blue Jays this morning shortly after 10 a.m and is here again now.

 

 

Re(2): Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 17, 2016 at 01:49:04 PM by Barbara Taylor

Wow, the bird was back again today around 12:30 p.m. It seemed to be headed north-east towards Kevin Cres. when it left. (Bracebridge)  photo

 

 

Re(1): Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 16, 2016 at 01:36:15 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Red-bellied Woodpecker has been back a few times today in the past hour and seems to be "taking over" the yard. He easily pushed a Hairy Woodpecker off the feeder as well as two Blue Jays. Earlier I had watched a Red Squirrel moving around high up in the same trees where the Red-bellied had cached peanuts yesterday...so much for all that effort.

 

 

Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on November 15, 2016 at 03:12:17 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Red-bellied Woodpecker showed up in our yard this afternoon! I quickly went out and threw some peanuts and sunflower seeds on our empty platform feeder and the bird came back along with some Blue Jays and Chickadees. The Woodpecker was here between 2-2:30 p.m. and was very busy caching food high up in the trees. Perhaps the bird is completing a big circle tour of the neighbourhood and will end up back at Ted's place soon. Thanks for all your updates Ted...I've tried to see the bird at your place a few times, but didn't have any luck. (Bracebridge)  photo

 

 

Shrikes on the move
Posted on November 13, 2016 at 12:20:04 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there was a Northern Shrike near the Lagoon Lane gate (first spotted by David and Regan Goodyear) and a short time later one was perched in a shrub at the south end of cell 2...possibly two different birds (both immatures). An American Coot was tucked into the south-west corner of cell 1 where it was sheltered from the wind.

 

 

Stunned Hairy
Posted on November 11, 2016 at 09:10:03 PM by michaelhatton

This (young?) Hairy, and another (its brother?), hung around the feeder for a while today. Then this one ran into a window at speed, and took a good few minutes to recover. When it was able to fly again, it hung on this Oak tree for another good few minutes appearing to try and figure out what the heck happened. Then off it went. The split in the red band on the back of the head was evident, along with the pure white outer tail feathers, though neither show in these photos.  photo1  photo2  photo3

 

 

Algonquin Park Birding Update: late October - early November
Posted on November 11, 2016 at 07:51:00 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Ron Tozer on ONTBIRDS (Nov. 10, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

BOREAL SPECIALTIES
Birders have had some recent success in finding Spruce Grouse, Black-backed
Woodpecker, Gray Jay and Boreal Chickadee along the rail bed section of the
Mizzy Lake Trail (accessible via Arowhon Road). Gray Jays are also regular
at Spruce Bog Boardwalk and on Opeongo Road north of the second bridge.

BOHEMIAN WAXWING
There have been three reports (October 20 to November 6) of small numbers
apparently on the move. There is little here for this species to feed on
except for some lingering Winterberry (Ilex) and tree buds.

WINTER FINCHES
Cone crops are poor except for white cedar.

Pine Grosbeak: A single bird along the Mizzy rail bed on November 6 was the
first and only record to date.

Purple Finch: Most have left.

Red Crossbill: A few reports of small numbers.

White-winged Crossbill: Quite a few reports, usually involving small numbers
of flyovers but also some flocks of 30 to 50 birds. Some seen on black
spruce and tamarack. Most sightings have come from Mizzy Lake Trail rail bed
and Opeongo Road. Probably on the move in search of better cone crops.

Pine Siskin: No reports during the late October-early November period.

American Goldfinch: Most have left.

Evening Grosbeak: Small numbers (usually one to five birds) have been
reported at various locations.


Birders reporting records through eBird are encouraged to share their lists
with the Algonquin Park Bird Records account (APPbirds).

Good Birding!
Ron Tozer
Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired)
Dwight, ON

DIRECTIONS:
Algonquin Provincial 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).

In winter, the Visitor Centre exhibits and restaurant at km 43 are open on
weekends from 9 am to 5 pm. There is access with limited services on
weekdays from 9 am to 4 pm. BIRD FEEDERS ARE NOT YET OPERATING.

Get your park permit and Information Guide (with a map of birding
locations mentioned here) at the East Gate or the West Gate.
Locations are also described at: www.algonquinpark.on.ca

 

 

Re(1): Red Bellied
Posted on November 11, 2016 at 05:46:02 PM by missyinmuskoka

I had my first Red bellied at my peanut feeder today. I have been on South Kahshe lake road for 12 years and have never seen one here before :)

 

 

Re(1): Red Bellied
Posted on November 12, 2016 at 03:21:15 PM by tedthevideoman

He was just in my Mums yard...50 Killdeer

 

 

Red Bellied
Posted on November 11, 2016 at 11:15:09 AM by tedthevideoman

The Red Bellied was just now back. This time he was on the suet feeder  (Bracebridge)

 

 

Naturalists' remembrance
Posted on November 11, 2016 at 10:49:05 AM by John Challis

And in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

 

 

Red-tailed Hawks
Posted on November 10, 2016 at 01:21:17 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were two adult Red-tailed Hawks flying low around the Bracebridge Ponds. One was being harassed by two Gulls, while the other had to deal with a bothersome Crow. There were still many Buffleheads and Mallards, 18 Scaup, and a Ring-necked Duck. I didn't see any Green-winged Teal, although there were still four yesterday.

