Jul 292018
 

Another fox in city dining on Gray Squirrels

There was a large number of squirrels in our neighbourhood. Then came a large, gray-coloured fox, easily the size of my fifty pound Springer Spaniel. I’d often see it at first light, and thrice seen carrying a black-phase Gray Squirrel. The squirrel population has dropped dramatically. As of July 23, I have not seen the fox for about three weeks. I presume he has moved on to another neighbourhood where the roof rabbit harvest is more promising. When I first saw the fox, I was not sure what I was looking at.  I thought perhaps it was a coyote/fox hybrid, but that probably does not happen.  Larry Love, Norwood Terrace, Peterborough

P.S. By the way, there is lots of Black Bear activity in Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park.  Last Thursday while stopping for dinner on Campsite 301 (Wolf Lake) I  saw a handwritten “Bear Warning” note, concerning a juvenile nuisance bear.  The sign was tacked to a tree at the site.   During our two hour stay, there were a number of gawkers who came into the bay to see if there was a bear around.  One kayaker told me about an MNR culvert trap set on a cottager’s property, not far from Site 301.   Two years ago, I put a small bear off of an adjacent island.  He had been gorging on blueberries.  The bears are everywhere in KHPP, but this boldness is new.

Red-headed Woodpecker at Gannons Narrow (July 21)  This is the first year we have ever seen one in the area. He has been around since early June and just in the last week or so has found our black oil sunflower seed feeders. He is a feisty fellow who will scare away the other birds and not give way to blackbirds or jays who try to get him to move. Kingsley Hubbs, Gannons Narrows, Selwyn Township

Red-headed Woodpecker – July 2018 – Kingsley Hubbs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black-billed Cuckoo near Warsaw:  At around 8 pm this evening (July 20), I heard (twice) the call of a Black-billed Cuckoo in our bush near the Indian River. I didn’t see it, but its call was unmistakable. It moved to 2 different locations within the bush. We’ve been here 19 years and haven’t heard a cuckoo every year.   Jane Bremner

Black-billed Cuckoo – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black-crowned Night-Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax) (1) from eBird
– Reported Jul 19, 2018 15:13 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Millennium Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Flew out from willow tree on island, landing on dead tree near sand bar. Presumably same individual reported here a few weeks back. ”

Black-crowned Night-Heron – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eastern Screech-Owl (Megascops asio) (4)  from eBird
– Reported Jul 17, 2018 20:50 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Beavermead Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “1 adult, 2 young, and presumably a 3rd young calling. Adult giving steady hoot calls similar to NSOW, but mixed with clicking and whinnies. In ecology park hopping around. Seen previous night as well but only as silhouettes. ”

Eastern Screech owl – red phase – 9th Line of Selwyn Twsp – March 11, 2017 – Kathy McCue

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our neighbor has a family of Mallards visiting regularly. What is remarkable, however, is that all  of the ducklings have, so far at least, survived. They have survived the Great Blue Heron that has totally cleaned out the Eastern Chipmunk population. Sad. Yeah, I know, nature. But, the maddening part, of course, is that the Great Blue is really, really lazy. He has decided to stop fishing, and go chipmunking!  Gord Young, Armour Road  

Mother Mallard and eight ducklings – Dianne Tyler

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have had 3 Pileated Woodpeckers in our yard at the same time this month. However, I couldn’t get all three in the picture below. We know there are a male and a female juvenile, but we’re not sure about how many adults/parents. The Osprey nests around here all seem to only have one baby this year but its really hard to tell. We  watch the nest behind us in the ball diamond, the nest on the Bridgenorth-Selwyn Road, and the one at the corner of Yankee Line and Robinson Road across from the trailer park.  Jennie and Peter Gulliver, Communication Road, Bridgenorth

Two or the three Pileated Woodpeckers in our yard – July 16, 2018 – Jennie Gulliver

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On July 12, we were camping on Secret Lake in Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park and saw a pair of Sandhill Cranes and 2 half-grown chicks foraging along a marshy shore. Secret Lake is located north of Long Lake and Loucks Lake. It is reached by a short portage from Loucks Lake. Gary Moloney

Sandhill Crane with chick – Barb Evett – Buckhorn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It seems that my leaving wide swaths of my orchard uncut to establish zones of biodiversity, which  include apple trees, nesting boxes as well as many milkweeds, has paid off. This morning, July 9, I noticed quite a few Monarchs fluttering about and visiting multiple milkweed plants that are happily blooming – having escaped the blades of my bush hog! Michael Gillespie, Keene

Monarch caterpillar on milkweed  – Drew Monkman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have lived outside of Millbrook for 20 years & have noticed a large decline in birds and bees. I’ve also seen very few fireflies, whereas they were abundant a few years back.  Ludvik Kouril (July 9)

Photinus pyralis – a common firefly – Art Farmer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have a very large patch of Himalayan Balsam in my backyard. I’ve been fighting this invasive species for years, and I was just about to start pulling these plants out when, on July 7, I saw a Monarch laying eggs on them. Wendy Hicks, Peterborough

 N.B. Don Davis, a Monarch expert, told me that this is very unusual. D.M.

Himalayan Balsam, an invasive species in Ontario – Wikimedia

 

 

Apr 232018
 

Don Munro of Campbellford and Mike Faught of Peterborough shared the following pictures taken this month.

