[Ontbirds] Ottawa/ Gatineau: recent sightings to July 26, 2018

Gregory Zbitnew gkzbitnew at gmail.com
Thu Jul 26 16:38:13 EDT 2018

Ottawa Field Naturalists' Club
Ottawa/Gatineau (50 Km radius from Parliament Hill) E. Ontario, W. Quebec
Compiler:  Gregory Zbitnew at sightings at ofnc.ca

July 26, 2018

A major rarity ended, at least temporarily, the summer doldrums. A RED
KNOT, not seen in the region for 10 years, was flying along the Ottawa
River on the 22nd and it landed at Shirley’s Bay, where it was seen for
most of the day. If that were not enough, 2 WHIMBRELS and a RUDDY TURNSTONE
were also there, although the WHIMBRELS touched down for less than an hour.

This week there was major enhancement of the quantities and variety of
SHOREBIRDS, until the rains came. Shirley’s Bay habitat was still ideal as
of the 22nd, when there were nearly 200 birds of up to 10 species, over 130
of which were a flock of SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPERS.  On the 23rd there were
nearly 400 birds of 8 species, with nearly 300 SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPERS.  Other
uncommon species there this week included BAIRD’S SANDPIPER on the 23rd and
4 STILT SANDPIPERS on the 24th. For the next several weeks, this spot will
merit regular inspection, as the water levels decline (we hope).

A weather change on the 22nd brought blustery winds and some rain. It was
likely this that brought the SHOREBIRD fallout at Shirley’s Bay on the 22nd.
 Heavy rain on the 23rd and especially the 25th has eliminated most of the
river habitat for a little while.

Other areas with SHOREBIRDS included:

1.      Crysler has good habitat as of the 25th, but only 35 birds of 4
species, mostly a flock of unidentified PEEPS.

2.      Embrun has some good habitat. On the 21st there were about 60 birds
of 7 species.  On the 25th there were 200 birds of 10 species including

3.      Petrie Island (west of the causeway) had good habitat with up to 40
birds of 5 species on the 22nd. Of course the rains have eliminated this

4.      A RED-NECKED PHALAROPE was reported at the Giroux Road ponds on the

5.      The Ottawa River shore (in Ontario) has a lot of really good
habitat.  There were about 50 birds of 7 species at Ottawa Beach on the 25th
.  Also there was a RUDDY TURNSTONE on the 22nd and 3 on the 25th. A
RED-NECKED PHALAROPE was there on the 24th. Up to 23 SANDERLINGS have been
seen from here to Shirley’s Bay until the 25th.   SANDERLINGS have been
seen elsewhere, including Constance Bay, Embrun and Barnsdale Road.

6.      Parc Brébeuf had 30 birds of 4 species on the 24th.  Finally a few
SHOREBIRDS in Gatineau!

7.      Almonte had 35 birds of 6 species on the 24th.

The low water on the Ottawa River had also resulted in good sightings of
marsh birds when they make forays to the shallow water/ mud flats near the
edge of the marsh. Both Shirley’s bay and Petrie Island have been good for
RAILS and COMMON GALLINULE. 2 LEAST BITTERNS were showing well at Petrie
Island until the 21st.  2 LEAST BITTERNS were at Baie McLaurin on the 20th.

Aside from SHOREBIRDS, there has been little to report. Some noteworthy
sightings included:

1.      A female NORTHERN PINTAIL was at Shirley’s bay on the 21st-22nd.


3.      nes on the 21st.

4.      Small numbers of CASPIAN TERNS are at Shirley’s Bay almost every

5.      1 BLACK TERN at Petrie Island on the 24th.

6.      3 continuing SANDHILL CRANES were on March Road as late as the 23rd.

7.      On the 25th, 2 UPLAND SANDPIPERS were in Constance Bay along with
120 BOBOLINKS, a very high number.

There are some significant signs of migration.  SWALLOWS have started to
flock, and SONGBIRDS have started to disperse from their nesting grounds.  Now
is a good time to start checking the migrant traps.

Thanks to everyone who contributed bird observations. We encourage everyone
to report their bird sightings on eBird for the benefit of the entire
birding community.

*Reminder regarding access to the Shirley’s Bay Causeway:*

DND has amended our access procedure. You must call Range Control
(613-991-5740) for permission, state that you are an OFNC member and give
your name. Finally, you must call again when you have left the area.  DND
would also like to be informed if you see anyone on the property who should
not be there, such as boats in the bay or people fishing on the causeway.
They are trespassing and DND will deal with the situation.

The OFNC has provided DND with a list of OFNC members who HAVE SPECIFICALLY
REQUESTED access. DND will check, so make sure that your membership is up
to date and that you have requested that the OFNC put you on the access
list.  This list has already been sent to DND this spring and will be
updated occasionally.  To get on the next access list, please contact
membership at ofnc.ca.

Good birding.

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