[Ontbirds] Presqu'ile Birding Report for Week Ending February 19, 2009.

Fred Helleiner fhelleiner at trentu.ca
Thu Feb 19 21:04:55 EST 2009

Not only has the spring waterfowl migration begun in earnest at 
Presqu'ile Provincial Park, but various other species of birds have also 
been moving into and around the Park to a much greater extent than in 
the past few weeks.

On February 13, the first three Trumpeter Swans of the season flew in 
from Lake Ontario and landed among the Mute Swans in Presqu'ile Bay.  
There was one adult with no evident bands or wing tags and there were 
two young birds, one of which had a silver band on the left leg.  All 
three were seen two days later, and the adult continued to be seen, and 
sometimes heard, for the next three days.  Also in Presqu'ile Bay are 
several thousand Redheads and Greater Scaup and a few dozen 
Canvasbacks.  The government dock on Bayshore Road provides a good 
vantage point, but the main concentration of ducks and swans is 
concentrated at the edge of the ice, wherever that may happen to be on 
any given day.  With continued westerly winds, the calf pasture may 
prove to be an even better viewing point.  As yet there have been no 
sightings of Ring-necked Ducks since early January, but a patient scan 
of the huge flocks may prove fruitful.

A Cooper's Hawk has made two recent appearances along Bayshore Road, 
where possible victims of its attacks are concentrated at bird feeders.  
Two Wild Turkeys have been spotted twice in the past week just inside 
the entrance to the Park.  There were two Glaucous Gulls on the ice of 
Presqu'ile Bay on February 15, both visible at once within the field of 
a spotting scope.  A Snowy Owl was also seen there on February 18 and 
another was reported on February 14.  Three visiting birders saw two 
Pileated Woodpeckers on February 14.  Two Northern Shrikes were seen on 
February 12.  A Common Raven flew high over Jobes' Woods on February 14 
and was heard a few minutes later near the lighthouse.  Also on that 
date, a flock of eight Pine Grosbeaks was seen and photographed at High 
Bluff campground.  Another flock of about the same size was at 191 
Bayshore Road three days later.  Among the many Common Redpolls and Pine 
Siskins patronizing the feeders at 186 Bayshore Road on a regular basis 
were single Hoary Redpolls on February 16 and 17.

To reach Presqu'ile Provincial Park, follow the signs from Brighton.  
Locations within the Park are shown on a map at the back of a tabloid 
that is available at the Park gate.  The ice between Owen Point and Gull 
Island may be unsafe depending on recent wind and temperature 
conditions.  Beware of hidden ice patches.

Questions and comments about bird sightings at Presqu'ile may be 
directed to: FHELLEINER at TRENTU.CA.

Fred Helleiner

186 Bayshore Road,
Brighton, Ontario, Canada, K0K 1H0
VOICE: (613) 475 5309
If visiting, access via Presqu'ile Provincial Park.

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