Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Long Point Day 10

Long Point; The Tip
Our final morning at the Tip was nothing like the previous morning. It was a warm and clear day, which probably produced the big clearout of warblers and flycatchers that we witnessed. Only a handful remained, and the dominant species found in the nets was once again Blue Jay, with well over 100 ringed until 10.00 when we left the tip. It was sad to see the tip go, as the team we had worked with were all excellent, and it was nice being part of such a close unit.

Ringing: Northern Parula,
-Northern Parula
-Purple Martin
-Blackpoll Warbler
-Ruby-throated Hummingbird
-Baltimore Oriole

Northern Mockingbird - Once again a small wander between net rounds turned productive when I found a very showy individual near the path towards the Tree Swallow cabin. Sadly I did not have my camera on me to take any photos, and I was unable to push the bird into the nets. Still and exciting bird to see again after our distant encounter in Vancouver!
Northern Parula - After trying for five days to drive the long staying bird into MX1 today I was finally rewarded, but not as I would have thought. I was at the net extracting a Northern Waterthrush when the Parula came from the other side hit the net right next to me. Given that last time it had slipped through, this time I took no chances, dropped the Waterthrush back in and grabbed the Parula, before I was able to extract and then ring it; a young male.

Species List:
Long Point; The Tip: Northern Mockingbird, Northern Parula, Green Heron, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Red-breasted Merganser, Turkey Vulture, American Herring Gull, Caspian Tern, Common Tern, Mourning Dove, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Least Flycatcher, Eastern Phoebe, Eastern Kingbird, Purple Martin, Tree Swallow, Barn Swallow, Blue Jay, Marsh Wren, Veery, American Robin, Gray Catbird, American Pipit, Yellow Warbler, Magnolia Warbler, Black-throated Blue Warbler, Myrtle Warbler, Palm Warbler, Blackpoll Warbler, American Redstart, Northern  Waterthrush, Common Yellowthroat, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, Chipping Sparrow, Savanah Sparrow, Lincolns Sparrow, White-throated Sparrow, Red-winged Blackbird, Common Grackle, Brown-headed Cowbird, Baltimore Oriole, American Goldfinch, Cedar Waxwing, Mallard, Chimney Swift, 

Kirtlands Warbler
Our departure from the tip had very fortunately coincided with the appearance of only the 8th record of Kirtlands Warbler for Long Point. This holy grail of American Wood Warblers is one of Americas most rare and local bird species and not something I expected to see. So when news broke mid-morning we suddenly became very apprehensive to leave the Tip and make sure we see the bird.
We were at the location for midday to find that we needn’t have worried, as the bird was showing an absolute peach. Its chosen setup were the gardens a few streets away from the observatory, where it showed brilliantly all day. I was able to get some really nice shots of the bird, despite it always remaining on the wrong side of the light. At one point it flew right through the crowd of twitchers. What a bird!
This is not a species I dared even hope for on this trip, so to see one is pretty bonkers!
-Kirtlands Warbler

Bacus Woods & 4th Concession Street
Once we had successfully seen the Kirtlands Warbler, and I had spent some length of time with it, we moved on to try and mop up some of the other species we had missed whilst we had been on the Tip. First call was Bacus woods to see if any breeding warblers had returned yet, but sadly the woods were almost dead, with just a few woodpeckers and Yellow-throated Vireo.
Next we tried a nearby site for Louisiana Waterthrush, but unfortunately we were unable to locate one. There were good numbers of birds around this area though, and we got to watch a number of really cool open grassland species.
On our way back we called off at an expanse of marsh where we saw our first American Black Terns of the trip, as well as getting excellent views of Sandhill Crane. There were also a couple of Trumpeter Swans sitting distantly out on an island in the middle of the marsh.

Eastern Bluebird - The farmland that we walked around had two pairs of these stunning birds, allowing us to easily get the best views we had got of this species so far. As before though they were extremely flighty and very mobile, and with their nests in the area we did not try to get closer.
Great-crested Flycatcher - Having only seen a single bird at the tip it was nice to get another look at these impressive sized birds. There were at least two hunting from the hedgerow along the side of the road, often coming down into the road to pick up insects before returning to their perch.
Sandhill Crane - On the way back we spotted two of these in a ditch right next to the road. Although they kept a low profile in the reeds it was nice to have another look at these characteristic American migrants.
-Sandhill Crane
-Forsters Tern

Species List:
Bacus Woods & 4th Concession Street: Canada Warbler, Common Gallinule, Sandhill Crane, Black Tern, Yellow-throated Vireo, Trumpeter Swan, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Hairy Woodpecker, Eastern Bluebird, Pine Siskin, Great Crested Flycatcher, Gadwall, Bufflehead, Black-capped Chickadee, Forsters Tern, Northern Harrier, House Finch, Greater Scaup, Lesser Scaup, Great Blue Heron, Turkey Vulture, Killdeer, Canada Goose, Mallard, Mourning Dove, American Coot, Northern Flicker, Eastern Kingbird, Eastern Phoebe, Tree Swallow, Barn Swallow, American Robin, Starling, Yellow Warbler, Palm Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Chipping Sparrow, House Sparrow, Northern Cardinal, Song Sparrow, Field Sparrow, Red-winged Blackbird, Common Grackle, Brown-headed Cowbird, Baltimore Oriole, American Goldfinch, Pied-billed Grebe, Slavonian Grebe,

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