Common Loon with catfish – April 2018 – Don Munro

Wood Duck flying – April 2018 – Don Munro

Great Blue Heron flying – April 2018 – Don Munro

Pileated Woodpecker – April 2018 – Don Munro

Carolina Wren – April 2018 – Don Munro

Horned Grebe in waves – April 2018 – Don Munro

Double-crested Cormorants – April 2018 – Don Munro

Long-tailed Duck in breeding plumage – April 2018 – Don Munro

Lesser Yellowlegs – April 2018 – Don Munro

Ospreys at nest – April 2018 – Mike Faught

Great Blue Heron – Mike Faught

Wood Duck in flight – April 2018 – Mike Faught

 

Jul 062017
 

I have been watching two dark brown juvenile Bald Eagles for three mornings now, sitting on and beside a high nest  in a white pine in Wolf Island Provincial Park on Lower Buckhorn Lake.  They glared at me for about 15 minutes but never left. One of them was in the nest, then sat on the branch with the other one for 10 minutes, then back into the nest, which was getting nice morning sunlight around 9 am. I was in a canoe.

The nest has been there for two or three years. I’ve dropped a Google maps pin in the nest location, and hope it shows you the right spot (big white pine). I can watch the nest from the lake side, and from deep in the bay on the north side, but lakeside is better.

There is now a heronry with three Great Blue Heron nests on Three Islands (west of the eagles) where Ospreys used to nest.
Janet Duval, Deer Bay Reach Road

Juvenile Bald Eagle – Drew Monkman

 

May 032017
 

We were at the Ecology Park on the morning of April 23 and saw this male Yellow-rumped Warbler.  Hallelujah for the return of spring!  Helen and Larry Keller, Mark Street

Yellow-rumped Warbler – Ecology Park – April 23, 2017 – Helen & Larry Keller

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have had a little Chipping Sparrow flying up against our windows over the last 3 days. It sits on the window sills and sliding door frames looking in and sometimes flies at the windows. We would love to know what might be causing this weird behaviour. We’ve also had a male Hairy Woodpecker coming to our feeder. Wendy Marrs, Peterborough

Chipping Sparrow at window – Wendy Marrs

Hairy Woodpecker – Wendy Marrs

 Note: The bird see its reflection in the window, assumes it’s another male in its territoy, and flies up against the window to drive the intruder (its reflection) away. Robins and cardinals often do the same thing. D.M

 

 

 

On April 14th we were sitting on our dock and our neighbour saw a big bird flying to a tree.  We got our spotting scope out and found that there were two Great Blue Herons in a nest in a clump of five pine trees. Later, we discovered that there are actually three nests! Even though we see lots of herons, it is the first time we actually found a nest.  Rosemary and Claudio Rosada, Lower Buckhorn Lake

Great Blue Heron (Paul Anderson)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was so excited to see a Ruby-crowned Kinglet in the brushy trees near our house this morning (April 13) -just classic and unmistakable. It had a white eye ring and white wing bars, and he even showed a bit of red on the crown just to be sure!  Jane Bremner, Warsaw

The Ruby-crowned Kinglet has a prominent eye ring. (Karl Egressy)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Got some great pictures of Ring-necked Ducks and Trumpeter Swans around Lakefield on April 11. Jeff Keller

Ring-necked Ducks – April 11, 2017 – Jeff Keller

Trumpeter Swans – April 11, 2017 – Jeff Keller

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mid-April is my favourite time to be on the island. Silence and not a light to be seen. Today the River Otters were out in force. Running, sliding and feasting on fish.The highlight was a flyby of three swans (Trumpeters?) that were in the duckpond.  Life is good!  Rob Welsh, Stony Lake

River otter eating a fish at Gannon’s Narrows, Buckhorn Lake (by Kinsley Hubbs)

 

 

Stony Lake – April 10, 2017 – Rob Welsh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On April 4, there were 2 Osprey on the nesting platform in Young’s Point. Most of Stony Lake is still frozen but there were pair of absolutely resplendent loons dancing and calling.  Rob Welsh, Stony Lake

Common Loon (Karl Egressy)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apr 022017
 

April 2 – I heard a Wilson’s Snipe quietly calling in the marshy area on the Parkway trail, east of Chemong, directly underneath the WalMart parking lot. Also, 3 Northern Leopard Frogs hopping along the new not-yet-opened road that skirts east of the airport as well as 3 Killdeer in the adjacent fields.   Marilyn Freeman

Wilson’s Snipe – Greg Piasetzki

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 2 – Cottonwood Drive this morning, we heard a couple of Eastern Phoebes calling. It must be spring! Rob Moos

Eastern Phoebe (David Frank)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 30 – Two Great Blue Herons flying over the Cavan Bog and another north of Whitby.  John Fautley

March 30 – I saw my first Great Blue Heron today. It was flying north over the Otonabee River near Lakefield. Annamarie Beckel

Great Blue Heron – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About 64 third year Trent ecology students surveyed the Otonabee River from Lakefield to south of Lock 19, on March 24th.  From 9:00 am to 10:30 am, they did 8 stations north of Trent and from 1 pm to 3 pm, 8 stations south of Trent. Susan Chow

Here are the results: Bufflehead 95, Canada Geese 141, Common Goldeneye 6, Common Merganser 8, Gadwall 1, Greater Scaup 1, Hooded Merganser 86, Lesser Scaup 7, Long-tailed Duck 5, Mallard 369, Wood Duck 3

Long-tailed-Duck – Mar.22 2014 – Little Lake – – DJ McPhail

 

Male Gadwall (photo from Wikimedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On March 17 and 18, there were 50 to 60 Bohemian Waxwings flying back and forth between the conifers along the Otonabee River and two Siberian crab apple trees. The birds were just north of the Ninth Line.

Susan Chow

Bohemian Waxwing – Cow Island – Jan. 24, 2015 – via Sylvia Cashmore