 

 

Cooper's Hawk
Posted on November 8, 2016 at 11:37:27 AM by Barbara Taylor

This morning a Cooper's Hawk was checking out our yard. A Chipmunk and a Red Squirrel both darted into the brush pile and stayed hidden until it left. (Bracebridge)
 

 

 

sandhills, cattle egrets
Posted on November 7, 2016 at 02:41:29 PM by John Challis

Yesterday, by good luck, we were driving along Cambrian Road west of Hwy 11 between Orillia and Washago and came across several cars on the shoulder. When we noticed a spotting scope we realized there must have been birds ... in fact, in with a few cattle there were four cattle egrets. OFO had posted an alert. Arni Stinnissen of Orillia added a photo on his Facebook page, which I've linked. Sorry it's so darned big ...
This morning Gayle reported a flock of some 30 sandhill cranes flying over our home in Washago. It must have sounded like a horn arrangement by Ornette Coleman.  photo link

 

 

Re(1): Red Bellied
Posted on November 8, 2016 at 02:33:41 PM by tedthevideoman

He was back again this afternoon

 

 

Re(2): Red Bellied
Posted on November 7, 2016 at 07:50:24 AM by Goodyear

Still around. Was in our yard this morning just a few houses down from Ted.

 

 

Re(1): Red Bellied
Posted on November 6, 2016 at 04:45:29 PM by tedthevideoman

still here 4:45 pm
(120 Meadow Heights Bracebridge)

 

 

Red Bellied
Posted on November 6, 2016 at 02:02:02 PM by tedthevideoman

About noon today I was topping up our feeders when this fella showed up....last time was 2007   photo

 

 

Bullfrog
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 04:12:31 PM by Barbara Taylor

Yesterday at the Bracebridge Ponds I was surprised to find this frog still out and about. At first glance I thought it was a Green Frog since it was bright green above its lip and its chin seemed a bit yellow in contrast. However, there aren't any ridges along the sides of its back, so that makes it a Bullfrog. I've often read that Bullfrogs have very large eardrums (tympanum), much larger than their eyes, but apparently that only applies to males. This one must be a female then, as its tympanum is not larger than its eye. (see references below)  photo1  photo2  photo3

references:
https://opinicon.wordpress.com/species-accounts/american-bullfrog
http://www.torontozoo.com/adoptapond/frogs.asp?fr=8
http://www.carcnet.ca/english/amphibians/species_accounts/anurans/L_catesbeianus/catesbeianus2.php

 

 

One of those Teal
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 08:11:27 PM by michaelhatton

photo

 

 

Green-winged Teal
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 01:39:04 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there were some newly arrived Green-winged Teal, bringing the total to 21, including nine males. A male and female Hooded Merganser were in cell 4. There were probably close to 280 Buffleheads, at least 50 Mallards, 14 Lesser Scaup, and an American Black Duck. A Dunlin flew in from the north and circled low over the middle roadway, but I lost sight of it so don't know if it landed. I couldn't find the Coot, although it was still in cell 1 yesterday. A single American Pipit was near the dumping ponds.

 

 

Re(1):5 bears - Photo by Doug Smith
Posted on November 6, 2016 at 12:41:23 PM by Al Sinclair

photo

 

 

Re(1): 5 bears in a tree Port Carling
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 07:17:53 PM by Doug Smith

Here are 4 photos on my google drive. Hope this works, (I couldn't get into the Tinypic website). If not try this copying and pasting this URL --
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B8wO-b2Jn5NOcDRhMGNwTlRHS00

 

 

Re(1): 5 bears in a tree Port Carling
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 06:06:33 PM by GaryFischer

Hey Doug, what does "hard mast" mean? What has happened to the 5 bears? Would love to see a pic.

 

 

5 bears in a tree Port Carling
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 12:34:30 PM by Doug Smith

5 bears are sleeping/resting in a large oak tree in Port Carling, on a property beside the Presbyterian Church. Seems this is one of several bear families sighted in Port this fall -- could it be the lack of hard mast that is causing them to come into the village? The OPP are there right now -- here's hoping it doesn't turn into an incident. I'll get some pics up soon.

 

 

Evening Grosbeaks
Posted on November 4, 2016 at 11:33:46 AM by tedthevideoman

Just had 2 male Evening Grosbeaks at our feeders as well as aprox 20 Gold Finches
120 Meadow Heights BB

 

 

Re(1): Goldfinches, Bala & Six Mile Lake
Posted on November 3, 2016 at 08:48:33 AM by LindaActonRiddle

I've had Goldfinches at my feeder all summer here in Bracebridge, dressed in their bright colours. Then they disappeared for a few weeks and have returned only in the last week. Now they are in their duller colours, but I'm happy to see them.

 

 

Re(1): Goldfinches, Bala & Six Mile Lake
Posted on November 2, 2016 at 06:24:40 PM by missyinmuskoka

I had 6 or 7 at my feeder last weekend too!

 

 

Goldfinches, Bala & Six Mile Lake
Posted on November 2, 2016 at 10:55:42 AM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Yesterday I heard from Anne Lewis on Six Mile Lake that a dozen American Goldfinches had arrived at her feeder. Today, about 6 arrived at my feeders in Bala.

