[Ontbirds] Carden Alvar - June 25th

Geoff - Birds avocet at rogers.com
Thu Jun 25 21:12:04 EDT 2009

Terrie Smith and I did our 3rd run to Carden for the Grassland Survey study. We had a lot of song, but most interesting were 24 Upland Sandpipers along Cty Rd 6 and Wylie Rd, 10+ Grasshopper Sparrows and 3 Clay-coloured Sparrows amongst the usual suspects. No sedge Wrens at the Sedge Marsh but one was singling near the junction of Wylie and McNamee Rds. But where are the kestrels? I've been up to the alvar 6 times this spring and have not seen one kestrel. I know some are about but this is a bit scary! Are they also suffering some serious decline in numbers?

Lots of butterflies today, along Wylie Rd in particular, including a massive emergence of hundreds of Skippers (European - I think - still struggling to identify these pesky skippers so pls bear with me!) + White Admirals (lots), Monarch Butterfly (pay attention Don Davis!), Mourning Cloak, a couple of Bronze Coppers and several Canadian Tiger Swallowtails. 

Also of note, my resident Cooper's Hawks (Ajax) have suddenly become more visible as the young grow - both male and female being visible nearly every day carrying food to the nest. Most interesting was my wife's observation of the female carrying nest material presumably to repair the nest as the rambunctious youngsters do damage. Last year she (the Cooper's not my wife) was seen to do the same nest repair on July 13th.

Geoff Carpentier

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