[Ontbirds] Presqu'ile Birding Report for Week Ending March 30, 2017.

Fred Helleiner fhelleiner at trentu.ca
Thu Mar 30 16:39:35 EDT 2017

Bird migration has been in full swing at Presqu'ile Provincial Park, 
with a litany of new arrivals, and birders have been taking full 
advantage of it, with considerable success.

In a case of being in the right place at the right time, one observer on 
March 25 spotted a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE as it came in with a 
flock of other geese and landed out of sight in the marsh.  In a similar 
case on March 26, a few observers were at the lighthouse when two flocks 
of SNOW GEESE totalling an estimated 200 birds flew past heading east 
into a strong headwind.  That total is an order of magnitude greater 
than any previous sighting of that species at Presqu'ile, which is 
further west than their usual flight line.  Probably the persistent 
easterly wind had blown them off course.  It is possible that the flock 
of 150 seen landing in a field across from Presqu'ile on March 27 
represented the same birds.  Yesterday, in addition to the regular MUTE 
SWANS, there were two TRUMPETER SWANS and five TUNDRA SWANS off 26 
Bayshore Road.  There were no surprises among the many ducks spotted 
during the waterfowl festival on the weekend, but two SURF SCOTERS were 
seen off the lighthouse yesterday.  Nor weas it a surprise that ten WILD 
TURKEYS were seen twice in the past week.  On the other hand, grebes 
have been of interest.  PIED-BILLED GREBES have taken up residence off 
the camp office viewing platform, three HORNED GREBES were out in Lake 
Ontario off the day use area, and at least five RED-NECKED GREBES were 
off the lighthouse yesterday.  Two AMERICAN COOTS arrived on Friday.  
Separate independent sightings oF a SANDHILL CRANE on March 25, never 
common at Presqu'ile, were likely of the same bird.  The first 
BONAPARTE'S GULL of the year was over the marsh on March 25 and again on 
March 29.  No CASPIAN TERNS or RED-THROATED LOONS have yet been 
reported, but both are expected soon.  Single COMMON LOONS were sighted 
on March 26 and 29.  A few DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS and GREAT BLUE 
HERONS have been back for several days.

A TURKEY VULTURE flew over yesterday, but the highlight of the weekend 
for many Park visitors not initiated into serious birding was an adult 
BALD EAGLE that flew around in front of a group of birders and then 
spent most of the rest of the weekend perched in the same distant tree 
for anyone to observe through a spotting scope. Among other raptors seen 
have been seen in three different parts of the Park in the past few 
days, and PILEATED WOODPECKERS continue to be seen.  EASTERN PHOEBES 
have been present since March 28.  Two COMMON RAVENS, perhaps a mated 
pair, flew past on March 28.  There has been an uptick in BROWN CREEPER 
sightings, and the first WINTER WREN since December was in Jobes' Woods 
this week.  Yesterday two EASTERN BLUEBIRDS were in the calf pasture and 
two EASTERN MEADOWLARKS were near the picnic shelter in the day use area.

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. Access to the offshore islands is 

at this time of year to prevent disturbance to the colonial nesting 
birds there.
Birders are encouraged to record their observations on the bird sightings
board provided near the campground office by The Friends of Presqu'ile Park
and to fill out a rare bird report for species not listed there.

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

Fred Helleiner
186 Bayshore Road
Brighton, Ontario
K0K 1H0
If visiting, access via Presqu'ile Provincial Park

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