 

 

Red-breasted Mergansers
Posted on November 1, 2016 at 02:17:59 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning I took a quick look around the Bracebridge Ponds inbetween rain showers. Just ahead of the next band of rain, three female Red-breasted Mergansers flew in from the north-west and landed in cell 2. The Coot was still in cell 1. There were still many Buffleheads, Mallards, six Green-winged Teal, and eight Lesser Scaup. Six Snow Buntings flew past, heading towards Kerr Park.

 

 

Looking through the wrong end!
Posted on October 31, 2016 at 04:48:31 PM by michaelhatton

Chickadees out in force at the sewage lagoons and looking for food everywhere.  photo

 

 

Pied-billed Grebe
Posted on October 31, 2016 at 04:48:23 PM by Barbara Taylor

This afternoon there was a Pied-billed Grebe at Bardsville. It was swimming along the creek that passes through the large marshy area east of Beatrice Townline Rd. just north of Falkenburg Rd.

 

 

Re(1): Red-Breasted Mergansers
Posted on October 31, 2016 at 06:02:48 PM by janice house

I got there after 3, still 5 then one flew towards the wharf

 

 

Red-Breasted Mergansers
Posted on October 30, 2016 at 02:34:14 PM by DBurton

At Lorne Street Beach, sitting on the rocks, there are 5 Red-Breasted Mergansers.

 

 

Cardinal and Red-bellied Woodpecker
Posted on October 30, 2016 at 12:23:53 PM by Terri

Hi All, I had a Male Cardinal show up yesterday and today, it's very rare that I see them at my house. I live on 118 East Bracebridge about 15 minutes from Hwy 11. Hope this guy continues to come around, he adds some nice color to the yard. Sorry the picture isn't better.  photo  Also, a first for me, I saw a Red Bellied Woodpecker at my feeder for one day only on Oct 18th. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of him.

 

 

Re(1): Lapland Longspurs
Posted on October 30, 2016 at 03:04:50 PM by Barbara Taylor

Late this morning there was still one Lapland Longspur along the middle roadway between cells 1 and 2. When a dozen Snow Buntings flew over, the Longspur called and flew up to join them. They appeared to land briefly at the gravel area north of cell 4, but then flew over towards the dumping ponds. One bird broke off from the rest and flew west along the roadway north of cell 4...possibly the Longspur...I couldn't see if it landed. There was a late Eastern Phoebe west of cell 3 along with four Golden-crowned Kinglets and a White-crowned Sparrow. The Coot was still in cell 1.

Lapland Longspur (two photos from today):  photo1  photo2

 

 

Re(1): Photos of the Lapland Longspurs
Posted on October 29, 2016 at 03:43:58 PM by michaelhatton

photo1  photo2

 

 

Lapland Longspurs
Posted on October 29, 2016 at 12:34:46 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there were two Lapland Longspurs feeding along the roadway between cells 1 and 2 - last seen north of the white post shortly before noon. I only found two Pipits today. The Coot was still in cell 1.

 

 

Pipits
Posted on October 28, 2016 at 01:45:40 PM by Barbara Taylor

Around noon today at the Bracebridge Ponds there were about 40 American Pipits feeding along the north and west edges of cell 3. There were also four Rusty Blackbirds, two Red-winged Blackbirds, about 60 American Tree Sparrows, as well as three White-crowned Sparrows, two American Goldfinches, and two Song Sparrows. An American Coot was in cell 1 along with a male Wood Duck. Six Green-winged Teal and three sleeping Scaup were in cell 2. The lone male Lesser Scaup remains in cell 4. There were still many Mallards, and at least 250 Buffleheads. Yesterday's first snowfall of the season was melting fast:  photo

 

 

red-bellied woodpecker
Posted on October 26, 2016 at 08:55:17 PM by PatWelch

We had a red-bellied woodpecker that came to our feeders today. It liked eating the peanuts out of a tubular feeder and mixed seed that was on the ground. We are south west of Huntsville on the Aspdin Rd

 

 

Short-tailed Weasel
Posted on October 26, 2016 at 08:45:29 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there was a Short-tailed Weasel (Ermine) eating a vole at the edge of the roadway near the aeration pond. It darted back into the tall grass before I could get my camera out. It was still in its summer fur coat. Does anyone know when they typically change into their white winter coat?

 

 

White-winged Crossbills and Boreal Chickadees on the move in Algonquin Park
Posted on October 25, 2016 at 08:06:09 PM by Ontbirds

*This report was originally posted by Lev Frid & Amanda Guercio on ONTBIRDS (Oct. 25, 2016) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

Hello Ontario Birders,

While not necessarily rare birds, there are some avian events occurring
here in Algonquin Park that would be valuable to folks further south
looking for said birds.

Amanda Guercio and I, in the past week have had an increase of White-winged
Crossbill sightings in the park. I had heard a few flying by in the past
week, but a flock of 13 and another of five birds were present today on the
Mizzy Trail with singles interspersed throughout. As per Ron Pittaway's
forecast, the cone crop for spruce is not good in the park, but the cedar
crop is quite good. These may be birds commuting to better feeding areas or
birds that have arrived to feed on the cedar crop. They seem to be
increasing and it may be a good time to keep an ear out for them further
south as well.

