Spring migration has once again started without me. Fortunately, I've been able to get out birding in some of Toronto's prime locations to witness the first of billions of birds that will make their way across North America on their way towards their breeding grounds to the north. It's difficult to check my email daily and see the reports from my stomping grounds to the south, especially when there are great birds that I might have to miss. Of course, I'm talking about the Mottled Duck, a species that has never before been reported in the Pelee Birding Circle. Now, one is present at Hillman Marsh, being seen by hundreds while I eagerly await getting on the Greyhound to come home for the middle part of May. It's been seen at various locations and I hope hope hope hope hope it will stay for the next week. This is a species I don't want to miss.
For a quick sightings update (I'm doing this by memory so I'll probably miss some), at High Park this week I've noted the following:
- Good numbers of Cormorants are starting to make there way into the area.
- More Great Egrets are around now, displaying their magnificent plumes.
- The common, early migrants have been around for a while now and some of them are already collecting nesting materials including Red-winged Blackbirds, Robins, Grackles.
- Spring migrants include a good number of cheb-ecking Least Flycatchers, Tree and Barn Swallows, Blue-headed Vireo, Golden-crowned and Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Veery, Gray Catbird, Yellow, Yellow-rumped, Black-throated Green, and Blackburnian Warblers, high numbers of White-throated, White-crowned, Song, and Chipping Sparrows, and quite a few striking American Goldfinches.
Not an hour goes by where I don't think about getting home to Pelee. My trip will last from May 9th to May 18th and my goal (perhaps a bit of a challenge with the time constraint) is to get 200 species for the week I'm home. That will not be nearly enough time and the week will go by way too fast but that's what I somehow hope to miraculously manage.