Monday 27 April 2020

Homebound Northbound

Migrants have been slow to trickle through, but when they are moving, we don't have to go far to see them!

I have much enjoyed spending time around home looking for birds. On clear mornings, I like to sit in my backyard and count birds as they fly over. The highlight is always Common Loons. In the past week I have counted a total of over 180 loons migrating over my house, 124 in one day!

All the loons have been northbound, except one, which was in basic (non-breeding) plumage. That one was heading south. A bit odd if I do say so myself!

Loon going the wrong way
With the loons, there are occasionally small flocks of Double-crested Cormorants that go by.

I've even mananged to get a couple yard birds out of it! The most surprising was probably Eastern Meadowlark (I live in a subdivsion), which was also a new neighbourhood bird.  I also had a couple American Wigeons this evening.

Broad-winged Hawks are moving through in small numbers. I have had a few over my yard.

As well as in one of the local woodlots.

After the morning watches are over, I try to go on a walk around the neighbourhood. A few days ago an American Bittern was found at a wetland near me. This is the second bittern I have seen there, the first being one I found in 2018. American Bitterns are surprisingly rare in the county! I saw it again today.

The Virginia Rail I found last weekend now has a friend. The habitat isn't great, but is sufficent, so one has to wonder just how long they'll stick around. Other wetland birds are moving in, such as this Green Heron.

Odds and ends include my first of year Northern Rough-winged, Barn and Bank Swallows, as well as my first Fox Sparrow of the year. Funny enough I has just been thinking about Fox Sparrows when this one popped up!

Word is on the street that tomorrow is looking good for birds...we shall see.


  1. Quinten, you have an amazing backyard seeing lots of birds!

    1. Amazing what can be seen once you start looking!