Chickadees, titmice and nuthatches are apparently on the move throughout
Southern Ontario! Here we have been detecting increased numbers of Boreal
Chickadees, many behaving like migrants. Usually, resident Boreal
Chickadees in Algonquin travel in pairs within flocks of Black-capped
Chickadees and hang tight to conifers. Today I had a flock of seven Boreal
Chickadees traveling together silently through open hardwoods on the Mizzy
Lake Trail. On the 21st, two small groups of Boreal Chickadees were doing
the same on the Old Railway Bike Trail. Tadoussac is reporting seeing a
movement of this species as well.

It would be well worth checking any migrating chickadee flocks along the
lakes for ones with brown caps.

Cheers!
Lev Frid & Amanda Guercio
Huntsville, ON

 

 

Bald Eagle just west of the Bracebridge Sewage Lagoons Cell 4
Posted on October 25, 2016 at 06:34:29 PM by michaelhatton

Observed today just after 4 in the afternoon as it circled in a thermal.  photo

 

 

Re(2): Bobcat
Posted on October 25, 2016 at 10:38:12 PM by Alex Mills

I used to think that about the bobcat, but they are actually the cat that is regularly (but rarely) seen in "cottage country." One was photographed in the east side of Algonquin recently (and I don't think Algnquin has any Lynx records) and another was photographed near Magnetawan recently (and I know of a second sighting there too since then). And, there is a population of bobcats in the Sudbury - Sault Ste Marie corridor. These would seem to be more suitable places for Lynx, especially since they are areas of deep snow.

 

 

Re(1): Bobcat
Posted on October 25, 2016 at 04:05:20 PM by EthanMeleg

I would expect Canada Lynx instead of Bobcat that far north. Curious to hear from any mammal experts!

 

 

Bobcat
Posted on October 25, 2016 at 12:54:56 PM by DBurton

Interesting bobcat (not cougar) photo from a security camera at a sugarbush in Trout Creek.  photo

 

 

Snow Buntings
Posted on October 25, 2016 at 11:58:02 AM by Barbara Taylor

A chilly walk around the Bracebridge Ponds this morning turned up a late Savannah Sparrow and a couple Snow Buntings, but I couldn't find any Nelson's Sparrows...the strong north wind didn't help. There were about 250 Buffleheads, a few Lesser Scaup, at least 50 Mallards, and eight Green-winged Teal, with most of the birds in cell 2. A pair of Hooded Mergansers were in cell 4. There were about 50 Canada Geese at the Kerr Park baseball field.

 

 

Horned Grebe
Posted on October 24, 2016 at 07:27:53 AM by janice house

Yesterday afternoon the grebe was seen from Lorne Street Park in Gravenhurst. The grebe hung around for several hours. Several common mergansers were also in the bay.

 

 

Fox Sparrow
Posted on October 22, 2016 at 05:19:17 PM by missyinmuskoka

Today I had two fox sparrows in my yard today in Kilworthy. South Kahshe lake road  photo

 

 

Re(2): mallard hybrid
Posted on October 30, 2016 at 09:08:55 PM by Barbara Taylor

The hybrid duck seems to have the typical green streak on its head like a Mallard x Black Duck hybrid, but not the dark body feathers I would have expected in a first generation hybrid. So perhaps it is a backcross of a Mallard x Black Duck hybrid with a pure Mallard? I don't think there is any Wigeon involvement since the bill appears to be typical Mallard/Black Duck.

There are some interesting photos of hybrids at: 10000birds.com and hybridduck.blogspot.ca

 

 

Re(1): Gadwall, Coots, Wigeons
Posted on October 22, 2016 at 06:40:15 PM by Leslie

At the ponds this afternoon - hoping to see the Nelsons but no luck. However, I took a few photos, and would like some help with the i.d. of the duck which looks like a black duck/mallard hybrid or a widgeon. Also have a shot of a pair of green winged teal.  photo1  photo2

 

 

Gadwall, Coots, Wigeons
Posted on October 22, 2016 at 02:17:47 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there was a female Gadwall with 53 Mallards in the sheltered small dumping pond north of cell 1. Four American Coots and a couple American Wigeons were in cell 1. The north wind was too strong to try finding the Nelson's Sparrows, but I flushed many American Tree Sparrows up out of the weedy goldenrod patches as I walked by. Still some Green-winged Teal and lots of Buffleheads.

 

 

Picture on eBird
Posted on October 20, 2016 at 03:29:13 PM by Goodyear

I attached a photo of the bird from last night on our eBird checklist:
http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S32118097

David

 

 

Re(3): Nelson's Sparrow - two this morning!
Posted on October 20, 2016 at 03:14:28 PM by Barbara Taylor

Dan, unfortunately it was too dark a day for my little camera to zoom that far, so only tried a couple shots and instead just enjoyed watching the elusive birds. Glad you were there to see them too.
Here's the "best" shot for what it's worth (bird is at center):  photo

 

 

Re(2): Nelson's Sparrow - two this morning!
Posted on October 20, 2016 at 02:43:45 PM by DBurton

Are there any good photos?

 

 

Re(1): Nelson's Sparrow - two this morning!
Posted on October 20, 2016 at 11:53:44 AM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were two Nelson's Sparrows in the cattails at the south end of cell 1. They were moving around together and both were seen well by four very happy birders. Both birds were still at the SW corner of cell 1 as I was leaving around 11:00 a.m.

