By Doug McRae
Photo: Andrea Kingsley
This report is primarily based on sightings gleaned from eBird, and those reported directly to me. I would be grateful to hear of any interesting sightings. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Your observations are very much appreciated. If you are reporting something rare, please provide some details (exact location, ID features noted) or photographs if possible. Finally in order to try and keep the database as accurate as possible, eBird accounts submitted under false names or pseudonyms will not be used unless I know who the actual observer is.
HIGHLIGHTS: Black-throated Blue Warbler
OVERVIEW: Once again there was almost no coverage of Presqu’ile for the second week in a row, which is a shame as there are a lot of breeding birds about now.
Hooded Merganser: Two were seen at the Woodpile Marsh (between High Bluff and Pines campground) on 6 Jul and a large young of the year was swimming alone on the north side of Gull Is. on 8 Jul.
Sharp-shinned Hawk: One was reported on 6 Jul.
Herring Gull: Several hundred pairs of Herring Gulls breed on Gull Is. but they appear to have had a failed year. Only one young of the year was noted on 8 Jul and several birds appear to still be sitting on nests, weeks after they should be. Whatever is behind this, it does not appear to have affected Ring-billed Gulls, which have thousands of young around now.
Rock Pigeon: Two were reported on 7 Jul. – a local rarity in the Park
Golden-crowned Kinglet: Two were noted along Jobes Woods trail on 2 Jul. Small numbers breed in some of the mature spruce plantations and dense conifer patches in Presqu’ile but are often hard to detect at this time of year.
Black-throated Blue Warbler: One was reported on 6 Jul. To my knowledge this species does not breed in the Park so this may be an unmated bird wandering or a failed breeder.
Orchard Oriole: In the past few decades this species has made great gains as a local breeder, especially on or near the Lake Ontario shoreline. This year far fewer breeders have been in evidence at the Park, three were still visiting a feeder near the lighthouse through the week. Orchard Oriole is one of our earliest fall migrants and most will likely be gone by early August.
Common Grackle: The number of post-breeding blackbirds roosting in the marsh at night is building – 450 grackles were seen leaving the marsh at dawn on 8 Jul.
Please Note: Access to Gull and High Bluff Island is closed to visitation between 10 March and 10 September to protect the thousands of colonial birds that nest on the islands.
Directions: Presqu’ile Provincial Park is located south of Brighton on the north shore of Lake Ontario. It is well signed from either Hwy. 401 or Cty. Rd. 2.
Doug McRae Shrew Solutions Inc. 240 Presqu’ile Parkway Brighton, Ontario K0K 1H0 613-475-5014 H 613-243-4161 C