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Birding Report

Most of the interesting bird sightings at Presqu'ile Provincial Park in the past week consist of birds that are dispersing from their breeding territories and appearing in places where they have been absent for weeks.

Three diving ducks not normally present in summer were in Popham Bay on June 27: a male GREATER SCAUP, a LONG-TAILED DUCK on Owen Point, and a female COMMON GOLDENEYE.  A male and female RED-BREASTED MERGANSER were on the beach on July 1 and two female COMMON MERGANSERS on July 2.

GREAT EGRETS and BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERONS are appearing more frequently away from their nests on the offshore islands.  MERLINS were seen on two consecutive days, and another small raptor, perhaps a SHARP-SHINNED HAWK, was seen carrying a male BALTIMORE ORIOLE.  A COMMON MOORHEN has emerged from the reeds in the marsh to feed in the open on two occasions.

The most interesting shorebird report concerns the banded RED KNOTS that landed briefly on the beach on May 28.  It has been learned that some of them were tagged in the United States, but the more interesting returns were as follows: two birds banded in Tierra del Fuego, Chile in February, 2003 and January, 2007; one bird banded in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina in November, 2006 that was subsequently seen many times at San Antonio Oeste (not sure where that is) from February to April 21, 2009, scarcely a month before appearing at Presqu'ile.
Someone indicated on the bird sightings board that a STILT SANDPIPER had been seen on June 30.  Since that would represent a record early fall migration date, albeit by only two days, more information about that observation should be submitted, either to the Park directly or through me.  Others of that species do occur regularly in July.

A BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO was calling near 42 Bayshore Road on June 27.  A RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER at 83 Bayshore Road lends support to the belief that the species breeds in the Park.  Both MOURNING WARBLER and CANADA WARBLER were found on June 28, as was a CLAY-COLORED SPARROW.  The report of a PALM WARBLER, also indicated anonymously on the bird sightings board, would be the first summer record of that species at Presqu'ile if confirmed.  ORCHARD ORIOLES in various plumages are seen on most days.  Two PINE SISKINS were at 186 Bayshore Road on June 27, and one was seen there on each of the next two days.

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 restricted at this time of year to prevent disturbance to the colonial nesting birds there.

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