Sunday, June 12, 2016

Birding on First Nations Reserves

That's an odd title. But it's true...they're pretty good for birding; it's just no one goes to them!! This morning I made the exception and took a drive over to Six Nations, just north of Hagersville. I wasn't really sure what to expect (both in terms of birdlife and hospitality), but it was really good.

I got there shortly after 6am this morning, starting at Indian Line and Seneca Road, where I worked my way north, zig-zagging throughout the reserve, ending at Indian Line, one road north of Hagersville.

My birding tour on Six Nations. Note the 2 pin-marks...

The reserve was/is largely like other reserves that I've driven through, with lots of old-field/scrub habitats and good chunks of forest. I had lots of neat stuff throughout the reserve, best were 2 singing male Cerulean Warblers (see map), as well as 4 Yellow-throated Vireo's, 1 Northern Waterthrush, 8 Blue-winged Warblers, and a singing male Purple Finch. Here's my eBird checklist:

I was pretty blown away by the numbers of things like Eastern Towhee's (21), Field Sparrows (22), Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (12), Willow Flycatchers (7), and Eastern Phoebe (12, inc. recently fledged young). While, given all the habitat, I only had 1 Ovenbird. However, having said this, it was quite windy this morning.

All in all a great 2.5hrs! The area screams of great potential (PRAW, YBCH, ACFL, PROW, etc.); I will be surely going back as soon as I can get some time to head there!