Apr 202018
 
Osprey: I saw this Osprey on its nest today (April 20) on County Rd 2, west of Hastings. Impressive pad!   Wendy Marrs

Osprey – Wendy Marrs – April 20, 2018

Snowy Owl: This beautiful Snowy Owl was in our backyard this morning (April 20) around 8 am. What a thing of beauty! This is my first time ever seeing an owl in the wild and to see this one, I feel so lucky. We live just outside of Bobcaygeon, in Victoria Place.  Debbie Gardiner, Port Colony Road, Bobcaygeon 

Snowy Owl – April 20, 2018 – Bobcaygeon – Debbie Gardiner

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cackling Goose (Branta hutchinsii) (1)
– Reported Apr 19, 2018 16:40 by Alain Parada Isada
– Trent Rowing Club, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Media: 1 Photo
– Comments: “Cackling Goose by Otonabee river along with a Canada Goose. Individual had an aluminum band in left leg. Photo taken about 10 m away.”

Cackling Goose (foreground) – Brendan Boyd

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red-necked Grebe (Podiceps grisegena) (1)
– Reported Apr 19, 2018 09:25 by Ben Taylor
– Peterborough–Beavermead Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Long red neck, long bill, and tri-angular head. Seen in the cove near Parks Canada building.”

Red-necked Grebe in breeding plumage – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bonaparte’s Gull (Chroicocephalus philadelphia) (1)
– Reported Apr 18, 2018 10:54 by C Douglas
– Lakefield–Sewage Lagoons, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Small gull black spot behind eye. Black edge on wings and tail”

Bonaparte’s Gull – breeding plumage – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Apr 17, 2018 09:08 by Iain Rayner
– Ptbo – Tara Rd N of Edenderry, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Sitting on fence post. Almost completely white on back but seen at speed. Did not stop”

 

Apr 042018
 

Snowy Owl – It was snowing on Upper Buckhorn on April 6 and guess what shows up at my neighbor’s dock? Looks like a male.  Derry Fairweather

Snowy Owl – April 6, 2018- Upper Buckhorn Lake – Derry Fairweather

Snowy Owl – April 6, 2018- Upper Buckhorn Lake – Derry Fairweather

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glaucous Gull (Larus hyperboreus) (1)
– Reported Apr 05, 2018 16:07 by Toby Rowland
– Peterborough–Millennium Park, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.3028834,-78.31688&ll=44.3028834,-78.31688
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S44277679
– Comments: “All white Wingtips significantly larger than surrounding ring billed gulls. Scene from the train bridge amongst the Ring billed gulls by the islands”

Glaucous Gull – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sandhill Cranes: Our 2 Sandhill Cranes have returned to Rockcroft, north of Buckhorn. Observed in my folks backyard this morning, April 3, at 10:30 am. Marie Windover

Sandhill Cranes – Rene Gareau

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) (Setophaga coronata coronata) (1)
– Reported Apr 06, 2018 07:16 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Beavermead Park, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.2938973,-78.3027537&ll=44.2938973,-78.3027537
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S44291787
– Comments: “Well seen. Warbler with white throat and yellow rump. Calling consistently. Feeding alongside water just south of Beavermead beach. ”

Yellow-rumped Warbler (male) – Jeff Keller

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cackling Goose (Branta hutchinsii) (7)
– Reported Apr 02, 2018 10:51 by Iain Rayner
– Ptbo – Second Line Rd pond, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.1469173,-78.3458757&ll=44.1469173,-78.3458757
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S44200072
– Media: 1 Photo
– Comments: “Continuing. Pic shows 2 of the 7 birds”

Cackling Goose (foreground) – Brendan Boyd

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tundra Swan (Whistling) (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) (1)
– Reported Apr 02, 2018 18:10 by Matthew Tobey
– Chemong Lake – sw end, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.3362125,-78.4461336&ll=44.3362125,-78.4461336
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S44204127
– Comments: “Continuing.”

Tundra Swans – Apr. 6, 2014 – Luke Berg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Apr 02, 2018 09:45 by David McCorquodale
– CA-ON-341 Hiawatha Line (44.1784,-78.2037), Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.178402,-78.203746&ll=44.178402,-78.203746
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S44183725
– Comments: “Continuing. Out on ice.”

Snowy Owl (Jeff Keller)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sandhill Cranes:  I saw a pair of Sandhill Cranes on March 23 at about 6:30pm in Omemee. Gavin Hunter

Sandhill Cranes – Don Genge

 

Feb 062018
 

I heard a Great Horned owl at the edge of the cedar/ash/white pine forest by the Otonabee River near 9th line. On Feb 10- 5:45 am. Susan Chow

Great Horned Owl – Dec. 23, 2015 – Glen Grills

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barred Owl (Strix varia) (1)
– Reported Feb 09, 2018 18:30 by Basil Conlin
– Peterborough–Rotary Park & Walkway, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S42629795
– Comments: “heard vocalizing three times from the direction of Nichol’s Oval at the entrance to the park at Rogers St.”

Barred Owl – Wilco Overink – Nov. 29, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is an abundance of Snowy Owls in our area this year. Most any concession in the Lindsay area will yield a Snowy. Try Post Road (Hwy 7 north to Hwy 36) and Fieldside Road (Cheese Factory Road intersection).  The bird photographed here is the closest to home I have sighted. Feb 9 / 2018 at the Bypass & Bensford Bridge Rd ramp.  Carl Welbourn, Kawartha Camera Club

Snowy Owl – Feb. 9, 2018 – Carl Welbourn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barred Owl (Strix varia) (1)
– Reported Feb 09, 2018 12:30 by Basil Conlin
– Lady Eaton Drumlin, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S42625033
– Media: 1 Photo
– Comments: “sitting about 50m away from flock of feeding robins, perhaps waiting for one to let its guard down?”

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) (1)
– Reported Feb 09, 2018 08:32 by Donald A. Sutherland
– Peterborough–King St just W George St, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S42615388
– Comments: “perched on communication towers atop Charlotte Towers (245 Charlotte St)”

I took this picture of a Cooper’s Hawk on February 6 behind our unit. It was on a Rock Pigeon.  Don Finigan

Cooper’s Hawk – Don Finigan – Feb. 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today, Feb. 6, at about 2:00 pm, I had a Carolina Wren at my feeder eating suet. The bird feeder is high up – at the back of the
house. I live at 123 Creekwood Drive in Peterborough.

Sherry Hambly

Carolina Wren – Feb. 6 2018 – Creekwood Dr. PTBO – Sherry Hambly

Carolina Wren (Wikimedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barred Owl (Strix varia) (1)
– Reported Feb 04, 2018 20:00 by Brendan Boyd
– 711 Armour Rd, Peterborough CA-ON (44.3159,-78.3098), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “A yard bird I never expected. Sitting on the hydro line above the driveway.”

Barred Owl Feb. 8, 2015 – Television Road – Brenda Ibey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Northern Saw-whet Owl (Aegolius acadicus) (2)

– Reported Feb 04, 2018 16:11 by Matthew Tobey
– Peterborough–Harper Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Calling near park entrance at 1740.”

Northern Saw-Whet Owl – Kelly Simmonds – March 26, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) (4)
– Reported Feb 03, 2018 14:38 by Warren Dunlop
– Petroglyphs Provincial Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “2 individuals & one group of 2 – all flyovers calling – gip gip gip.”

