Monday 25 September 2017

Fork-tailed Flycatcher in Toronto?!?!

Yesterday, on my way home from the Ontario Nature Youth Summit (more about that later), I stopped into Tommy Thompson Park to look for the reported Fork-tailed Flycatcher. I had first heard about the bird when I decided to check ONTBIRDS between workshops at the summit, and imagine my surprise when I saw that such a rare bird had been spotted in a location that was one my way home (with a minor detour).

For those who don't know, the Fork-tailed Flycatcher is a VERY rare bird to North America and the ABA area. Their normal range is from central Mexico to South America, so one showing up in Ontario, or really anywhere in Canada or the United States, is quite something!

Normal Range of the Fork-tailed Flycatcher
Source: Cornel Lab of Ornithology 

I arrived at Tommy Thompson Park about an hour before Sunset.

I didn't have a bike, so I began the 15 minute jog to the flycatcher was quite the warm evening so it wasn't too enjoyable!

I had a little bit of difficultly finding the right spot, but after calling my friend Owen, who had seen it earlier, I was able to sort it out, and before long we spotted the Fork-tailed high in a dead tree.

I had only my 250mm lens with me, so photos are not the best quality, but they turned out better than I thought they would!

It was seen sallying out for insects many times.

For some reason, the photos above make it look the sky was all grey and depressing. That was not the case, and there were many colours as the sunset.

Other than the flycatcher, there were also some Black-crowned Night-Herons, Trumpeter Swans, Caspian Terns, and a Sora.

Black-crowned Night-Herons

Trumpeter Swans

It was a successful day, and I thank Mom for going out of her way to let me see the bird.

More on the youth summit soon...there are many exciting things coming!


  1. Congratulations, Quinten...quite the find! Glad that you were able to catch up with it! 😊
    Looking forward to reading your post on the Youth Summit!

  2. I'm glad you were able to see the Fork-tailed Flycatcher, Quinten!

  3. What a great bird to add to your life list! That would sure be exciting to see.

    1. It sure was...this is one of the only rarities that has stuck around long enough for me to see!

  4. Well done! I tried posting comment from Algonquin Tuesday morning, but for some reason did not work. Too hot in Algonquin Park!

  5. Thanks Blake! It's supposed to cool down this weekend. I guess I will see what the park holds when I get there tomorrow.