Stéphane’s Blog for May 17, 2011

Where are the Birds?

Not at Cabot Head, it seems: today, we detected only 48 species (including 13 of warblers) and banded 18 birds of 10 species. All the species detected had very small numbers of individuals, except for Blue Jays and Chickadees.

Last year, on this day, we had a record-breaking 93 species detected and 203 birds of 32 species banded. So, we can still hope that eventually the weather will turn warm and nice, allowing birds to enjoy the northern Bruce Peninsula. If not, I’m afraid they will some way or another bypass us!

The highlight of the day was an adult Peregrine Falcon. With its heavy and dark barring on the breast, it definitively was not from the subspecies tundrius, the far-north breeder, which means it could a bird exploring the extensive cliffs of the Peninsula for a place to breed. Hope, I’m telling you, is what we have in abundance here (unlike birds).

We also have a male Common Goldeneye hanging around Wingfield Basin. Up to early May, there was a pair of Goldeneye on the basin. I’d like to know where the female went: Could she be in a cavity nearby, on a clutch of eggs? That would be quite something, as no Common Goldeneyes were reported breeding on the Bruce Peninsula during the Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas (2001-2005). Or maybe it is hope again, talking loudly in my ear…