Monday 12 September 2016

Hawk Cliff and Port Stanley

Yesterday was Nature London's annual field trip to Hawk Cliff and area. I went last year, and it was awesome. Although this year things were a little slow, it was still quite enjoyable.

The day started at Tim Horton's, where all good nature outings begin :) On the way to Hawk Cliff, we found an Eastern Bluebird plus a Broad-winged Hawk.

I didn't take all that many photos because most birds were just too far away (or fast in the case of warblers.) Sharpies (Sharp-shinned Hawks) were the most numerous, I counted around 30 birds throughout.

The Monarch tagging demonstration really piqued my interest. I'm thinking to order a tagging kit so I can get involved next season. You can sort of see the small 9mm wide tag on this male.

There were quite a lot of raptors (9) to be banded during the banding demonstration. Sharpies, kestrels, a Northern Harrier, a Merlin, and a Red-tailed Hawk were banded.

I found a Common Nighthawk which a few members of the groups managed to see. I've been seeing them for the last few weeks, but I finally managed to get a picture!

There were a few passerines observed including Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (immature), Canada Warbler, American Goldfinch, Black-and-White Warbler, Blue Jay, Cedar Waxwing, and American Redstart.

After Hawk Cliff, we went to Port Stanley for lunch (Mackie's). A few of us went to the beach to see what we could find, and weren't disappointed. Although we didn't re-find the Sanderlings that I had seen fly by before we ate (I was the only one to see them), we did find a nice variety of gulls. Ring-billed was the most common, but Bonaparte's and Herring gull could be found with them. I didn't realize this at the time, but there were a couple Lesser Black-backed Gulls with them as well. A Common Tern was seen as well.

The last stop was Port Stanley Sewage Lagoons. I immediately found three Hooded Mergansers.

Greater Yellowlegs was the only shorebird species found, Other ducks include Green-winged Teals, Ruddy Ducks, Wood Ducks, and Mallards. Merlin and Kestrels were numerous at the back of the cells.

Black Saddlebags were quite common today.

There was a family of Pied-billed Grebes with 8 young and 2 (obviously) adults.

It was a great day, with very few photographs taken (sorry). I'll be in Algonquin next weekend, so I'm looking forward to that.

On a side note, I won second in my division at the Western Fair photo contest!

2nd Place!


  1. Sounds like you had a great outing! Congratulations on placing second in the photo contest...that's awesome! :)

  2. Good post. I'm hoping to visit hawk cliff sometime this fall.

    Monarch tagging is also a lot of fun. I tagged several last year but didn't get around to it this season.

    Have fun in Algonquin. Should be great with the fall colours.

  3. That is one stunning Mallard photo. Congrats.