There are four American Coots in cell 1 now. A Savannah Sparrow was by the middle intersection. A dozen Rusty Blackbirds were near the dumping ponds. The two Pectoral Sandpipers were not seen today.

 

 

Nelson's Sparrow - still there
Posted on October 19, 2016 at 08:27:30 PM by Goodyear

Seen late this afternoon at the Bracebridge Lagoons at the south end of cell 1, hiding in cattails.

 

 

Turtles
Posted on October 18, 2016 at 06:58:40 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there were some Painted Turtles along the roadways at the Bracebridge Ponds. Perhaps the unseasonably warm temperature brought them out. One of them had a large leech hitching a ride on its back.  photo1  photo2

 

 

Re(2): Nelson's Sparrow - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on October 19, 2016 at 01:28:27 PM by Goodyear

Hi George,
To the best of my knowledge there are only four records of Nelson's Sparrow for Muskoka, all from the Bracebridge Ponds. All the records are on eBird:

14 October 2013
2 October 2015
17 October 2015
18 October 2016

There are no records for Nelson's in the book published by Alex Mills (1981), which surveyed historical records for Muskoka.

We think the 2 October and 17 October 2015 birds are different birds, given the time between sightings and the fact that there were several birders trying for the 2 October bird in the days following its sighting.

 

 

Re(1): Nelson's Sparrow - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on October 19, 2016 at 10:34:42 AM by George Bryant

I'd love to know the dates / locations, #times Nelson's Sparrow has been seen in Muskoka/Bracebridge Ponds in recent years. Or is it all now in Ebird?

 

 

Nelson's Sparrow
Posted on October 18, 2016 at 01:34:17 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning I found a Nelson's Sparrow in the cattails at the west side of cell 1, north of the white post. It stayed perched in the open for a minute, but then flew down and disappeared from view. It (or another since at least three birds were moving around in there) reappeared briefly, but then back down out of sight.

There were still three American Coots in cell 1, along with a few American Wigeons, female Northern Shovelers, and two Gadwalls (M&F). The two Pectoral Sandpipers were still at the south end of cell 2, although the "beach" area has shrunk somewhat after all the rain yesterday. There were some Green-winged Teal, Lesser Scaup, Ring-necked Ducks, and a Greater Scaup in cell 2. I only saw ten Wood Ducks, and many Mallards were leaving even though there was a brisk south wind. Still many Buffleheads.  An Orange-crowned Warbler was east of cell 3, and two American Pipits were calling as they flew past.

 

 

Re(1): Odd Grackle
Posted on October 19, 2016 at 10:00:07 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Grackle is missing the normal pigment in some of its feathers, just like the Robin that was in our yard a few weeks ago. See my earlier post Leucistic Robin.

 

 

Odd Grackle
Posted on October 18, 2016 at 06:45:42 AM by edieov

This Grackle came in with a flock of other black birds. Does anyone know why it looks like this?  photo

 

 

Re(1): More about mushrooms
Posted on October 18, 2016 at 10:18:07 AM by Al Sinclair

A good video to watch before collecting honey mushrooms.
Honey Mushroom & Deadly Galerina - Identification and Differences

 

 

More about mushrooms
Posted on October 17, 2016 at 08:07:08 PM by FrancesGualtieri

Ok, so in the past week alone, we have had lasagna with added mushrooms, chicken cacciatore with mushrooms, beef and mushroom stew, cauliflower and mushroom soup, and mushrooms sauteed with onions and garlic and tomatoes. (These are all with honey mushrooms.)

Neighbours just got back from the Chapleau area, and reported that the bush there is thick with honey mushrooms.

Thanks for the link to the mushroom web site, Al - now I have another recipe to try -honey mushrooms with sour cream!
Frances Gualtieri
Vankoughnet

 

 

Re(1): White-winged Scoters
Posted on October 17, 2016 at 12:35:49 PM by janice house

Great photos Michael! I was at the ponds at 8am, no luck and I checked all 4 cells

 

 

White-winged Scoters
Posted on October 16, 2016 at 11:08:33 PM by michaelhatton

White-winged Scoters seen today at the sewage lagoons in Bracebridge.
One in cell 1, and 3 in cell 2.  photo1  photo2

 

 

To bee or not to bee
Posted on October 16, 2016 at 01:38:05 PM by Barbara Taylor

That was the question yesterday when I took some quick photos of a "Bumble Bee" in our garden so I could try to identify it later. (Bracebridge)
Oops...a bee mimic. From a distance, it sure looked like a bumble bee.  photo

But up close you can see it is a fly. Only two wings, not four like a bee. And the antennae are short and stubby, not elbowed like a bee.  photo

The big eyes are well separated at the top...so a female. Eristalis flavipes?  photo

There was also this Syrphid fly in the yard, which I believe is Sericomyia militaris.  photo

references:
Bee mimics: https://beespotter.org/topics/mimics
Syrphidae of Northeastern North America: http://www.canacoll.org/Diptera/Staff/Skevington/Syrphidae/Syrphidae.htm

 

 

More Turkeys this year?
Posted on October 14, 2016 at 11:06:39 PM by michaelhatton

I seem to have seen more turkeys in southern Ontario this year than in past years, both before and after Thanksgiving.
In this case it begs the question, why did the turkey cross the stream?  photo

Likely because his buddy went first, just before I had the camera out and ready.

