Monday 9 September 2013

An eye on Humberto & Weekend update

Getting super impatient for a hurricane! We need some strong winds to drive birds towards us from the US coast, or pelagics from the Grand Banks...

There's a tropical storm, Humberto, wandering around far to the South and East of us and may make its way here sometime next week:


Weekend birding was pretty good! Went down the shore both days - with high hopes of high concentrations of vagrants.
Saturday didn't quite reach expectations, but a Bobolink, 5 (!!) Tennessee Warblers, at least 4 Red-eyed Vireos, 1 Mourning Warbler, and some somewhat late Tree Swallows were all nice to see. Very different from Ontario!

I returned to the same area on Sunday. It was raining in the morning, so our motivation to step out the door was fairly low. Once we arrived in Trepassey, we split off into groups. Birds were active and everywhere in the deciduous trees. It wasn't long before we were seeing species that I didn't come across the previous day: Wilson's Warbler, Northern Waterthrush... Hermit Thrush.
Then the major surprise of the day was found,. Anne Hughes rushed over to Lancy and I to say that she saw a Prothonotary Warbler. We rushed back and a tense 5 minutes later I re-found it feeding from the tree tops. There's no mistaking the stunning head and underside colouration. We all got great looks at the bird before it disappeared into the alders.

This was about the 14th record for the island. The latest record was on July 31 of this year on a ship 300km offshore. The last one seen by birders was in 2009...

Later in the arvo, at Long Beach, just as we were leaving 2 shorebirds flew right past me. One of them looked odd so I followed it back to the beach and quickly noticed the long wings, long bill, and more attenuated look of a juvenile peep. A Baird's Sandpiper!

Anyway, with the other vagrants being seen on the Avalon it's obvious that there's many great birds to be found. Just got to get out!

PROW from Pelee: