Monday 30 April 2018

Rondeau Roundup

Yesterday I went to Rondeau with a group from Nature London. Despite it being a "slow" day, I don't think anybody was disappointed!

We started the day with a quick drive down Lakeshore Road, looking for the White-winged Dove, a bird that has somehow evaded me for the past four years. No luck!

We met up with the group, and then went and explored Tulip Tree Trail. Some highlights included Common Loon (flyover), Hermit Thrush, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Tufted Titmouse and Winter Wren.

Hermit Thrush

After about an hour on the trail, I took my group on a little walk down Lakeshore Road. There were plenty of Brown Thrashers.

I stopped to talk to the owner of the "pink house", who said the White-winged Dove had just taken off, but was likely at the "yellow house", a little bit down the road. I lost a lot of my group, as they didn't want to walk down the road all that way, but I kept treking (sprinting)...I had to see that bird!

Eventually I got to the "yellow house" and....nothing. Darn. But just as I was about to turn around I spotted a dove fly up from the ground behind the house. A dove with a rounded tail and white on the tip of the tail. Could it be? It all happened so fast, but it definitely warranted a closer look. It wasn't on the stovepipe, and it wasn't on the roof, so where did it go?


Ahhh!!! It was the White-winged Dove!!! I quickly found it in a tree not too far from the house, where it offered great views. After a little while it flew north, where I refound it high in a tree.

After the dove excitement, the group went to South Point Trail (they tried and failed at seeing the White-winged...good thing I went when I did!). Plenty of small woodland birds were around.

Hermit Thrush

White-throated Sparrow

House Wren

Eastern Towhee

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Most of the group turned around where the path was really flooded, but three of us kept going, seeing what we could find. There were a few sparrows near the beacon.

Field Sparrow

We managed to find our first (!) warblers of the trip...a distant singing Yellow-rumped and at least three Pine Warblers.

Pine Warbler

Not too much of interest was out near the washout except for a Horned Grebe and an Eastern Bluebird.

After South Point, we went up to the campground to check out a Snowy Owl which my friend had texted about. It didn't take too long to find it up in a tree. Kind of a bizarre place for it!

Maintenance was fairly quiet, but we did see a Carolina Wren and my first Spring Azure of the year.

Carolina Wren

Spring Azure

Marsh Trail was the last stop for the group. Not much of note except for a Yellow-rumped Warbler.

Blake notified me of a Wilson's Phalarope over at the Blenheim Sewage Lagoons, so I made a stop there after Rondeau.

It didn't take long to find her in the sprinkler cell. Female phalaropes are more brightly coloured than the males, and this female was no exception. Quite the bird!

There were some other shorebirds around, such as both Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser Yellowlegs

I found a group of Pectoral Sandpipers and a Wilson's Snipe in a wet spot to the north of the sprinkler cell.

Pectoral Sandpiper

A few other birds around the lagoons as well, including Purple Martins, Savannah Sparrows, Eastern Meadowlarks, gulls, ducks, and blackbirds.

Bonaparte's and Ring-billed Gulls

Wood Ducks

Eastern Meadowlarks

All in all a super great day in the Rondeau area!

On a side note, I saw this stunner in London today. Not often we get a Prothonotary Warbler up this way! This is day three for this bird...I wonder how long he'll stay.


  1. A nice variety of birds, Quinten. I'm glad you found the White-Winged got a nice picture!

  2. No doubt you slept well Sunday night after checking off the White-winged Dove!