[Ontbirds] Cooper's Marsh - Virginia Rails, Wilson's Snipe, Green Heron

Patrick Blake pjblake22 at hotmail.com
Sat Jun 28 22:13:57 EDT 2008

I spent the better part of the late morning and afternoon birding Cooper's Marsh in South Lancaster.  Although the weather for this long weekend is being anything but patriotic, the birds were accommodating.  VIRGINIA RAILS were out in force, providing excellent views the majority of the time.  I saw approximately 10-15 rails, and heard an additional 5.  There were also 4 WILSON'S SNIPES which also provided excellent views along the boardwalk and at the blinds.  An OSPREY made an overhead flyby and was simultaneously mobbed by a RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD and an EASTERN KINGBIRD.  In the wooded areas along the marsh proper were WARBLING and RED-EYED VIREOS, ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAKS (2 males), VEERIES, EASTERN PHOEBES, and a single sparrow closely resembling a LINCOLN'S SPARROW, although it had some song sparrow attributes, so I'm not entirely sure which it was.  Near one of the blinds were two GREEN HERONS, and a single SPOTTED SANDPIPER that periodically flew past the blind.

Good birding and happy Canada Day!


DIRECTIONS (courtesy NeilyWorld): The Cooper Marsh Conservation Area, on the St. Lawrence River near Lancaster, is around an hour and a three-quarters ESE of Ottawa by car. Take Highway 417 from Ottawa east 60 km to Highway 138 (exit 58 to Cornwall). Follow Hwy 138 32 km SSE to Cornwall Centre Road. Turn right or WSW on it to continue on 138, go 0.7 km to Brookdale Avenue. Turn left or SSE on it to continue on 138. Follow Brookdale (138) 0.9 km over Highway 401 and take exit 789 east. Follow the 401 east for 24.3 km to Highway 34 (exit 814), just south of Lancaster. Turn right or south and go 1 km to South Lancaster and then turn right or southwest onto Highway 2. Follow Highway 2 for 3.0 km to the turnoff for Cooper Marsh Conservation Area visitor's centre on the left or east.
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