Red Crossbill – male – Wikimedia

Jan 222018
 

On my way home from a friend’s this evening at dusk (Jan. 27 – 4:45pm) while driving through pouring rain on Co. Rd. 38 between the Dummer-Asphodel Road and Webster Road south of Warsaw, an immature Snowy Owl suddenly appeared flying along beside me at about hydro line height. It then turned and crossed the road ahead of me and came to land briefly on a utility pole, before taking flight gain and heading far out to the west until it finally disappeared from my view. This was my third of the winter and first of 2018. The one photo I snapped off doesn’t show much of anything good enough for posting. Hmm… three Snowies and still no good pictures. Will keep watching and hoping! Tim Dyson, Warsaw

Immature Snowy Owl (Karl Egressy)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bird chatter when filling feeders

I was filling my bird feeders this morning (Jan. 25), and I noted that once I had started there was a good deal of bird chatter.  Would they be communicating with each other to say “she’s filling the feeder, let’s eat”?  I’ve experienced this a few times now.  The chatter stops, lasting maybe 10 seconds or so.  Once I close my door, I noted that the birds wait, and once they feel I’m gone they go at the feeders. I have the usual birds – chickadees, finches, cardinals, etc.  Sue Ramey

NOTE: Please send me an email if you’ve noticed this phenomenon yourself. D.M. (dmonkman1@cogeco.ca)

Northern Cardinal – by Ruthanne-Sobiera

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator) (3)
– Reported Jan 24, 2018 12:45 by Scott McKinlay
– 120 Fradette Avenue, Peterborough, Ontario, CA (44.287, -78.311), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Continuing birds along this stretch of the Otonabee. 2 males 1 female.”

Eastern Screech-Owl (Megascops asio) (1)
– Reported Jan 24, 2018 16:40 by Basil Conlin
– Peterborough–Harper Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “giving tremolo call frequently for ten minutes near entrance to park”

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus) (2)
– Reported Jan 24, 2018 16:40 by Basil Conlin
– Peterborough–Harper Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “very vocal pair”

Great Horned Owl at dusk (Luke Berg)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Northern Saw-whet Owl (Aegolius acadicus) (2)
– Reported Jan 24, 2018 16:40 by Basil Conlin
– Peterborough–Harper Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “two individuals, one calling very loudly from cedars near Holy Cross, another calling loudly from cedars near trail head. Both birds could be heard hooting back and forth for 35 minutes beginning at 5pm”   LISTEN HERE

Saw-whet Owl banding – Wikimedia

Northern Saw-whet Owl – Kelly Simmonds – March 24, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On January 21, I came across an immature Red-tailed Hawk eating a Gray Squirrel on the side of Golfview Road, beside the Kawartha Golf and Country Club and right behind the Clonsilla Ave. fire station. It sure scared the jogger who happened by! The hawk wouldn’t give up his squirrel and flew off with it into the woods. Mark Scriver

Immature Red-tailed Hawk eating Gray Squirrel – Jan. 21, 2018 – Golfview Rd. – Mark Scriver

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have two Sandhill Cranes that I’ve seen twice and heard once in the past week. I have cranes here every spring, summer and fall, but am surprised that they’d be around at this time of the year.  Leo Condon, 947 Douro 4th Line 

Sandhill Cranes – Wendy Leszkowicz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) (1)
– Reported Jan 23, 2018 07:49 by Scott Gibson
– Downtown – Robinson Place roof, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “feeding on pigeon on corner of roof”

Peregrine perched on steel girder – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator) (1)
– Reported Jan 22, 2018 08:50 by Ben Taylor
– Peterborough–Beavermead Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42155983
– Comments: “Continuing bird,”

Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator) (2)
– Reported Jan 21, 2018 14:12 by Chris Risley
– Peterborough–Little Lake Cemetery, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42151124
– Comments: “Continuing birds: male and female”

Female Red-breasted Merganser (Karl Egressy)

Red-breasted Merganser on Otonabee River -Tom Northey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) (1)
– Reported Jan 21, 2018 14:20 by Chris Risley
– Peterborough–Otonabee River (Lock 19), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42151121
– Comments: “Continuing bird. Only male seen, among mallards just below lock on west side of river”

Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus) (2)
– Reported Jan 21, 2018 16:15 by René Gareau
– Peterborough–Harper Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Heard an owl calling, and 20 min. later located two great horned owls approx. 50 ft up a tree in north-east portion of Harper Park (south of Holy Cross school running track) at approx. 5:00 p.m. on Jan. 21.” 

Great Horned Owl – Karl Egressy

Harper Park in the south end of Peterborough is a natural treasure – Drew Monkman

Jan 212018
 

Northern Saw-whet Owl (Aegolius acadicus) (1)
– Reported Jan 20, 2018 14:00 by Alexandra Israel
– Lang Area, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42106339
– Media: 1 Photo
– Comments: “Alerted by mobbing chickadees. Only general location given.”

Northern Saw-whet Owl (Dave Heuft)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gray Jay (Northern) (Perisoreus canadensis [canadensis Group]) (1)
– Reported Jan 20, 2018 10:14 by Kenneth G.D. Burrell
– Kawartha Nordic Ski Club trails, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42093450
– Comments: “Called a few times, Lill spotted it along Trillium just north of Wolf Pond(?). Pretty unexpected!”

Gray Jay -Tom Northey Algonquin Park – March 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had 16 Purple Finches on my property on January 19.  Don Munro, Campbellford

Purple Finch (male) – Karl Egressy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

White-winged Crossbill (Loxia leucoptera) (4)
– Reported Jan 18, 2018 11:00 by Scott McKinlay
– Kawartha Nordic Ski Club trails, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42053565
– Comments: “On the Adam Scott trail. They were singing the varied pitch song from spruce trees next to the trail before flying off.”

White-winged Crossbill (female) – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) (2)
– Reported Jan 18, 2018 11:00 by Scott McKinlay
– Kawartha Nordic Ski Club trails, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Good views of a male and female that were responding to pishing by calling continuously and flying back and forth between three white pine trees that surrounded me. There was no white at all for either bird on the solid dark wings. The gip gip gip calls were in groups of 2 to 6. These were located about 1/3 of the way along the PT trail, travelling east to west.”

Red Crossbill – male – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) (2)
– Reported Jan 19, 2018 12:30 by Tim Haan
– 158 George Street North, Peterborough, Ontario, CA (44.299, -78.318), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Both male and female near the train bridge”

Pair of Northern Pintail – Karl Egressy

 

 

 

 

 

Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator) (3)
– Reported Jan 16, 2018 08:07 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Beavermead Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41958892
– Comments: “Males. Flyover. ”

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Jan 16, 2018 09:44 by Scott Gibson
– 288 Scriven Road, Bailieboro, Ontario, CA (44.146, -78.313), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41959644
– Media: 2 Photos
– Comments: “top of hill in tree beside rd. pics.”

I had a couple of firsts today: first time skiing and first Snowy Owl of the winter. I saw an eBird posting at 11:15 this morning (January 16) and immediately twitched out to see the bird at 11:30 on Scriven Line. I also, watched about 100 Snow buntings for 20 minutes but couldn’t find one Lapland Longspur. Michael Gillespie

Snow Bunting (from Crossley ID Guide)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus) (1)
– Reported Jan 15, 2018 09:05 by Chris Risley
– Petroglyphs Provincial Park, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Black head and back with barred sides, hammering on and peeling bark from a red pine. Spotted about 300 meters beyond the park gate.”

Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator) (3)
– Reported Jan 15, 2018 15:17 by Toby Rowland
– Peterborough–Otonabee River (Lock 19), Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.2879468,-78.3082509&ll=44.2879468,-78.3082509
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41943549
– Comments: “Continuing three slightly worn males just below the lock”

Red-breasted Merganser (male) – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Jan 14, 2018 16:00 by Colin Jones
– Peterborough–Little Lake, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.2965341,-78.3105472&ll=44.2965341,-78.3105472
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41908174
– Comments: “Sitting on the water fountain structure in the middle of the lake. Found earlier in the day by Warren Dunlop.”

Ruffed Grouse: I read your recent column on the winter bird counts. What you say about grouse is accurate. I saw one grouse today, whereas normally I would scare up six. The most I have ever seen in one group decades ago was 18 on a rainy day because they don’t like to fly when they are wet. Mel Fee, Cavan

Ruffed Grouse – Parry Sound – via Rob Moos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ruffed Grouse: I wanted to comment on the grouse mystery. Growing up on a farm in the 50 & 60s we did hunt locally and there were always an abundance of grouse, hares, jacks and cottontails. Habitat has been reduced in some areas but not in others so what has changed? Coyotes have arrived in great numbers all across southern Ontario. We continually have tracks in our yard. Along with a very healthy Red Fox population I believe that anything nesting on the ground doesn’t have much of a chance. Would be interested to know if other ground nesting birds such as the Killdeer have seen declines. Always enjoy your columns and just to let you know I stopped hunting 50 years ago.  Al Mace, Westview Dr. Omemee

Dec 262017
 

Barred Owl: Sighted Saturday, December 30, at 2:30pm in Burnham’s Woods (Mark S. Burnham Provincial Park) on Hwy 7, just east of Peterborough. It was sitting in one of the large hemlock trees about 40 metres from the end of the parking lot. I wouldn’t have seen it had it not flown to its perch from another location west of the trail. I was able to watch it from a distance of about 20 metres for about 10 minutes before it flew to another location.  Ross Jamieson

Barred Owl – Michael Gillespie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Algonquin Park Report

Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2017 10:01:48 -0500
From: Ron Tozer <rtozer@vianet.ca>
To: ontbirds <birdalert@ontbirds.ca>
Subject: [Ontbirds] Algonquin Park Birding Report: 28 December 2017
Message-ID: <A7327352-E422-4BC0-8158-F8AE6C174739@vianet.ca>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=”UTF-8″

This week’s extremely cold temperatures seemed at odds with evidence of breeding activity by White-winged Crossbills in the Park. A male was observed feeding a female (?courtship feeding?) near the Old Airfield, and three or four males were singing along Spruce Bog Boardwalk, on December 24. Craig Benkman (in The Birds of North America, 1992) reported that this crossbill breeds during three main periods of the year which coincide with maximum availability of conifer seeds. In Algonquin, records indicate breeding in summer and fall (July to November), winter (January to March), and spring (March to June).

Snow depth in the Park now reaches about 25 cm in the open and less under conifers, making it feasible to travel in most areas without snowshoes. As usual, snow on the walking trails has been flattened down with use.

-Wild Turkey: several are coming daily to feed below the Visitor Centre parking lot feeder.

-Ruffed Grouse: sightings continued at the Visitor Centre driveway and feeders.

Spruce Grouse: try Spruce Bog Boardwalk near the trail register box and Opeongo Road north of the winter gate.

Black-backed Woodpecker: one was seen along Spruce Bog Boardwalk on December 24.

Gray Jay: regular along Opeongo Road from the winter gate northward, and on Spruce Bog Boardwalk.

Boreal Chickadee: after several weeks with no reports, one was along Opeongo Road (December 24) and two were at Wolf Howl Pond (December 25).

Winter finches reported this week were: Purple Finch (regular at Visitor Centre feeders), Red Crossbill (small flocks on the highway; and often seen off Visitor Centre deck), White-winged Crossbill (small flocks), Common Redpoll (three along Opeongo Road on December 24 were the first reported since late October), Pine Siskin (fairly numerous), American Goldfinch (fairly numerous) and Evening Grosbeak (about 20 at the Visitor Centre feeders daily). Ron Tozer, Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired), Dwight, ON.


 

Bald Eagles: Sighted Dec 30, 2017 at 7:30am. I had two Bald Eagles perching in a large tree at the waters edge on Rice Lake. A beautiful sight! Esther Ross, north side of Rice Lake, Bailieboro east 

Bald Eagle: Sighted Dec 29, 2017 at 2pm. I just saw a big, beautiful adult Bald Eagle fly north over the farm towards County Road 2.  Michael Gillespie, Fife Line, Keene

Bald Eagle (Karl Egressy)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gray Jay (Perisoreus canadensis) (1)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 07:05 by Tyler L. Hoar
– Sandy Lake Pine barrens/Sedge marshes, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “In Black Spruce Bog area east side of largest sedge fen.”

Gray Jay in Algonquin Park – Jan. 2012 – Drew Monkman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) (12)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 07:05 by Tyler L. Hoar
– Sandy Lake Pine barrens/Sedge marshes, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.659557,-77.8931522&ll=44.659557,-77.8931522
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41394509
– Comments: “11 of 12 were in White Pine dominated areas, 1 in Eastern Hemlock was actually singing.”

Red Crossbill – Wikipedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) (1)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 09:50 by Colin Jones
– Kawartha Nordic Ski Club trails, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Slowly soared overhead at 12:56 pm”

Juvenile Golden Eagle – USFWS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barred Owl (Strix varia) (1)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 09:50 by Colin Jones
– Kawartha Nordic Ski Club trails, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.6201046,-78.1319386&ll=44.6201046,-78.1319386
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41383205

Barred Owl – Jan. 18, 2017 – Michael Gillespie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus) (1)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 07:30 by Iain Rayner
– Ptbo – Petroglyphs CBC Area D, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist:
– Comments: “Flaking bark from dead Red Pine in Petroglyphs Park N of McGinnis lake on E branch. Just S of connecting road.”

Black-backed Woodpecker – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) (2)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 08:22 by Colin Jones
– CA-ON-North Kawartha (44.6205,-78.1324), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:

Red_Crossbill – male – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crossbill (Female), Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) (12)
– Reported Dec 28, 2017 09:50 by Colin Jones
– Kawartha Nordic Ski Club trails, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.6201046,-78.1319386&ll=44.6201046,-78.1319386
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41383205
– Comments: “Several small groups”

Lapland Longspur (Calcarius lapponicus) (2)
– Reported Dec 26, 2017 11:00 by Ben Evans
– The Bird’s house, Peterborough, Ontario (in village of Douro)
Map:
Checklist:

Lapland Longspur – Note rufous on wing coverts – Wikimedia

Flock of Lapland Longspurs – Wikimeda

 

 

 

 

 

 

Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula) (1)
– Reported Dec 26, 2017 09:00 by Martin Parker
– Peterborough – 1494 Westbrook Drive, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=44.3048253,-78.3463812&ll=44.3048253,-78.3463812
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41335870
– Comments: “continuing individual”

Common Grackle – from The Crossley ID Guide to Eastern Birds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snow Buntings: Today, Dec. 26, at noon. My first winter birds! A “squall” of Snow Buntings – at least 30 – flying over Hwy 28, just south of County Road 6 (Lakefield), to a field on the west side. Quite the sight!   Marilyn Freeman

Snow Buntings – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snowy Owl: On December 24, 09:50, I saw a Snowy Owl (probably a male) northeast of Lindsay. It was on a hydro pole along Highway 36, about half-way along the north-south stretch from Cheese Factory to the bend before Snug Harbour Road.  Alan Crook

Snowy Owl (Nima Taghaboni)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rough-legged Hawk: Despite the deteriorating mound of the deer carcass in the orchard, it did attract a Rough-legged Hawk this morning, December 24. Michael Gillespie, David Fife Line, Keene

Rough-legged Hawk (Karl Egressy)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red-bellied Woodpecker: On Nov 18, I reported a Red-bellied Woodpecker female and saw another female today, Dec 24, on the north shore of Buckhorn Lake at Kawartha Hideaway. It was poking under the bark of an old maple tree. Jane Philpott

Red-bellied Woodpecker (female) – Jennifer MacKenzie Dec 31, 2014

Dec 082017
 

N.B. Whenever I refer to “home”, it is between Warsaw and Lakefield, south of the Sawer Creek Wetland.

