May 272013
 
Polyphemus (Sabine Overink)

Polyphemus (Sabine Overink)

This evening, a Polyphemus moth appeared on our livingroom window. We live on County Road 6, Lakefield. I was able to get a picture of it.

Observer: Sabine Overink
(Note: This is one of the giant silkworm moths. It is native to Ontario but seldomly seen.  The top side of the body is even more impressive with two big, transparent eyespots surrounded by concentric yellow and blue rings. Numbers of all the giant silkworm moths seem to be declining – D.M.)
May 272013
 
Peregrine Falcon (Karl Egressy)

Peregrine Falcon (Karl Egressy)

Source: eBirds

A Peregrine Falcon was seen at 7:30 this morning on Water Street.
“It flew by… a really big stocky falcon with pointed wings…banked, reversed direction and landed on the George Street United Church spire at McDonnel and Water St… we got out our binos and the bright yellow legs and big dark, strongly contrasting face mask were obvious. No doubt.”

– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.3133836,-78.3194076&ll=44.3133836,-78.3194076
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S14255761

Observer: Iain Rayner

 

May 272013
 
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Karl Egressy)

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Karl Egressy)

This morning, while walking my dogs at the Harold Town Conservation Area (Old Norwood Road, east of Peterborough), the highlights were: Purple Finch carrying food possibly (nesting?), Alder Flycatcher calling, Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher heard and photographed, 4 Bobolinks and 9 Field Sparrows.

Observer: Luke Berg

May 272013
 

The Peterborough Field Naturalists were well represented in this year’s Carden Challenge, a birding and biodiversity competition in the Carden Alvar, northwest of Lindsay.  It is also a major fund-raiser for the Couchiching Conservancy, a land trust.  Over $22,000 was raided this year.

PFN member Kathy Parker was part of the team known as the Carden Catbirds.  Other team members consisted of Susan Blayney of Fenelon Falls, Alex Mills of Barrie and Chris Evans of Orillia.  They participated in the Carden Alvar Biodiversity Challenge.  They had to identify species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies within a 24 hour period.  All identifications had to be confirmed by two members of the team.  Bonus points were awarded if the species are recognized as species at risk by either the Federal or Provincial Governments.

The Carden Catbirds earned 182 points to capture the new Biodiversity Challenge Award, which was donated by Martin and Kathy Parker.  There were a total of four teams in the Biodiversity Challenge, with the 2nd place team earning 178 points, and the other two teams obtaining 152 and 172 points.

PFN members Sean Smith, Matthew Toby and Martin Parker along with Dan Bone of the Kawartha Field Naturalists comprised a team called ‘The Wylie Road Runners’.  They came in second in the Carden Cup which is for competitive teams.  The winning team ‘The Lagerheads’ observed 133 species of birds and were awarded the ‘Carden Cup’.  The ‘Wylie Road Runners’ observed 122 species with the other two competitive teams observing 117 and 103 species.

The Carden Challenge commenced at 6 p.m. on Friday May 24 and lasted until 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 25.  All observations had to occur within in an area contained within a circle of radius 24 kilometers centered on the Carden Alvar, just north of Kirkfield.  Some teams birded all night while other had a few hours’ sleep.  The event ended with a catered supper and awards presentation.

For additional information contact Martin Parker – 705 – 745 – 4750

May 272013
 
Source: Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources – 2010
   The changes in global climate that have been projected for this century have major implications for the composition, structure, and function of ecosystems in Ontario. In this report, we present four approaches that summarize projected changes in climate across Ontario’s ecosystems at two scales: for ecoregions and for selected natural heritage areas.
     First, the current climatic regime or “climate envelope” for each ecoregion is summarized and mapped for three future time periods (2011-2040, 2041-2070, 2071-2100); this shows where current ecoregion climatic conditions are projected to move as the century progresses. Second, climate summaries are provided for each ecoregion for the current and three future time periods to show how climate is projected to change within the currently defined ecoregion boundaries. Similarly, current and future climate summaries are provided for 29 selected natural heritage areas. Finally, to introduce the concept of climate-related movement of flora and fauna, current and future climate envelopes are generated for 12 Ontario tree species that have a range of climate and site type preferences. The extent to which these species’ climate habitats are represented across Ontario’s network of natural heritage areas is shown for current and future climate. Our findings suggest that changes are in store for Ontario, with ecoregion climate envelopes projected to shift northward, becoming increasingly smaller and more scattered, and in some cases even disappearing, as the century progresses. These changes are driven by a northward shift in temperature combined with relatively stable precipitation patterns. Clearly Ontario’s natural heritage areas will also be affected by these changes. For example, the annual mean temperature in Polar Bear ProvincialPark is projected to increase from-4.5C to nearly +2C and the number of growing season degree days will more than double by the end of this century; this climatic shift would in principle make the park’s climate suitable for the growth of sugar maple. This type of assessment is an important first step in projecting the effects of future climate on Ontario’s ecoregions and natural heritage areas, and helps establish a basisfor discussing and developing management strategies and policies to ensure the ecoregion framework remains relevant to land use planning in a rapidly changing climate. Together, these analyses provide novel perspectives on some of the challenges that resource managers are likely to face during the 21st century.