About 25 participants enjoyed the beautiful weather today and overall found 65 species. The highlight stops were the wetland on Douro 9th Line just south of Cty Rd 4 where we saw/heard half a dozen Wilson’s Snipe. Going east along Division Rd we heard several Northern Waterthrush, all of which arrived in the last couple of nights. Rusty Blackbirds were seen/heard on Division Rd near Douro 7th Line. Field Sparrows were heard in at least three spots. One Purple Finch was seen on this stretch. A Sandhill Crane flew over the cars, a Brown Thrasher and a Great Crested Flycatcher were heard calling. Half of us had a good close-up of a Pileated Woodpecker. We stopped on Cty Rd 38 south of Division Rd looking for Upland Sandpipers which unfortunately have not yet arrived, but there were five Lesser Yellowlegs there, and about a dozen Wilson’s Snipe. Both a male and female Northern Harrier were also seen in this area. Many Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers were in evidence. On a flooded field on Asphodel 3rd Line south of Westwood had at least 20 mixed Lesser and Greater Yellowlegs, and 21 Green-winged Teal. On River Rd the Hepatica were in full bloom but the other wild flowers the area is noted for were not showing. Driving north from River Rd up Birdsall Line a pair of Blue-winged Teals and a pair of Wood Ducks were seen in a pond. Finally at another flooded field on Blezard Rd there were about 16 Northern Pintails, and more Yellowlegs. We all agreed that we have never seen so many Yellowlegs in one day in the County. After the Blezard stop we each made our own way home. Those that stayed with me were lucky enough to have Luke Berg pick out an Eastern Kingbird. Also Luke and I saw the two Caspian Terns on the rocks by Auburn Park on Water St.
On my way back to Lakefield I stopped to check the Cliff Swallow colony under the bike footpath bridge over the canal. They are back in numbers and busy rebuilding their nests. A Northern Rough-winged Swallow was sitting on the hydro wires beside River Rd.
Earlier, at about 7:00 am I had a House Wren singing in the Lakefield Park.
To finish a great day I sat on my deck for an hour and a half in the afternoon and counted 30 species including four flyovers by an adult Bald Eagle, a single Common Redpoll, a pair of Purple Finches, a pair of Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, a Ruffed Grouse, a pair of Eastern Phoebes, several White-throated Sparrows, flyover Belted Kingfisher and Killdeer, and a singing Field Sparrow.
Observer: Tony Bigg