Passerines and other birds and animals.

  • A Yellow-billed Cuckoo flew over my kayak as I began to paddle up the Indian River from Back Dam Park at Warsaw on September 9th. It called twice upon landing across the river.
  • This was the last date I saw the Great Egret that I had originally discovered there on August 5th.
  • Two Red Crossbills were also seen and heard a little way up the river on that day, and others were seen and/or heard several times over the course of the fall at Warsaw, at home, and spots around Stoney Lake, Northey’s Bay Road, and Nepthon. No real “flocks” as yet, but birds numbered from one to six individuals when encountered. Most recent were six at home on December 5th.
  • An American Pipit was skulking about in a pasture south of Long Lake, NW of Warsaw, on September 28th.
  • Pine Siskins have been occasional from early October to present. With the exception of 40+ birds seen near Warsaw on November 22nd, (and not unlike the crossbills that have been around), siskin numbers remain rather low.
  • On October 26th, at Nephton Ridge, I saw my last Monarch of the year. It was #532 for 2017, which is more than double my previous highest annual count since I began counting them seven years ago. Of the 532, 31 were observed as road fatalities.
  • Also on October 26th, I heard a Greater Yellowlegs call before dawn from the starry sky above at home, and another near Nephton Ridge later that morning.
  • One Tundra Swan with nine Canada Geese was seen flying overhead at home on October 27th, 28th and 30th. A lone Tundra Swan flew over the same location on November 2nd. I wondered if it was the one who had been flying with the nine geese?
  • On September 24th, I stepped out of dense cedars into a pasture and found myself very close to two Sandhill Cranes. They seemed at ease as long as I stayed in motion, just walking about as they were. Whenever I stopped or crouched, they moved away from me.

  • The loud calling of just over 300 Sandhill Cranes in two groups on Nov. 17th was heard as the birds were heading westward over my house. I photographed each entire flock at wide angle so I could later zoom the images on the computer and get an exact count. The first flock at 2:13pm numbered 173 birds and the second group four minutes later contained 128 for a combined total of 301 cranes. These birds were very likely the same, or associated with the large groups that Bill Buddle had reported at about 2:30pm the same day over Lakefield.

  • Ed Heuvel and I saw a much smaller flock of seven birds over his house between Cottesloe and Norwood on Nov. 23rd.
  • No doubt due to the warmth of early December, two Eastern Chipmunks were seen running across Round Lake Road north of Havelock on December 4th. They had all but disappeared not too long ago, and I’ve now seen five back out just this month.
  • Another warm weather sighting was of a Leopard Frog hopping across the yard at home on December 5th. I took some photos, and half an hour later, it was nowhere to be found.

  • On December 8th 2017, Ed Heuvel reported a road-killed Virginia Opossum he had just seen along Hwy 7 south of Sherbrooke Street.

   Raptors of interest

  • On September 11th, an immature Peregrine appeared amidst twenty-four kettling Turkey Vultures NW of Warsaw. The falcon harassed a couple of the vultures before peeling off on its own, heading SW.

  • As is my habit if I am out in the yard after dark during the fall or winter, I called for owls. From about the 24th of September until about the 3rd of November, Saw-whet Owls move about during their annual fall migration. The first that responded to my calls this year was a single bird on September 29th. On October 18th, however, no less than four of the little owls showed up inside of about a minute of my first attempt at calling. One was in the spruces to the east of the yard, while the other three were surrounding me, within the small grove of apple trees where I stood. With the three of them looking at each other more than at me, I found it easy to take some photos of the two that were closest to me, (about two metres away).
  • Dates later than the average “end date” of their normal migration that I have called one in this year have been November 8th, 12th, 27th and December 1st. These likely represent one or more wintering birds, and all have been at home near Warsaw.

  • Ed Heuvel flushed a Short-eared Owl from the ground on the morning of Oct. 17th on his 40 acre property NW of Norwood while out for a walk with his dog. Ed has turned what was once a sloping old field into a thriving tallgrass prairie, having seeded it with many native prairie plant species. I thought it quite fitting for such a bird to turn up in this “new” prairie grassland habitat. Good one, Ed!!
  • Paddling up the Indian River from Back Dam again on October 21st, Angela and I saw a few good raptors during our time on the water. First was an immature Northern Goshawk flying overhead, and then, about two minutes later, an immature Cooper’s Hawk following almost the exact same “path”. A while later, paddling back downstream, Angela spotted an adult male Merlin as it perched in the dead top branches of a spruce. Driving back through Warsaw, a Red-tailed Hawk soared low over the village. We headed up Payne’s Line towards home and spotted the first Golden Eagle of the season (a sub-adult bird) slowly soaring not far from the large metal tower there. We took a few photos and headed home. The next day, I saw another (immature this time) Golden Eagle fly over, east to west, from the yard at home.

  • I was accompanied by three friends, (Drew Monkman, Martin Parker, and Ed Heuvel) on Oct. 26th for a few hours of raptor watching in the Nephton Ridge/Kosh Lake area at the east end of County Road #6. My one intent for the day was to point out to Drew, his first “Ontario” Golden Eagle. Well, unless the “eagle sp.” we saw that morning was a Golden, we did not see one. However, we were treated to 8 Bald Eagles which, apart from one 4th winter bird, all were adults. At one point, four adult Balds soared together directly overhead. A while later, two adults came along together, and after that, another by itself. Since there was such a lack of immature eagles, and the fact that four adults had come from different directions, soared a while together, and then dispersed somewhat northward… we questioned how many of them might have actually even been migrants, or perhaps local breeding birds. Additional raptors for the day were five Red-tailed Hawks, and two (one adult and one immature) Red-shouldered Hawks.

  • Just after 11:00am on Nov. 11th a group of large birds caught my eye to the north of the house. On closer inspection, I could see three Common Ravens dive-bombing an immature Golden Eagle. I watched them for several minutes before the ravens went east and the eagle, west.

