Monday, May 04, 2009

May 4, 2009 - Day 2 - Quality not quantity and the reasons for leaving early

Rarely will I be posting the day's news this early but the park was slow today. Now, of course, any day during spring migration has its highlights and it's always great to be out in that fresh Pelee air (we actually commented today in Ander's Field on how great the clover and various grasses smelled in the plains of the central region of the park). A day like today is a good day for catching up with friends, searching out specific species for your May list, and, in all honesty, taking it easy. No sense burning yourself out when 12-13 hour days are right around the corner (I'm aiming for 100+ species days in the week to come).

For these reasons, we called it a day a bit early. The plus side to this? Relaxing in Marianne's house after lunch (a great spinach salad and squash soup) while looking through her pictures from her trip to Florida (there was no limit to my jealosy, particularly while gawking at a picture that shows Roseate Spoonbills, Snowy Egrets, Great Blue Herons, White Ibises, Wood Storks, Little Blue Herons, and Great Egrets all wading in the same area!).

The day did start off well, though. Some new migrants came in that we got to see like Hooded Warbler (gave great views!), a beautiful Yellow-throated Vireo, an incredibly dull first-year female Pine Warbler, Black-throated Blue Warbler, and a nice male Blue-winged Warbler as well. I missed the following: Scarlet Tanager, Common Goldeneye, Common Merganser, and Lesser Black-backed Gull, all of which would have been additions to my May list.

Later in the day, Marianne and I decided to check out the cemetery area and picked up a late Junco (might be my last one of the spring). We also got a Great-crested Flycatcher nearby, also new for my May list, which continues to grow slowly. Later, at the Delaurier house, we got our first Gray-cheeked Thrush and two sunning Five-lined Skinks, Ontario's only native lizard. One dissappointment was that we couldn't find the reported Great Horned Owl nest. I'm going to have to get better directions for this as I'd like to see the nest.

I'm sure I'm forgetting various highlights from the day but my brain is slightly fried while I type this. I'm also getting distracted by The Young and the Restless, which my mom is watching right behind me. Oh Phillis, what have you gotten yourself into now?!

The day's list (lacking due to no Hillman Marsh visit):

Canada Goose
Greater Scaup
Lesser Scaup
Black Scoter
Red-breasted Merganser
Ruddy Duck
Wild Turkey
Double-crested Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Turkey Vulture
Red-tailed Hawk
Spotted Sandpiper
Ring-billed Gull
Herring Gull
Common Tern
Forster's Tern
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Eastern Phoebe
Great Crested Flycatcher
Eastern Kingbird
White-eyed Vireo
Blue-headed Vireo
Warbling Vireo
Blue Jay
American Crow
Purple Martin
Tree Swallow
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Barn Swallow
Black-capped Chickadee
Carolina Wren
House Wren
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Gray-cheeked Thrush
Hermit Thrush
Wood Thrush
American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
Blue-winged Warbler
Nashville Warbler
Northern Parula
Yellow Warbler
Magnolia Warbler
Black-throated Blue Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Pine Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Hooded Warbler
Eastern Towhee
Chipping Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco yesssssss :D
Northern Cardinal
Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Indigo Bunting
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
Orchard Oriole
Baltimore Oriole
Pine Siskin
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow

Total Species: 79

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