[Ontbirds] Lapland Longspurs, Haldimand

John Miles miles at kwic.com
Sun Apr 11 20:26:04 EDT 2004

The annual spring migration of Lapland Longspurs, from winering grounds in
and around the Texas panhandle,  going NE up the St. Laurence valley onwards
to their summering grounds in Greenland is underway. 5 flocks were noticed
going east over Selkirk Provincial Park this mourning. These flocks usually
comprise of 10 to 20 individuals and can continue to move until about mid
May. However flocks of up to 500 birds have been found in corn stuble fields
as late as Mother's Day weekend. The birds usually are a couple of hundred
feet up and are heard before being seen. Once heard if you can locate them
before they come over you they are stricking in full breeding plumage. These
flocks seem to like moving several hundred metres north of the Lake Erie
These longspur flocks have a very charactoristic formation. Several birds
fly about 15-20 feet apart in a horizontal line. Depending upon the number
of birds in a flock there can be several lines each as far apart as the
birds are in the horizonatal line. Also there can be lines stacked on top of
each other. Again each line of birds are separated about the same distance
above each other as the birds are horizontally.

John Miles
Jarvis, On
miles at kwic.com
Haldimand Bird Observatory

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