  • On October 29th a dark morph Rough-legged Hawk was seen perched in a tree along County Rd #6 just west of Camp Line. It was the first of the season for me, and since, I’ve seen another eight Rough-legs between Norwood and Lakefield. Of the nine seen so far, three have been dark morph birds.
  • Having had seen no immature Bald Eagles during the autumn season as yet, on the morning of Nov. 17th, two 1st winter birds, and then a 2nd winter bird appeared soaring over my yard in a ten-minute period. They all seemed to come from the west, and once a considerable altitude was reached, they each headed off in completely different directions. I suspect that they had all spent some time feeding together, and were now dispersing. It was only two days after the annual rifle deer hunt had ended, and I wondered if they had just dined on the gut pile of a deer left somewhere by hunters.
  • The great backyard birding continued on November 26th, as no sooner had I sat in the yard with my morning coffee, an immature Northern Goshawk flew from east to west. If that wasn’t enough, my fourth Golden Eagle of the season (an adult) appeared over the forest to the east, soared two circles, and headed back east just after noon.
  • Nov. 29th an adult rufous morph Red-tailed Hawk soared over the yard. I had to run in and get the scope as it looked not like a typical Red-tail. The rusty-red undersides and the dark brown back were easily seen with the optics. It had been a long time since I’ve seen this variety of the species.
  • On the night of December 01 – 02, after calling at home for Screech, Saw-whet, and Boreal Owls, (the latter, because you never know if you don’t try), I finally stirred an Eastern Screech Owl who called for quite a while afterwards. And briefly, a Northern Saw-whet Owl answered my calls with the “tew, tew, tew” call. About an hour later, just after mid-night, while bringing in some firewood, the pair of Northern Barred Owls that live on the property year-round, began calling with hoots which soon morphed into their monkey-like “whacka, whacka, whacka” calls. Not too bad for spending a little time in the yard after dark!!
  • Just after 2:00pm on December 6th, I saw a large, pale bird far out to the east, soaring in wide circles. It appeared gull-like as it moved quite fast in the strong winds. I got the scope on it just before it passed in behind the treetops and out of my view. Revealed by the scope was the darkish under-body contrasting with entirely white undersides of the wings of an immature Snowy Owl. Unless my memory is misfiring, this would be the first of this species I have seen this century. If that wasn’t enough stimulation for one day, a little over an hour later, I saw a second Snowy for the day as it flew into strong south winds at 3:15pm. The latter bird was decidedly whiter than the first, with very few dark markings. The first bird simply would not show up in the photos I took, (too far), and the camera was nowhere near me as I watched the second owl sail past much closer. Both were heading in a north-to-south direction, lending a little support to the idea that they might have been in migration at the time.
  • On December 7th while I still lay in bed, through the window next to me, I spotted a 1st winter Bald Eagle fly past over the trees to the east. It soared briefly and then continued on in a SE direction.
  • While moving the fallen foliage around with the leaf blower on December 8th at home, I looked up, (as I find I constantly am doing these days) and saw two large, dark birds very high almost straight above me. Before I was able to grab the scope, I could see that they were eagles. Once in focus, the white bases of tails and primaries with all other plumage completely dark, identified them both as 1st winter Golden Eagles. A strong and steady SW wind pushed them NW of me. They were only about ten wingspans (about 20 m) apart and one was just a little ahead of the other. They slowed briefly once or twice, but never paused to soar while I had them in view.

1st winter Golden Eagle – USFWS

Tim Dyson – Warsaw

Dec 032017
 

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) (1)
– Reported Dec 09, 2017 12:01 by Ben Taylor
– Charlotte and Rubidge, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
– Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S40994101
– Comments: “Seen flying east along Charlotte Street. Stocky bird with steady, powerful wingbeats.”

Northern Shrike (Lanius borealis) (1)
– Reported Dec 09, 2017 08:48 by Matthew Tobey
– Otonabee River b/w Peterborough and Lakefield, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Hunting on far shore north of lock 24.”

Northern Shrike – Tom Northey

(Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Dec 09, 2017 10:20 by Ian Sturdee
– Cordova Lake, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “On rock island in middle of lake. Probable young female female- heavily patterned. ”

Snowy Owl – Wendy Leszkowicz

Snowy Owl: I photographed this Snowy Owl on December 4 near Colborne. The bird was just south of the 401 on County Road 25, just past Purdy Corners.  Jeff Keller

Snowy Owl – Colborne – Dec. 4, 2017 – Jeff Keller

 

Northern Goshawk (American) (Accipiter gentilis atricapillus/laingi) (1)
– Reported Dec 06, 2017 11:10 by Luke Berg
– Lansdowne St W at The Parkway, Peterborough CA-ON , Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “First winter bird flying south over Lansdowne, briefly pursuing a flock of pigeons. ”

Northern Goshawk – Wikimedia

Red-bellied Woodpecker:  This red-bellied has been visiting my office window feeder at Camp Kawartha on Clear Lake. Jacob Rodenburg

Red-bellied Woodpecker at Camp Kawartha – December 4, 2017 – Jacob Rodenburg

Snowy Owl:  We sighted and photographed this Snowy Owl this morning, Dec. 3 at 8:30 AM on Clear Lake.  John McGregor

Dec 022017
 

 

 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Dec 02, 2017 09:40 by Donald A. Sutherland
– Peterborough–E side Airport Rd opposite Peterborough Municipal Airport, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Media: 1 Photo
– Comments: “perched atop ventilation ducts on roof of easternmost blue building (Flying Colours Corp) on N side airport. Record shot from 500 m to S.”

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Dec 01, 2017 07:25 by Iain Rayner
– Pigeon Lake–Sandy Point, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Truthfully in Kawartha Lakes…Sitting on green marker buoy across lake directly out from launch. Seen well through scope in good viewing conditions with limited haze. Some markings on breast, clean white head.”

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1) Yesterday afternoon, November 30, I was lucky enough to have a Snowy Owl perch on top of my house around noon. I only noticed when I heard the crows alarm-calling. I live right on George Street in Peterborough and added the observation to eBird if you’re interested in exactly where he was. He was beautiful and rested there for about 20 minutes. It was a first for me and a very timely sighting given your article!   Jenn Baici

 

Snowy Owl (Karin Laine)

Snowy Owl (Nima Taghaboni)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Redhead (Aythya americana) (1)
– Reported Dec 02, 2017 11:13 by Donald A. Sutherland
– Rice Lake–Pengelly Landing, Peterborough, Ontario
– Map:
– Checklist:
– Comments: “male, in with HOME in mixed flock to W of cormorant colony on island”

male Redhead – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A great morning of birding in Peterborough and southern Peterborough County

The highlight of our birding outing this morning, November 29, were the waterfowl at Pengelley Landing on Rice Lake, located at the bottom of Scriven Road. They included 400 Common Mergansers, 200 Hooded Mergansers, 500 Canada Geese and 1 Common Loon. We also saw a Rough-legged Hawk on Country Road 2, just east of Bailieboro. In Peterborough, we found 2 American Coots by the Silver Bean Cafe at Millenium Park, 2 Pied-billed Grebes at the T-wharf on Little Lake, 64 American Goldfinch and 1 Golden-crowned Kinglet at Little Lake Cemetery and 24 American Robins at GreenUP Ecology Park.  The goldfinch were eating seeds from the abundant cones on the Eastern White Cedar. The robins were feeding on European Buckthorn berries.

Drew Monkman, Martin Parker and Brian Wales

Common Merganser (female), Wikimedia

Common Merganser male – Wikimedia

male Hooded Merganser – Peter Beales

Pied-billed Grebe – Wikimedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rough-legged Hawk (Karl Egressy)

American Coot (Karl Egressy)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata) (1) CONFIRMED
– Reported Nov 25, 2017 08:01 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Little Lake Cemetery, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Yellow rump, faint yellow on sides, white chin/throat. Feeding along waters edge near railway bridge. Calling frequently. ”

Yellow-rumped Warbler at feeder – Nov. 28, 2014 Franmor Dr. Ptbo – Sue Prentice

Cackling Goose (Richardson’s) (Branta hutchinsii hutchinsii) (1)
– Reported Nov 26, 2017 13:46 by Martin Parker
– Rice Lake–Pengelly Landing, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “With large Canada Goose flock near shore on Rice Lake.”

