Saturday, 28 April 2012
Cold and windy times at Pelee
It's been a while since I've made a post or gone through the backlog of emails piling up since I haven't had a chance! I've been birding pretty much nonstop since my last post, with little to show for it. Late April birding at Point Pelee can be really hit and miss. When the weather conditions line up we often get a major pulse of neotropical migrants and a healthy dose of rarities this time of year. But when the weather is cool with strong north winds, as has been the case for close to a week, the number of birds is really meager! Very little migration occurred since the last pulse on April 17-20. This brought rarities like Say's Phoebe, Fork-tailed Flycatcher,Western Grebe, Bells's Vireo, and Western Tanager to southern Ontario. Most of the birds at Pelee have left and nothing has arrived. For instance, I have had 3 days straight where I've seen less than 15 warblers! I mean individuals, not species!! There have still been some year birds in the last few days, however. They include: -Sedge Wren and Upland Sandpiper while unsuccessfully chasing the latest report of Say's Phoebe from Carden -Chimney Swift -Common Tern -Ovenbird, Common Yellowthroat, and Yellow Warbler -Lincoln's Sparrow It's not all bad news, however. Yesterday I was able to photograph only the second park record of Common Raven since 1970. It was first seen on Tuesday by Alan. It was really beat up..who knows, maybe it was a Chihuahuan Raven... Additionally, there was a new 'flood' of birds that came in last night. I was greeted at the tip by a singing Rose-breasted Grosbeak, and later, came across a flock of perhaps 100 Yellow-rumped Warblers at Sanctuary. Mixed in were Pine, Nashville, Palm, Black-and-white, and Black-throated Green Warblers as well as White-eyed Vireo and a few other odds and ends. Finally, the weather forecast is starting to line up and next week could be fantastic. With the warm, southerly air and the increase in birders out looking, the craziness should begin in earnest. Gettin excited!!