 

 

Re(2): White-winged Scoters - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on October 16, 2016 at 09:10:23 PM by Barbara Taylor

Late this afternoon there were four White-winged Scoters at the Bracebridge Ponds (cells 1 and 2). Three American Coots were still in cell 1. Other waterfowl seen included several American Wigeons, Gadwall, Greater and Lesser Scaup, Ring-necked Duck, Northern Shoveler, Green-winged Teal, Hooded Merganser, Bufflehead, Wood Duck, and Mallard. A Dunlin called as it flew overhead towards the south...first one I've seen this fall. The two Pectoral Sandpipers were still at the south end of cell 2.

 

 

Re(1): Red-breasted Mergansers
Posted on October 14, 2016 at 12:47:03 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there was no sign of the Ruddy Duck, but there were some new arrivals - three Red-breasted Mergansers and a Hooded Merganser. The three Coots were still present as well as four American Wigeons, both Scaup species, Northern Shovelers, and two female Ring-necked Ducks. Several more Buffleheads have arrived, with a rough count of about 50. Still a couple Black Ducks, several Green-winged Teal, Mallards, and Wood Ducks. The two Pectoral Sandpipers were still at the south end of cell 2.

 

 

Ruddy Duck - Bracebridge Ponds
Posted on October 13, 2016 at 04:11:51 PM by Barbara Taylor

Around 3 p.m. this afternoon at the Bracebridge Ponds there were several good birds at the far north end of cell 1 where it was sheltered from the wind - a male Ruddy Duck, three American Coots, six American Wigeon, a female Northern Pintail, two female Northern Shovelers, both species of Scaup, Buffleheads, Green-winged Teal, American Black Ducks, and the usual Mallards and Wood Ducks. To the west of cell 3 (where it was also sheltered from the wind), there were several White-crowned and American Tree Sparrows, and surprisingly a Nashville Warbler and an Orange-crowned Warbler. The two Pectoral Sandpipers were still at the south end of cell 2 along with a Greater Yellowlegs and many Canada Geese.

 

 

Re(2): Red Bellied woodpecker
Posted on October 15, 2016 at 04:03:15 PM by edieov

we use black sunflower seeds.

 

 

Re(1): Red Bellied woodpecker
Posted on October 14, 2016 at 07:05:12 PM by michaelhatton

Wow. Pls re-post if it returns. What do you put in your feeder?

 

 

Red Bellied woodpecker
Posted on October 12, 2016 at 07:26:09 PM by edieov

this evening we saw what we believe to be a red bellied woodpecker at our feeder.We did have one come several years ago as well.
Dropbox

 

 

Re(2): Honey mushrooms - again
Posted on October 11, 2016 at 08:06:13 PM by Barbara Taylor

I couldn't tell if it was a Honey Mushroom, but this Squirrel seemed to like what it had found today. In the fall we often find a Red Squirrel's cache of mushrooms in our shed, but didn't know Gray Squirrels would eat them too.  photo

 

 

Re(4): Honey mushrooms - again
Posted on October 12, 2016 at 08:41:06 AM by Al Sinclair

Here is a website with honey mushroom recipes. Maybe I will try them again. Here they say blanching is a good idea because they give off mucilage when cooked in liquid.
Honey Mushrooms

 

 

Re(3): Honey mushrooms - again
Posted on October 12, 2016 at 07:40:15 AM by FrancesGualtieri

I believe the reason you blanch honey mushrooms in boiling water for 2 minutes is to remove the bitterness. That said, I usually use the boiling liquid as a soup base, and have not noticed any bitterness.
Frances

 

 

Re(1): Honey mushrooms - again
Posted on October 11, 2016 at 10:20:28 AM by Al Sinclair

Honey Mushrooms and Aborted Entolomas
The honey mushroom fungus causes some of the edible entolomas to abort producing the fungus balls also know as hunter's hearts, also a very good edible. I find honey mushrooms not that good if pan fried, a bit sour tasting.  photo

 

 

Honey mushrooms - again
Posted on October 11, 2016 at 06:18:43 AM by FrancesGualtieri

Never have I seen so many honey mushrooms - the forest is exploding with them - an amazing sight.
Frances Gualtieri
Vankoughnet

 

 

Re(2): Pectoral Sandpipers - still there
Posted on October 12, 2016 at 12:33:41 PM by Barbara Taylor

The two Pectoral Sandpipers were still at the south end of cell 2 at 11:15 a.m. today. Two female Greater Scaup had joined the female Lesser Scaup in cell 1. Two American Coots were at the south end of cell 1 along with an American Wigeon and two female Northern Shovelers. Several Green-winged Teal and three female Ring-necked Ducks were in cell 2. Two Turkey Vultures, a Red-tailed Hawk, and a Cooper's Hawk were all trying to continue their migration southward into a brisk south wind. A lot of the Mallards seen yesterday had left, but there were still plenty in the main three cells, as well as many Wood Ducks, and six Buffleheads.

Pectoral Sandpipers...and friends: photo

 

 

Re(1): Pectoral Sandpipers
Posted on October 11, 2016 at 03:45:58 PM by Barbara Taylor

This afternoon at the Bracebridge Ponds I only found one American Coot, but other birds had arrived overnight, including two Pectoral Sandpipers and a Lesser Yellowlegs.

