Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Brunsz-wick


Well breeding birds are over, so I can now recuperate and get ready for the next trip/surveys - James Bay. But before we get ahead of ourselves, I just got back from a 3 day jaunt to New Brunswick to do some bird work. I had only been to New Brunswick once before this, and this was a long time ago (not in a galaxy far, far away...) - 10 years to be exact! So needless to say I was pretty excited when I was asked to do this. Heck with the chance of seeing some cool species, why not?!

So anyways, I flew in Friday afternoon, did surveys that evening, Saturday morning, and again Sunday morning. Our site was located roughly 80km east of Bathurst.
I should mention, that this is 'roughly' where the area I was....

Anywho, the area was pretty boreal, with lots of youngish stands of forest, primarily spruce and some aspen. Our first site yielded the most interesting species - Bicknell's Thrush, where a single bird was (still) on territory. I heard the bird sing a few times, but wasn't able to see it.

This site had Bicknell's Thrush. Elevation was close to 700m.

It was definitely an interesting place to bird - especially since I haven't spent alot of time there. I was pleasantly surprised to get things like Blackpoll Warbler, and most of the finches (WWCR, PUFI, PISI), while on the coast getting things like Northern Gannets, Black-legged Kittiwakes and Black Guillemots, and even a Lesser Black-backed Gull.

Gannets were pretty common in Chaleur Bay, likely close 120 were seen on Saturday afternoon.

Black Guillemot. We saw about 10-15 guillemots in total.

I was also able to take some non-birding pics (my sister will be happy with this...) while out and about.

My parents visited this same church WAY back in the day (it was a Wednesday...), which I thought was kind of neat, since it had survived the last ice age and all.

I was in the heart of Acadia.

I'll give a prize to whoever counts the # of Cormorants in here...

And who could forget the memorable experience of having 3(!!!!!) flat tires in <24 hours!!

Our 3rd flat started as a slow leak, so we were able to drive back to Bathurst (~80km from our work site), but as soon as we pulled into the garage she went completely flat. I guess in this case, if you didn't have bad luck, you wouldn't have any luck at all!

And, I almost forgot, here are 3 ebird checklists from the trip:

Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Blog post that never was....

So, last fall Brandon 'the Hulk' Holden, Barbed Wire (Barb Charlton), Mike and I did a trip up to Netitishi Point, situated on James Bay from October 28th-November 11th. I never did a post with pics/vids from the trip, so now that I have some time and since I'm heading back up to James Bay in a few weeks I thought I'd start getting myself pumped up by posting about my last trip up this way, and also share with you people some bits and pieces of our trip.

First off, if you want to see the list(s) of what species we saw, check this link out : Ontbirds Post
Within the Ontbirds post, there are links to our ebird checklists, so you can see exactly what we saw.

Below are some 'general' pics of our trip:

Our first view of the Moose River (on the train)

Our first morning in Moosonee, looking towards Moose Factory

Getting our shit together, literally


The pilot saw a Beluga around here, but I couldn't find it!

Netitishi Point

Brando explaining how high he'll jump, if we find a Great Shearwater! Literally!

At Netitishi looking east towards Hannah Bay


Our cozy quarters. And the 'Hulk' getting angry!

Large sedge meadows were everywhere. This is right after seeing my lifer Gyr!

Big Momma!


Hornemann's Hoary Redpoll!

This was just before the Chopper came. It snowed a good 15cm the night before

And here are two videos that I took, followed by a superb 'cap' video....

Brandon made this pretty slick vid here:

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Recent vids

Just wanted to shout out some vids from some friends doing some environmental work....

John Klymko, from Sackville, New Brunswick

And the Wood brothers from Port Rowan/Burlington, Ontario

And back to the birds....not too much happening, work's been taking me up near Kincardine, and north of Shelburne.

Here are some of my ebird checklists from this week:
Kincardine area:
Shelburne area:
Bayfield area:

That's about it....taker easy

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Frig-it bird

Well the title maybe alittle corny, but the bird wasn't. By now most have heard the news that a Frigatebird was found yesterday morning, just east of Rondeau by Dave Martin and Linda Wladarski. It was originally found around 10am, but soon disappeared. Later yesterday afternoon, it was refound at Rondeau, sitting in a tree on the beach.

It was around 11am when I found out about the bird, but was unfortunately busy near the town of Dundalk working, until 3pm. Talking to the Hulk (Brandon) around this time, revealed that we were both interested in bookin' it down to the Rondeau area IF it was still around. Everything aligned and by 4:50pm we had carpooled at the 401 and Homer Watson in Kitchener and were on our way. We made it to Erieau for 6:30.... and quickly had it in my scope, far to the east flying around getting harassed by gull's and terns.

A pretty crazy rare bird, we didn't get the close-up looks others had, but were satisfied with looks of it flying that the others didn't get. I won't go into too much of the ID asides from the fact that most have agreed thus far that it is a Magnificent, as I suspect others may delve alittle more into the ID aspect. Below are some pics which were taken by Brandon (on my camera), as well as 2 vids, and some close-up shots by "Barbed Wire" (aka Barb Charlton) when the bird was roosting in a tree on the beach.

Crazy far away. You can kind of see the size difference with the gull in the bottom right.

Copyright. Barb Charlton. July 2, 2012
Copyright. Barb Charlton. July 2, 2012
As well, here are two videos of the bird:

Below are the previously accepted (by the OBRC) records of Magnificent Frigatebird (and Frigatebird sp.) in Ontario to date.

Point Edward (Sarnia) - September 28, 1988
Stoney Point - October 28, 1995

Frigatebird sp.:
Mississippi Lake, Lanark County - October 15-30, 1995
Port Elgin - August 1 and 2, 2005
Colchester, Essex County - October 12, 2008

This is the 6th Frigatebird (and likely 3rd Magnificent) in Ontario!

Its interesting to note that an interesting weather event called a 'Derecho' occurred a few days before (June 29th) across Indiana on a line to Washignton DC. Reading abit about this one sounded pretty crazy, with winds being sustained at 75-100 miles/hour over a distance of 450 miles!
I found this on Jen Brumfield's facebook page - don't have a source, so my bad.

That and the crazy heat being recorded in the south-east could have had something to do with this bird showing up in Ont.