Monday, 1 August 2011

Sewage Lagoons

After spending some time near Ottawa this past Saturday I made my way back to Toronto while stopping at several sewage lagoons that I had never been to before.

Naturally, I was hoping to see many shorebirds but unfortunately most (all of them actually) were flooded limiting the habitat needed to attract shorebirds. Nevertheless I did see a few shorebirds.

I started Sunday morning with a brief stop at Shirley's Bay in Ottawa. I had been there last year when I saw no less than 100 shorebirds including a Red-necked Phalarope and a Baird's Sandpiper. Of course I was hoping for something comparable but I was disappointed with only about 15 shorebirds including:
1 Semipalmated Sandpiper
2 Greater Yellowlegs
10 Lesser Yellowlegs
2 Solitary Sandpipers

Shirley's Bay is in DND (Department of National Defense) property so the wildlife there is protected resulting in excessive numbers of deer. Not that they're a real problem there - it's just different to see a group of deer every 50 meters.

Right away at the entrance to the property a family of deer greeted us:

And at the bay a family of four was feeding:

In total we saw 10 deer in less than 1km of walking.

Herons are pretty common as well:

At the Sewage Lagoons throughout Eastern Ontario the same species were present:

Killdeer:
 

juv. Lesser Yellowlegs:

molting ad. Least Sandpiper:

Song Sparrow guarding the lagoon gates:


Probably the most unusual shorebird of the weekend was a juvenile Wilson's Phalarope (with ad. Lesser Yellowlegs to left) at the Amherstview Lagoons:

After checking out the lagoons I made an overnight stop at Presqu'ile Provincial Park - which I'll write about tomorrow!

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