Cackling Goose (foreground) – Brendan Boyd

Nov 302017
 

Expect a lot of snow and a ‘classic Canadian winter’

In my fall nature almanac, I had the temerity to predict that the sunshine and cool temperatures of early September would lead to extraordinary leaf colour. Well, I sure got that wrong. In fact, this fall’s colour show was one of the worst in recent memory – especially for sugar maples, which are a dominant tree species in the Kawarthas. From all accounts, the reason for the poor display was the intense heat that soon arrived and lasted until the end of October. With average temperatures about three degrees above normal and near-drought conditions, the intense reds, oranges and yellows never materialized. Yellow and brown leaves dominated the landscape and many leaves fell early. As a result of climate change, warmer temperatures are expected to delay the onset of peak colours in future years and shorten the colour season as a whole. When temperatures are as extreme as they were this year, duller colours are likely to be the norm, as well.

Looking ahead to winter, the forecast right now is for more snow than usual – a “classic Canadian winter” in the words of The Weather Network. La Nina conditions in the equatorial Pacific are expected to affect the weather pattern across North America in the coming months. La Niña is a large-scale climate pattern associated with cooler than normal water surface temperatures in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. La Niña often results in greater precipitation in eastern Canada. That being said, the winter is not expected to be unusually cold.

As a reminder of what to watch for in nature in the coming months, I have prepared the following list of highlights.

DECEMBER

·        A large incursion of snowy owls is possible this winter, maybe similar to 2013-14. Several birds have already been seen locally, including one at the Peterborough Airport. Snowy owls are usually observed in fields, where they perch on knolls, fences and hay bales.

·        Last winter, record numbers of American robins overwintered in the Kawarthas, thanks mostly to a huge crop of wild grape. This year’s grape crop is quite small, however, so far fewer robins are likely to remain. Those that do stay might be attracted to the abundant berries on eastern red cedars and winterberry hollies.

·        Keep an eye out for wild turkeys. Their large, dark bodies are easy to spot in winter, as flocks feed in fields. Jenn Baici, a PhD student at Trent University, is studying these birds and would love your help. If you see wild turkeys, please submit your sighting at eBird.org. You can also share a photo of the flock at the Peterborough Wild Turkey Count project on iNaturalist.org. Just be sure to include the location and number of turkeys observed. Using this data, Jenn hopes to estimate the size of Peterborough County’s wild turkey population.

·        Throughout the late fall and winter, gray squirrels are often seen high up in maples feeding on the keys.

·        Ducks lingering on lakes until freeze-up may include common goldeneye, buffleheads and both common and hooded mergansers  A small number of common loons, mostly young-of-the-year birds, remain until the ice comes, as well.

·        The early morning hours of December 13 and 14 are the peak viewing times for the Geminids meteor shower, which is the most consistently good meteor display of the year.

·        Before too much snow falls, take time to walk around the edge of wetlands to look for interesting ice formations such. These include ice crystals imitating stalagmites. Leaves, sticks, and bubbles frozen in the ice can also be intriguing.

·        Welcome to the “dark turn of the year.” Daylight this month averages only about 8 ¾ hours. Compare this to 15 ½ hours in June – a difference of nearly seven hours!

·        Balsam fir makes the perfect Christmas tree. I love its symmetrical shape, long-lasting needles and wonderful fragrance.

·        From December 14 to January 5, Christmas Bird Counts take place across North America. The counts data reflect trends in bird populations. The 66th Peterborough Christmas Bird Count will be held on Sunday, December 17, while the Petroglyphs Count is scheduled for Wednesday, December 27. Birders of all levels of experience are welcome to participate. For more information, contact Martin Parker (mparker19@cogeco.ca) for the Peterborough Count and Colin Jones (cdjonesmclark@gmail.com) for the Petroglyph Count.

·        Thursday, December 21, marks the winter solstice and the first day of winter. The tilting of the Earth away from the sun also produces the longest night of the year. The sun rises and sets at its southernmost points on the eastern and western horizons.

·        Watch for common redpolls and pine siskins at your nyger-seed feeder. There is a good possibility that both species will turn up this winter. Keep an eye on the tops of your spruce trees, too, for flocks of white-winged and red crossbills. They love to eat the seeds hidden in the cones, and this year’s cone crop is huge!

JANUARY

·         Even though the days grow longer after the solstice, they begin to do so very slowly. In fact, in the first week of January, sunrise is later than at any other time of the year. The sun doesn’t peak over the horizon until 7:49 a.m. Compare this to June 20 when the sun rises at 5:29 a.m.

·        Watch for ruffed grouse at dawn and dusk along tree-lined country roads. The birds often appear in silhouette as they feed on buds such as those of trembling aspen.

·        Small numbers of common goldeneyes and common mergansers can be seen all winter long on the Otonabee River, at Young’s Point and at Gannon Narrows.

·        Coyotes are quite vocal during their January to March mating season.

·        If you’re walking in the woods, you’ll notice that some of the smaller trees have retained many of their leaves. These are usually beech, oak, or ironwood.

·        Honeybees are the only insects to maintain an elevated body temperature all winter. They accomplish this by clustering together in a thick ball within the hive, vibrating their wings to provide heat and eating stored honey for the necessary energy.

·        Barred owls sometimes show up in rural and suburban backyards, where they prey on feeder birds or mice and voles that are attracted at night by fallen seeds.

·        In late January, black bears give birth to cubs no larger than chipmunks. Generally, two cubs are born.

FEBRUARY

·        We begin the month with about 9 ¾ hours of daylight and end with 11, a gain of about 75 minutes. The lengthening days are most notable in the afternoon.

·        Groundhog Day, February 2, marks the mid-point of winter. However, our groundhogs won’t see their shadow – or light of day, for that matter – until mid-March at the earliest. In case you were wondering, no animal or plant behaviour can portend upcoming weather beyond a few hours.

·        Although tentative at first, bird song returns in February as pair bonds are established or renewed. Black-capped chickadees, northern cardinals, and white-breasted nuthatches are several of the birds that usually start singing this month.

·        Gray squirrels mate in January or February and can often be seen streaming by in treetop chases as a group of males chases a half-terrorized female. Amazing acrobatics are usually part of the show.

·        The Great Backyard Bird Count takes place Friday, February 16, through Monday, February 19. This citizen science event engages bird watchers of all levels of expertise to create a real-time snapshot of the whereabouts and relative abundance of birds in mid-winter. Anyone can participate. Go to www.birdcount.org for details.

·        The male common goldeneye puts on an elaborate courtship display in late winter. He thrusts his head forward and then moves it back towards his rump. With his bill pointing skyward, he utters a squeaky call.

·        On mild, sunny, late winter days, check the snow along the edge of woodland trails for snow fleas. What looks like spilled pepper may begin to jump around right before your eyes!

·        Testosterone-charged male skunks roll out of their dens any time from mid-February to early March and go on nocturnal prowls looking for females. The smell of a skunk on a damp, late winter night is a time-honoured sign of “pre-spring.”

MARCH

·         Duck numbers increase as buffleheads and hooded mergansers start arriving.

