Anyways I tallied my list up, and I'm at 198 all time...with quite a few easy ones to go. Honestly I don't know if this is pathetic, good or amazing....though I think somewhere between the first two?
I've listed the 'top' 5 species I've seen during the winter, totally based on what I think are crazy rare birds to see during the 'winter'....
5. Smith's Longspur - February 5, 2002 Hagersville
|Photograph - Harold Stiver|
|Everyone 'should' be familiar with this thing....|
I think this was the 1st winter record for Ontario, also my lifer.
2. Heermann's Gull - 2000/2001 Toronto
Pretty insane, anyway you look at it (sorry Brando...)
1. Gray Flycatcher - December 2003 - Hagersville area
This has got to be my all time best winter bird that I've seen in Ontario, hands down. Jeff Skevington and company found this in some random wet area, just outside of Hagersville. And luckily enough it stuck around for about a week, allowing most of the active Ontario birding population to twitch. Check out Brandon 'the hulk' Holden's pic out....here
Now, it wouldn't be complete if I didn't include some of my more memorable/favourite finds in the winter, but honestly there aren't too many!!! lol
But anyways, below are two of my favourite finds during the winter listing period:
Yellow-headed Blackbird - December 21, 2007 - Hahn Marsh (Long Point)
I believe this was Long Point's 3rd (?) winter record of YHBL. Definitely something pretty unexpected, and still my only true 'self-found' YHBL in Ontario....
Red-shouldered Hawk - 2003 Hawkesville
I think 'red' is probably my most favourite find in the winter. While its not the 'rarest' thing I've found, its definitely the most interesting. This bird has wintered consecutively in the SAME spot every winter since 2003, making it at least 12 years old (it was a beautiful adult when I first found it). Like the article on ebird about the oldest Northern Shrike on record, my family has become accustomed to it, hoping its doing well and waiting for it every November/December when it has faithfully come back.