There has been some recent movement in the bird world at Presqu'ile Provincial Park and at least one newly arrived fall migrant. Otherwise, breeding birds continue to dominate.
A GADWALL with three young appeared on July 6. Some diving ducks in Popham Bay are of interest: a male GREATER SCAUP this morning; two flocks of LONG-TAILED DUCKS totalling 23 birds on July 6; five COMMON MERGANSERS on July 6. A young PIED-BILLED GREBE was in the marsh on July 3. Up to six GREAT EGRETS can be seen from the mainland, though ten nests are known to be on High Bluff Island. No fall shorebirds have yet arrived though a LESSER YELLOWLEGS at the nearby constructed wetland yesterday suggests that they might be imminent at Presqu'ile. For the second consecutive week, an AMERICAN WOODCOCK was seen with young in tow, and a single adult was also found. A very early BONAPARTE'S GULL in full breeding plumage was on the beach yesterday. One or two GREAT BLACK-BACKED GULLS were seen on three different days. The COMMON TERN colony on Gull Island is said to be doing well since being protected from predation from the ever-present BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERONS.
BLACK-BILLED CUCKOOS were at two different locations. A bird flying over the marsh on July 5 was identified as a SHORT-EARED OWL though there are no previous July records for the Park. A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was anonymously reported on July 3. After uncharacteristically few BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER sightings this spring and summer, one was near the lighthouse yesterday and today. A ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK was feeding young there today. Extensive efforts over the past couple of years to create a natural meadow free of invasive plants in the calf pasture appear to be paying off, as a highly agitated male BOBOLINK was found there on Monday. A family of ORCHARD ORIOLES was also there on that day. After a hiatus of six days, a single PINE SISKIN returned today to the feeders at 186 Bayshore Road.
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 from March 10 onward 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@TRENTU.CA.