·        Chipmunks make their first appearance above ground since late fall. They were somewhat active all winter, however, making repeated trips to their underground storehouses for food.

·        The furry catkins of pussy willows and aspens poke through bud scales and become a time-honoured sign of spring’s imminent arrival.

·        By mid-March, the first northward-bound turkey vultures are usually seen. The first songbirds, too, usually return by mid-month. In the city, the most notable new arrivals are robins and grackles. In rural areas, watch for red-winged blackbirds perched high in wetland trees.

·        For anyone paying attention, the increase in bird song is hard to miss. If you don’t already know the voices of common songsters, this is a great time to start learning them. Go to allaboutbirds.org, enter the name of the species, and click on the Sound tab.

·        Jupiter and Mars are spectacular in the early morning sky this month.

·        The spring equinox occurs on March 20 as the sun shines directly on the equator. Both the moon and sun rise due east and set due west. For the next six months, we can enjoy days that are longer than nights.

 

 

 

Nov 142017
 

I sent you a note about this time last year about a small flock of Sandhill Cranes passing over Lakefield. Well, this year they have been joined by some friends. At about 2:30 this afternoon, November 17, about 4 flocks of the size of the group in the picture passed over Lakefield, some calling with the deep rolling kr-r-r-oo as described in an old Peterson guide book. One big flock circled about for awhile south of us – probably up over the Lakefield quarry – until it reformed into two or three smaller flocks and then they followed a couple of groups that passed about 10 minutes earlier and seemed to be heading west to northwest. There were probably over 200 birds in total…. a wonderful sight.  Bill Buddle

Sandhill Cranes – November 17, 2017 – Lakefield – Bill Buddle

 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Nov 14, 2017 09:58 by Travis Cameron
– Lakefield (General), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Flying west over County Road 29 ~250m south of Maples Corners.”

An immature Snowy Owl in flight – probably a female (Karl Egressy)

 

We are witnessing scores of Mourning Doves this fall here near Bailieboro, ON. We’re in the country, so we’re used to these birds, but this is unbelievable. They are in at least two flocks. I counted 30 in one. And they eat berries; just ask my car. L. Harries

Mourning Dove – Karl Egressy

 

Here’s a picture of three Trumpeter Swans (two adults and one juvenile) that I photographed on Upper Buckhorn Lake on Nov. 12, 2017.  Derry Fairweather

Trumpeter Swans – November 12, 2017 – Buckhorn Lake – Derry Fairweather

 

I had a Yellow-rumped Warbler at my feeder yesterday, November 12. Hopefully , the seeds will sustain/attract it until December 1st for the official winter bird list! So far, the resident Red-bellied Woodpecker has ignored the suet and chooses the feeder seeds every time. It is certainly a different behaviour for a woodpecker. Michael Gillespie, Keene

Yellow-rumped Warbler at feeder – Nov. 28, 2014 Franmor Dr. Ptbo – Sue Prentice

 

I found this lovely Witch Hazel blooming in a wild area of Ecology Park today, November 12. It could so easily be overlooked! I read that they bloom at this time of year in order to take advantage of the lack of competition for the few flies and moths that are still active. We did see both that day.   Sue Paradisis

Witch Hazel 2 – Ecology Park – Nov. 13, 2017 – Sue Paradisis

 

 

Witch Hazel – Ecology Park – Nov. 13, 2017 – Sue Paradisis

 

 

 

Jan 242016
 

Well, it’s been a year since I had the pleasure to take a photo of a Snowy Owl. My friend, Carl, and I went in search of this guy and found him (near Woodville). We had to walk quite a distance across a field to get a shot but it was worth it.
Tim Corner

Snowy Owl - Woodville - Jan. 23, 2015 - Tim Corner

Snowy Owl – Woodville, ON – Jan. 23, 2015 – Tim Corner

 

Jan 032016
 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Jan 02, 2016 14:15 by Linda Sunderland
– Scriven Road, Bailieboro, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Scriven Road on top of telephone pole between 2nd and 3rd Line, female – first winter”

Note:  Graham Yates reports finding a beautiful Barred Owl in Jackson Park on Saturday, January 2, as well. “The bird was napping but kept an eye on me every so often by swiveling its head. Watched it for quite a while. Made my day!”

Northern Barred Owl - Tim Dyson - NBR - 051214

Northern Barred Owl – Tim Dyson – NBR – 051214

Snowy Owl - 11-22-14 Elm Tree Road - Tom Northey

First winter Snowy Owl – 11-22-14 Elm Tree Road – Tom Northey

Snowy Owl - David Hemmings

First winter Snowy Owl – David Hemmings

Dec 242015
 

A Snowy Owl was observed for over 30 minutes on Dec 15th in the corn field behind Jim Glenn’s main depot in Keene.

Michael Gillespie

Snowy Owl - Tim Corner - Dec. 31, 2014

Snowy Owl – Tim Corner – Dec. 31, 2014

Nov 302015
 

My husband and I spotted a Snowy Owl at about 10 AM on November 14th. It was sitting in a tree along the side of our road.  We live about 10 min’s northwest of Young’s Point. The owl was just sitting there looking around. We were able to reverse the truck, take pictures and watch him for about 5 min’s before he flew off. Even then he only flew back into the woods about 30 feet and landed again.  It was pretty exciting, since neither of us had ever seen one before. Unfortunately we don’t have a very good camera, so this is the best shot we got.  We haven’t seen him since.

Karen Millage

Snowy Owl - Nov. 15 - Young's Pt. - Karen Millage

Snowy Owl – Nov. 14 – Young’s Pt. – Karen Millage

Feb 202015
 

I caught sight of this Snowy Owl on a hydro pole along County Rd 4 during a snow squall Wednesday morning (Feb 18, 2015). It was my fourth Snowy photographed this winter so far. The bird was quite large and had heavy barring along chest. I also took this photo of our backyard feeder being visited by no less than 11 Blue Jays at one time!

Snowy Owl - Nima Taghaboni - Cty Rd 4 - Feb. 18, 2015

Snowy Owl – Nima Taghaboni – Cty Rd 4 – Feb. 18, 2015

10 Blue Jays in tree by feeder - Feb. 18, 2015 - Nima Taghaboni -

10 Blue Jays in tree by feeder – Feb. 18, 2015 – Nima Taghaboni –

Nima Taghaboni

Feb 152015
 

My friend, Carl, and I were coming back from the Wolf Centre in Haliburton today and decided to travel down County Road 36, south of Bobcaygen, as we have come across a Snowy Owl along there before. Today we were extra lucky, as we happened to see both a Barred Owl and a Snowy!