Here's a list of most of the species seen today:
Canada Goose 45
Wood Duck 40
American Wigeon 2
American Black Duck 2
Mallard 200
Northern Shoveler 1
Green-winged Teal 12
Redhead 1

Ring-necked Duck 5
Lesser Scaup 2
Bufflehead 4
Turkey Vulture 5
American Coot 1
Pectoral Sandpiper 2
Lesser Yellowlegs 1
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 2
Yellow-rumped Warbler 1
American Tree Sparrow 7
White-crowned Sparrow 2
White-throated Sparrow 1
Song Sparrow 4
Rusty Blackbird 2

 

 

Buffleheads
Posted on October 10, 2016 at 02:03:24 PM by Barbara Taylor

A walk around the Bracebridge Ponds at noon today turned up seven Buffleheads and about a dozen American Tree Sparrows...the first I've seen of both species this fall. There were two American Coots and a female Northern Shoveler in cell 1 and a female Northern Pintail in cell 2. The lone male Lesser Scaup continues to reside in cell 4. A single Rusty Blackbird was on the roadway south of cell 2.

 

 

Re(1): Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst
Posted on October 10, 2016 at 10:09:13 AM by janice house

Same route as yesterday, 7 bluebirds, 2 palm warblers, a savannah, song and chipping sparrow, good number of golden crowned kinglets and a coyote in wonderful condition pouncing on rodents.

 

 

Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst
Posted on October 9, 2016 at 08:53:24 AM by janice house

I just came back from a walk towards hwy 11, a kingfisher was calling along Beaver Creek, juncos and white crowned sparrows were foraging in the grass/weeds. I counted 18 golden crowned kinglets flying from pine to pine by the creek then over to the pine trees along the driveway of the old sheep farm, at least 6 more were calling close by.

 

 

Bluebirds
Posted on October 9, 2016 at 06:16:24 AM by FrancesGualtieri

I was really surprised to see a flock of bluebirds in our yard in Vankoughnet yesterday afternoon.
Frances Gualtieri

 

 

Juncos
Posted on October 8, 2016 at 08:35:58 AM by ksmith

Large flock of Juncos on my front lawn. Port Sydney, Hood road.

 

 

South Gravenhurst Future Rail Trail
Posted on October 8, 2016 at 08:25:11 AM by George Bryant

Jas. Goltz, Muskoka's pre-eminent botanist, during another whirlwind visit joined me Oct 07 morning for a trek south from Shoppers' Drug Mart along the almost abandoned railway tracks. Birds were everywhere: hundreds of Juncos, dozens of Palm Warblers, Chipping, White-crowned, White-throated Sparrows, one Blue-headed Vireo singing as though it were still spring, a Rusty Blackbird, Merlin. Had we started from Canadian Tire and headed north the birds would have been in fine view, not all backlit. Five Clouded sulphur, one Cabbage white and one Monarch!, my last for the year. Lanceolate and New England aster were in great display as well as Heath Aster, only the third location for Muskoka. Lance-leaved Coreopsis also showing well. One of these days this may become a railroad trail from Toronto to North Bay!!

 

 

Butter and Eggs, Turkeys, and Maples
Posted on October 7, 2016 at 04:27:42 PM by Barbara Taylor

This past week in Bracebridge there have been several patches of Butter and Eggs in bloom, a couple of Wild Turkeys have been strolling around the Lagoons, and some Maple trees have reached their peak colour.  photo1  photo2  photo3

 

 

Re(1): Gadwall
Posted on October 8, 2016 at 01:59:46 PM by Barbara Taylor

The Gadwall was still in cell 1 this morning, and now there are two Pied-billed Grebes. There must have been a big migration overnight - lots of Dark-eyed Juncos, White-crowned, White-throated, Swamp, and Song Sparrows, as well as two Lincoln's and two Savannah Sparrows. Three Rusty Blackbirds were foraging along the roadway west of cell 4 and a couple Palm Warblers were north of cell 4.  Rusty Blackbird munching on a grasshopper while playing hide-and-seek with my camera: photo 

 

 

Gadwall
Posted on October 7, 2016 at 01:00:23 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning there was a male Gadwall in cell 1 at the Bracebridge Ponds.

Some of the other birds seen were:

American Wigeon 3
Northern Pintail 4
Green-winged Teal 10
Ring-necked Duck 1
Greater Scaup 1
Lesser Scaup 1
Pied-billed Grebe 1
American Pipit 1

 

 

Re(1): American Woodcock
Posted on October 8, 2016 at 09:20:18 AM by janice house

Heard again at dusk, same location

 

 

American Woodcock
Posted on October 7, 2016 at 06:52:22 AM by janice house

I just heard the twittering of woodcock feathers in flight in the farm field across from our house, its been a while.

 

 

Coot photobombed
Posted on October 6, 2016 at 07:16:10 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds I tried to get a photo of the American Coot as it swam away from me. When I got home and checked the photos...photobombed by a Hooded Merganser.  photo

 

 

Re(1): Only Monarch seen in my Garden
Posted on October 8, 2016 at 01:49:48 PM by Barbara Taylor

There was a very worn looking male Monarch flying south at the Bracebridge Ponds this morning. First one I've seen in a while, but several were in the area earlier in the summer. Didn't see even one in our yard this year though...not very many bees either. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Only Monarch seen in my Garden
Posted on October 6, 2016 at 04:42:37 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

There is a beautiful monarch butterfly nectaring on stiff goldenrod right now. The goldenrod is in my Prairie Meadow. The only one I have seen here in 2016. Can't imagine it will make it South!

