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Birding Report

Presqu’ile Bird Report July 26th to Aug 1st 2019

HIGHLIGHTS

BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO

LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL

Southbound shorebird migration has slowed down a bit this week with 8 species reported this week. Although the beach is slowly drying up each week exposing more sandbars for resting and refuelling shorebirds all the lookouts and what’s left of Owen Pt remain flooded. For those who bird Presqu’ile to give you an idea of water levels Sebastopol Island is completely under water!

Only 5 species of ducks were seen this week with the best being a couple of HOODED MERGANSERS in the pond behind beach 3.

A BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO has been heard calling on Paxton Rd the last couple of days between the Lighthouse and the Calf Pasture.

SEMIPALMATED PLOVERS 3, KILLDEER 3, LEAST SANDPIPER 4, SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER with a high count of 15 birds on July 28th. WILSON’S SNIPE 1, SPOTTED SANDPIPER 3, GREATER YELLOWLEGS 3 and a high count today of 17 LESSER YELLOWLEGS of which consisted of at least 11 juveniles. The majority of these shorebirds were seen from beach 3.

There were a total of 4 gulls and the usual 2 terns on the beach this week.  An adult BONAPARTE’S was seen on Beach 2 and 2 immature birds flying by the Lighthouse today. The most surprising gull report of the week was of a juvenile LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL seen by a couple of birders on Beach 2.

A total of 5 Herons and Bitterns were reported this week. An AMERICAN BITTERN on Beach 3 and a LEAST BITTERN on the east side of the causeway just outside Park. GREAT BLUE HERONS have been seen feeding mostly with the shorebirds on beach 3. GREAT EGRETS and BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERONS can be seen most days coming and going from High Bluff Island.

TURKEY VULTURES, OSPREY with young on Salt Pt, SHARP-SHINNED HAWK seen soaring above shorebirds at Beach 3 today. BARRED OWL continues to be reported in the Newcastle Woods.

RED-HEADED AND RED-BELLIED with young can still be seen although much less often at residential feeders. The juvenile birds are now feeding themselves! A MERLIN was reported from the Calf Pasture on July 28th. The bottom parking lot at the Calf Pasture is still mostly flooded.

Many of the breeding passerines have family groups moving around the Park but no noticeable migration of birds either in or out of the Park. A BLUE-GRAY GNATCATHER at the Calf Pasture and one of the somewhat rare breeding sparrows a WHITE-THROATED SPARROW was heard singing in the Fingers today.

For those visiting the Constructed Wetland and the Brighton Sewage Lagoon water levels are high and visibility poor for shorebird viewing. VIRGINIA RAILS, COMMON GALLINULES and MARSH WRENS can be heard while walking around Constructed Wetland.

THANK YOU to all the observers who have forward me or Ebirded their list of bird sightings this week!

Directions: Presqu’ile Provincial Park is located on the north shore of Lake Ontario, just south of the town of Brighton.  It can be reached from either Hwy. 401, or Cty. Rd. 2 and is well signed.  A Park map can be found in the information tabloid available at the Park gate.  Presqu’ile’s two offshore islands – Gull and High Bluff – support a large multi-species colonial bird nesting area and access is not permitted during the breeding season (10 March-10 September).