Tim Corner

Barred Owl - Tim Corner - Feb. 14, 2014

Barred Owl – Tim Corner – Feb. 14, 2014

Snowy Owl - Tim Corner - Feb. 14, 2015

Snowy Owl – Tim Corner – Feb. 14, 2015

Jan 302015
 

Researchers at the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry’s Wildlife Research and Monitoring Section in Peterborough are once again studying Short-eared and Snowy Owl diet. We are looking for changes in the owls’ diets over time and linking that to cyclical changes in prey abundance. We’re also exploring the extent of variability in their winter diet.  We are hoping to collect pellets throughout the winter and would like to enlist the help of the community. If you find any pellets, please contact me:

 

Val von Zuben
Wildlife Research Technician
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry
Wildlife Research and Monitoring Section
2140 East Bank Dr. Peterborough ON K9J7B8
cell: 705-957-6967
tel: 705-755-2265

valerie.vonzuben@ontario.ca

Snowy Owl - Tim Corner - Dec. 31, 2014

Snowy Owl – Tim Corner – Dec. 31, 2014

Short-eared Owl (Karl Egressy)

Short-eared Owl (Karl Egressy)

Jan 152015
 

Gadwall (Anas strepera) (1)
– Reported Jan 14, 2015 08:40 by Walter Wehtje

Snowy Owl - Lindsay - Dec. 20, 2014 - Tim Corner

Snowy Owl – Lindsay – Dec. 20, 2014 – Tim Corner

– Peterborough–Monaghan boat ramp, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Continuing bird, male, on ice with mallards”

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Jan 14, 2015 17:20 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Little Lake, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Appears to be same individual noted 2 days ago. Dark back, either female or young owl. On North side of lake waddling across the ice towards a stoop, looking fluffed up. While watching the owl, a Peregrine Falcon began dive-bombing the owl, with the owl flipping its talons into the air for at least one of the dives. Drove to the North side of lake to get photos, but by the time I got there both birds were gone.”

 

Gadwall - a rare duck in winter in the Kawarthas - Wikimedia

Gadwall – a rare duck in winter in the Kawarthas – Wikimedia

Jan 022015
 

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Jan 01, 2015 15:10 by Scott Gibson
– Peterborough–Little Lake, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Immature sitting on Metal box in middle of lake. Have pic.
<iframe src=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/101666993@N07/15981484950/player/” width=”500″ height=”331″ frameborder=”0″></iframe>”

Snowy Owl - Tim Corner - Dec. 31, 2014

Snowy Owl – Tim Corner – Dec. 31, 2014

 

Dec 312014
 

I went shooting photos today with my friends, Carl and Dave, in search of a Snowy Owl. First we checked at County Rd. 19 but had no luck. We then took Hwy 7 west to Lindsay, as Carl saw owls along that route yesterday while out for a drive with his wife and, go figure, he didn’t have his camera. We had no luck along that route and tried around Lindsay airport where Carl and I saw one on Dec.20th and again we had no luck. We decided to try along Hwy 36 and finally we hit pay dirt as there was one on the wires just south of Snug Harbour Road, north of Lindsay. I have added a picture of the owl.

Snowy Owl - Tim Corner - Dec. 31, 2014

Snowy Owl – Tim Corner – Dec. 31, 2014

Tim Corner

Dec 312014
 

The Petroglyph’s Christmas Bird Count, centered on Petroglyph’s Provincial Park, was held on Saturday, December 27, 2014.  Twenty-seven birders took part. 2717 individual birds were counted.

Number of species: 38 (Just two shy of the record high of 40.)

Species recorded in a record high number: Red-tailed Hawk (10 vs previous high of 8), Herring Gull (8 vs 5), Great Horned Owl (3 vs 1), Barred Owl (11 vs 7), White-breasted Nuthatch (233 vs 119)

New species for the Count: Eastern Screech Owl (2), Merlin (1)

First time since 2009 (previously annual): Gray Jay (2)

Also of note:  1 Sharp-shinned Hawk (2cd time on Count),  5 Bald Eagles (average), 48 Downy Woodpecker (considerably higher than average), 456 Blue Jays (high), 43 Red-breasted Nuthatches (very low), 1 Winter Wren (only 4th time on Count), 106 Golden-crowned Kinglets (close to previous high of 120), 48 American Goldfinch (very low)

Colin Jones, co-ordinator

Merlin (Karl Egressy)

Merlin (Karl Egressy)

Gray Jay -Tom Northey Algonquin Park - March 2014

Gray Jay -Tom Northey Algonquin Park – March 2014

Dec 242014
 

My friend Carl and I were out on Saturday, December 20th in search of a Snowy Owl as we had learned there was one sighted near the Lindsay airport. On the way there we spotted a Coyote in a field across the road from the Pickseed Plant just outside of Lindsay. When we got to the airport we were surprised to see the Snowy Owl on a hydro pole very close to the road. When we got out of the car and approached he seemed not to care much and we were able to get pretty close. Attached are a couple of photos.

Tim Corner

Eastern Coyote - Tim Corner

Eastern Coyote – Lindsay – Dec. 20, 2014 – Tim Corner

 

Snowy Owl - Lindsay - Dec. 20, 2014 - Tim Corner

Snowy Owl – Lindsay – Dec. 20, 2014 – Tim Corner

Dec 222014
 

Cackling Goose (Branta hutchinsii) (2)
– Reported Dec 21, 2014 15:33 by Daniel Williams
– Peterborough–Little Lake Cemetery, Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “Mixed in with large flock of Canada Goose”

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Dec 21, 2014 14:20 by Erica Nol
– stakeout Snowy Owl, Peterborough (2013-2014), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “continuing bird, all white plumage, male, seen 100m N of Co Road 19 in field west of Deeth and White oil depot”

Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
– Reported Dec 21, 2014 12:32 by Scott Gibson
– stakeout Snowy Owl, Peterborough (2013-2014), Peterborough, Ontario
Map:
Checklist:
– Comments: “adult male (almost pure white); same location as last winter; sitting on fence post at back of field north side of road (west of chemong); drove by and the bird stood out like a beacon of light!”

Cackling Goose (small bird)  with two Canada Geese - Brendan Boyd

Cackling Goose (small bird) with two Canada Geese – Brendan Boyd

Snowy Owl - Dec. 5, 2014 - Nima Taghaboni

Snowy Owl – Dec. 5, 2014 – Nima Taghaboni

Dec 212014
 

I headed out to look for the Snowy that was reported west of Chemong Rd on 3rd line Smith, and found it and then found a second one — a heavily barred bird on a hydro tower adjacent to the solar farm on Ackison Road around 3:30 pm this afternoon.

Snowy Owl - 11-22-14  Elm Tree Road - Tom Northey

Snowy Owl – 11-22-14 Elm Tree Road – Tom Northey

Sue Wurtele

Dec 212014
 

This afternoon at 3 pm, a Snowy Owl was perched on a fence post in the field on the north side of County Road 19/Smith 3rd line, about 100 metres west of Chemong Road. It was almost pure white and would therefore appear to be an adult male. This is exactly the same field as a Snowy was in last winter. The same bird?? The bird was first reported at 10:15 am by Jen Sanderson, who lives in the farm house just to the north of where the owl is. Her husband  thought he saw it earlier in the week when he came home at night. His headlights caught a rabbit scurrying up the lane ahead of the car and then suddenly what he thought might be a Snowy Owl swooped in and seemed to chase after the rabbit until he ran for shelter behind a tool shed.

Drew Monkman

Note:  The owl was still present at Chemong Rd and 3rd Line Smith on Tuesday Dec 30th at 10:30am.  It was sitting on a low mound of dirt and branches about half way across the field between Deeth & White and the farm house to the north.  Mark Browning 

Adult male Snowy Owl - Wikimedia

Adult male Snowy Owl – Wikimedia – The Chemong bird is very similar to this one.

Dec 122014
 

A Snowy Owl flew over my head this afternoon about 4:45 PM as I was leaving the No Frills grocery store on Water Street at Sherbrooke Street in Peterborough. It flew out over the river and after that I lost sight of it. My first snowy this winter.

Cheryl Lewis

An immature Snowy Owl in flight - probably a female (Karl Egressy)

An immature Snowy Owl in flight – probably a female (Karl Egressy)