[Ontbirds]Townsend Lagoons - Aug 9/04

Geoff Carpentier geoffcarpentier at rogers.com
Tue Aug 10 10:09:54 EDT 2004

Townsend Lagoons - Aug 9/04

Last night I birded the Townsend lagoons. Although the numbers are down from
recent reports, there still were lots of bids there and the variety was
excellent. Almost all of the birds were in adult plumage, but many were
molting out of their breeding regalia into the more subdued winter plumages.
The following are actual counts of birds, but as you can appreciate I might
have missed one or two. Of interest was that, although there was some
intermixing between species, there clearly was some associational [is that a
word?] behaviour occurring, which I presume was due to food availability and
water depth not social choices. Groups of Least Sandpipers were clearly
separated from the Semi-palmated Sandpipers, and the Lesser Yellowlegs were
closely associating with each other along the west side of the lagoon
essentially separated from all other species except the phalarope. Here and
there, particularly along the east side of the lagoon, intermixing was more
evident. The Pectorals, Semi-palmated Plovers and Killdeer seemed to be more
randomly distributed along the drier fringes of the lagoons.

 Killdeer - 64

Semi-palmated Plover 20

Lesser Yellowlegs - 191

Solitary Sandpiper - 1

Spotted Sandpiper - 5

Least Sandpiper - 279

Semi-palmated Sandpiper - 199

Pectoral Sandpiper - 13

Stilt Sandpiper - 1 [high breeding plumage]

Short-billed Sandpiper - 1

Red-necked Phalarope - 1 [transitional plumage]

Of interest to me were the eleven Bobolinks frolicking [how poetic] along
the banks of the western lagoon throughout. A visiting birder told me that
the Cattle Egret was still present along King Road at the junction of
Haldimand Rd 3, SE of Dunnville.

Directions: From Hwy 6, south of Hagersville, and about a kilometre north of
Jarvis, watch for a sign that says "Townsend" on your right and follow this
paved road to the four-way stop. Turn left and follow it about 1.5
kilometers to Concession 14, the house with the kid's playhouse in the front
yard with the A/C will be on the corner of this intersection. Follow it
about a kilometre to the lagoon gates on your right. All the birds were in
the first lagoon.

Geoff Carpentier
Ajax, Ontario

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