OVERVIEW: Very few people have been birding Presqu’ile this week so coverage is limited. For the most part migration is ticking along more or less on schedule but there has been no significant wave of migrants yet and only a few early birds.
Hooded Merganser: a female flew out from an interior marsh in the Fingers on 20 Apr which might suggest local breeding.
Red-throated Loon: a bird in non-breeding plumage was seen off Beach 3 on 19 Apr. This Arctic breeder appears in small numbers in Popham Bay (off the beach) during late April and early May so scan the Bay on calm mornings.
Spotted Sandpiper: The first of the year was seen on 20 Apr. This is the last of the local breeding shorebirds to arrive (the others being Killdeer, American Woodcock and Wilson’s Snipe).
Dunlin: A bird in non-breeding plumage was seen on the beach on 19 Apr. This is ahead of the main Arctic bound flight, which happens in the latter half of May.
Iceland Gull: A first-summer bird was seen alone soaring overhead near the Lighthouse on 18 Apr.
Caspian Tern: A group of 120 roosting on the north side of Gull Is. on 19 Apr was a large number for one spot.
Snowy Owl: Presumably the same late bird as last week was seen again perched on a tree top on High Bluff Is. on 19 Apr.
Warbling Vireo: A very early bird was located on 18 Apr.
Black-capped Chickadee: While typically thought of as a permanent resident, some birds do migrate as demonstrated by the 110 seen moving west from the lighthouse in three big flocks on 18 Apr.
Fox Sparrow: One singing on 20 Apr was the only report this week.
Red Crossbill: The crossbill show keeps on rolling with 8 birds seen on 18 Apr near the junction of Paxton Rd. and Atkins Lane.
White-winged Crossbill: Similarly 2 birds were seen in the same area as the Red Crossbills on 18 Apr. As of yet none of the crossbills are showing any obvious signs of breeding (display flights, persistent singing, etc.) but that may change.
House Sparrow: After being absent all winter, House Sparrows have re-occupied Bayshore Rd in small numbers.
Please Note: Access to Gull and High Bluff Island is closed to visitation between 10 March and 10 September to protect the thousands of colonial birds that nest on the islands.
Directions: Presqu’ile Provincial Park is located south of Brighton on the north shore of Lake Ontario. It is well signed from either Hwy. 401 or Cty. Rd. 2.