[Ontbirds] Hamilton Naturalists Club Birding Report - Friday, March 13th, 2015

Cheryl Edgecombe cheryle29 at cogeco.ca
Fri Mar 13 10:25:29 EDT 2015


Ring-necked Duck (RNDU)
Surf Scoter (SUSC)
White-winged Scoter (WWSC)
Black Scoter (BLSC)
Red-throated Loon (RTLO)
Pied-billed Grebe (PBGR)
Red-necked Grebe (RNGR)
Great Blue Heron (GBHE)
Turkey Vulture (TUVU)
Bald Eagle (BAEA)
Sharp-shinned Hawk (SSHA)
Red-tailed Hawk (RTHA)
Rough-legged Hawk (RLHA)
Merlin (MERL)
Killdeer (KILL)
Iceland Gull (ICGU)
Glaucous Gull (GLGU)
American Crow (AMCR)
Common Raven (CORA)
Horned Lark (HOLA)
Eastern Bluebird (EABL)
Hermit Thrush (HETH)
Lapland Longspur (LALO)
Snow Bunting (SNBU)
Yellow-rumped Warbler (YRWA)
Fox Sparrow (FOSP)
White-throated Sparrow (WTSP)
Red-winged Blackbird (RWBL)
Common Grackle (COGR)
Brown-headed Cowbird (BHCO)
Purple Finch (PUFI)
Common Redpoll (CORE)
Pine Siskin (PISI)
Evening Grosbeak (EVGR)

Well, it looks like we just might make it till spring.  This week has seen a
significant change in temperatures and winds and although not as many
migrants as some other areas, things are certainly starting to move in the
Hamilton Study Area (HSA).  Our top bird this week is the HOARY REDPOLL,
seen last weekend at J.C. Saddington Park in Mississauga amongst a flock of
Common Redpolls.

Migrants this week include a number of Red-throated Loons seen on the water
at the lift bridge and off Green Road in Stoney Creek.  Also here was a
Red-necked Grebe.  A significant date record was a Blue-winged Teal found at
Bronte, a wee bit early for this bird.  An increase in the number of
waterfowl around indicates there are birds moving in such as Redhead,
Northern Shoveler and Canvasback. A Pied-billed Grebe was a welcome guest at
the harbour as well.  Great Blue Herons started to arrive with one getting a
prime spot at the rookery near Binbrook and two landing on the ice out on
the bay.  Turkey Vultures were reported over Dundas and along the 403.
Ring-billed Gulls have significantly increased in numbers through the week.
Killdeer were reported at Canada Centre for Inland Waters, over Princess
Point, at Grassy Lake in Glen Morris and over the Hawkwatch at Beamer.
American Crows have been migrating in numbers all week, this is a good time
to listen for the nasal sounds of Fish Crows.  Hermit Thrush and Purple
Finches were reported on Patterson Road last weekend.  The Purple Finches
are definitely migrants as they have been absent all winter.  There were
reports of a couple of Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles but
surprisingly enough they have not arrived in force.  Pine Siskins were seen
at a feeder in South Burlington, these could be migrants or wintering birds
moving around at this point.  Lastly Evening Grosbeaks were heard on Hunter
Road in Grimsby near the railway tracks.

The Niagara Peninsula Hawkwatch started on March 1st and the first week of
the watch was brutal with few to no birds, cold temperatures and winds.
This week has seen an increase in activity with Turkey Vulture, Bald Eagle,
Sharp-shinned, Red-tailed and Rough-legged Hawk and Merlin reported.  There
are a few opportunities to volunteer as counters but if you are not up for
that, helping the counters is always an option and fun to get to know your
raptors from underneath.  The Hawkwatch is located at Beamer Memorial
Conservation Area on Quarry Road off Ridge Road in Grimsby.  Check it out.

In the odds and sods, all three scoters were seen along the shore of western
Lake Ontario. A Ring-necked Duck and three American Wigeon were seen at the
Desjardins Canal in the week. Two Harlequin Ducks were seen off Gairloch
Gardens in Oakville, up to 16 Bald Eagles have been seen on the ice on the
bay.  This number has increased through the week indicating that some of
these are likely migrants.  Iceland Gull was seen at the end of Green Road
in Stoney Creek and others flying along the lakeshore at Fruitland Rd, at 40
mile creek and on the Hamilton Bay.  A Common Raven was seen at the edge of
the circle at Winston Churchill and the 407.  Eastern Bluebirds were seen at
Raspberry House at the Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG) Arboretum.  A fun group
to see was a flock of Horned Larks, Snow Buntings with up to 4 Lapland
Longspurs mixed in at Dyments Farm on Fallsview Road.  A Fox Sparrow was a
frustrating guest to see behind Olympic Arena, up to three Yellow-rumped
Warblers, a sizable group of White-throated Sparrows and a Red-winged
Blackbird were also seen here.

As four letter codes have been a hot topic this week and I have fielded some
emails of interest in them, I thought I would throw in the codes for a
learning curve.  Go to http://www.birdpop.org/alphacodes.htm for a complete
list, its helpful for banders and recorders alike.

Have a great week.
Cheryl Edgecombe

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