 

 

Dark Eyed Juncos
Posted on October 5, 2016 at 06:50:00 PM by janice house

Just came in, at least 70 juncos in the backyard along with a dozen white crowned sparrows, 2 white throated sparrows, 2 chipping sparrows and a red winged black bird just left. Doe Lake Rd Gravenhurst

 

 

Turkey Vultures
Posted on October 4, 2016 at 11:24:11 PM by Barbara Taylor

Today around 3 p.m. I counted 27 Turkey Vultures migrating southward in one large group. There was also a single Red-tailed Hawk soaring near them. (Bracebridge)

 

 

Rusty Blackbird
Posted on October 4, 2016 at 05:32:34 PM by Leslie

Seen today along the stream beside the very cool Dads of Muskoka disc golf course at Peake Fields, Bracebridge. Many mushrooms also in evidence throughout the course.

 

 

great horned owl & others
Posted on October 3, 2016 at 09:11:29 PM by John Challis

After lamenting a few weeks ago that I hadn't heard an owl all spring and summer, a great horned owl called out on the road just a few minutes ago. I tried calling back to it, but the response was from a barred owl off in the distance, trying to prompt a different conversation. This morning I watched a male and a female white throated sparrow foraging together. Green River Dr., Washago.

 

 

Yellow-throated Vireo
Posted on October 3, 2016 at 07:39:55 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

For the record, new for my species list. Mid-September in my pin cherries, a Yellow-throated Vireo. No pictures, though I tried!

 

 

Port Carling Sightings Today
Posted on October 3, 2016 at 07:34:29 PM by Eleanor Kee Wellman

Four male and one female Wood Duck on the river by Foodland in Port Carling. Also, a flock of 10 White-crowned Sparrows. Six adults and four juveniles.

 

 

Northern Pintails
Posted on October 3, 2016 at 01:35:58 PM by Barbara Taylor

This morning at the Bracebridge Ponds there were three female Northern Pintails in cell 2. The American Coot, American Wigeons, female Northern Shoveler, and the Pied-billed Grebe were all still in cell 1. Other birds seen included American Black Duck, Hooded Merganser, Lesser Scaup, Ring-necked Duck, Green-winged Teal, American Pipit, Rusty Blackbird, Savannah Sparrow, and Lincoln's Sparrow. Six Turkey Vultures were soaring southward even though a misty rain was falling. There were at least 50 Wood Ducks at the north end of cell 1, with many males now back in their colourful plumage.

 

 

Some mushrooms seen today
Posted on October 2, 2016 at 09:51:35 PM by Al Sinclair

Good year for mushrooms. Photographed a few near the house today.

Armillaria (complex) - Honey Mushrooms  photo

Entoloma abortivum - Hunter's Hearts  photo

Hericium coraloides - Comb Tooth  photo

Clavulinopsis corniculata  photo

Mycena pura  photo

Hydnum umbilicatum - Sweet Tooth  photo

 

 

Bracebridge Ponds - American Coot, Least Flycatcher and others
Posted on October 1, 2016 at 09:07:36 PM by dbritton

This morning I birded Bracebridge Ponds from about 7:30 to 10:30 am. In addition to the common waterfowl species in the cells, the continuing American Coot was in Cell 1 and there were two female Northern Pintail in Cell 2.

Land bird migration was in evidence with good numbers of Song and White-crowned sparrows present and smaller numbers of Swamp, Savannah and White-throated. Lincoln's Sparrows were in above average numbers with 5 seen at various points (mainly around the margins of Cell 4). The best warbler flock was found on the south side of Cell 4 and included many Yellow-rumped Warblers, 2 Orange-crowned and 1 Nashville, as well as single Eastern Phoebe, Golden-crowned Kinglet and Blue-headed Vireo. Palm Warblers were also present in unusual numbers with about 12 seen in the area.

The most surprising bird of the day was a late empidonax flycatcher in the trees in Kerr Park along the fence line of the dog park. I was able to observe it fairly closely for several minutes and, based on the broad, complete white eye-ring, short primary projection, pale whitish underparts and greyish back, I feel confident it was a Least Flycatcher.

 

 

Re(2): Honey mushrooms
Posted on October 5, 2016 at 06:16:53 AM by FrancesGualtieri

I have never seen honey mushrooms on living trees, only dead ones.
Frances Gualtieri

 

Re(1): Honey mushrooms
Posted on October 3, 2016 at 03:54:35 PM by DBurton

I read that this fungus kills living trees. I invite comments.

 

 

Honey mushrooms
Posted on October 1, 2016 at 08:04:18 PM by FrancesGualtieri

We have been finding an abundance of honey mushrooms (armillariella mellea) in the past few days. I'll run out of freezer space before we run out of mushrooms. We've picked about six shopping bags full - added some to a ragu tonight, and I see a winter of gourmet beef stroganoff and mushroom soup. We also picked some pholiota squarrosoides which we have found tasty in the past.
Frances Gualtieri
Vankoughnet