Showing posts from November, 2018

Enthusiastic bather.

Yellow warbler, Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, May 29, 2016.
Another of the warblers that have enjoyed our little stream over the years.
Setophaga petechia
Life can be dangerous for a small bird. Yellow Warblers have occasionally been found caught in the strands of an orb weaver spider’s web.
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They're back.

Snowy owls are back in our area.
We had three in about 2km. I'm sure you will be seeing lots of posts of these beautiful visitors.
Bubo scandiacus
Snowy Owl young may disperse remarkably far from their birthplace. From a single Snowy Owl nest on Victoria Island in the Canadian Arctic, one young bird went to Hudson Bay, one to southeastern Ontario, and one to the far eastern Russian coast. source -
A hidden gem. The Dungeon, Bona Vista peninsula, Newfoundland.
We drove by it 3 or 4 times wondering why there would be a large wooden deck in the middle of nowhere.
Fortunately I saw a postcard of a spectacular scene and asked the clerk where it was.
The answer - about 3 km that-a-way.
We parked at the deck and looked over the edge at the massive hole in the ground.
To give it scale check out the people walking on the far edge. The "Dungeon" formed when the waves began carving two caves into the sedimentary rock on the ocean side. As the caves got deeper they eventually carved out an area that could no longer support the overhead rock. This resulted in the roof collapsing forming the large sinkhole structure and two caves leading to the ocean. Eventually the roofs of the two caves will collapse and form a sea stack.
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Yellow Grosbeak

Yellow Grosbeak, May 16, 2016, Ecuador.
At the first lodge we stayed at near Quito, we had a yellow grosbeak join us for breakfast.
Pheucticus chrysopeplus

Ruby throated hummingbird

Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Sept 14, 2018.
Not a rarity but still a lovely little bird. I like its tiny dangling feet.
Archilochus colubris Scientists place hummingbirds and swifts in the same taxonomic order, the Apodiformes. The name means “without feet,” which is certainly how these birds look most of the time. source -…/Ruby-throated_Hummingbird/

Bay of Fundy tides

These are some of the rocks at Hopewell Rocks. 
They are referred to Flowerpots Rocks, Hopewell Rocks or just The Rocks.
Due to the extreme tidal range of the Bay of Fundy, the base of the formations are covered in water twice a day. However, it is possible to view the formations from ground level at low tide.
The sea levels rise, on average, between 32 and 46 feet (10 and 14 metres).
That's Anne and a park ranger on the sea bottom.
Calliope Hummingbird, Goderich, Ontario, Nov 20 2018.
A lifer for both Anne and myself.

Selasphorus calliope
The Calliope Hummingbird is the smallest bird in the United States. It weighs about one-third as much as the smallest North American warblers and about the same as a ping pong ball.
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Blue winged mountain tanager, Ecuador, March 2016.

One of 138 tanager species listed in the Field Guide for Ecuadorian bird. We get two species in our area.
Anisognathus somptuosus

Dark-eyed junco.

Junco, Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Oct 21 2018. Contemplating a dip in the pond.

Junco hyemalis The Dark-eyed Junco is one of the most common birds in North America and can be found across the continent, from Alaska to Mexico, from California to New York. A recent estimate set the junco’s total population at approximately 630 million individuals. source -
A ground kicker Fox sparrow, Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Nov 15, 2018.
We had two fox sparrows in the yard today searching in the light snow for seeds.
We see these birds occasionally during their migration. Passerella iliaca
Fox Sparrow fossils from the Pleistocene (about 11,000 years ago) have been found in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and at the La Brea tar pits in California.
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Root Cellars of Elliston, Newfoundland.

One of the spots of look for puffins was near Elliston, a small town on the Bona Vista peninsula in Newfoundland. Elliston declared itself the "Root Cellar Capital of the World" in July 2000.
A root cellar is a structure that was built in the days before electricity in order to keep vegetables from freezing in the winter months and to keep its contents cool during the warm summer months.
There are about 130 of these structures left in the Elliston area.
A little bit like hobbit homes.
Pine siskin, Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Nov 13, 2018
This siskin hit a window and sat on the tarp covering our lawn furniture.
After a few minutes it flew away. Spinus pinus
Pine Siskins get through cold nights by ramping up their metabolic rates—typically 40% higher than a “normal” songbird of their size. When temperatures plunge as low as –70°C (–94°F), they can accelerate that rate up to five times normal for several hours. They also put on half again as much winter fat as their Common Redpoll and American Goldfinch relatives.
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Evening grosbeak, Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Nov 10, 2018.

Almost missed them, I was working on the computer and looked out the window and spotted them on a sunflower feeder. Taken through a window.

Coccothraustes vespertinus With their enormous bills, Evening Grosbeaks can crush seeds that are too large for Common Redpolls and Pine Siskins to open. These smaller birds often seek out the grosbeaks and glean the food scraps they leave behind. source -

House wren.

House wren, Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Sept 7, 2018.
Fresh from a bath in the small pond in the yard.
Troglodytes aedon House Wrens nest inside tree holes and nest boxes. As the season progresses their nests can become infested with mites and other parasites that feed on the wren nestlings. Perhaps to fight this problem, wrens often add spider egg sacs into the materials they build their nests from. In lab studies, once the spiders hatched, they helped the wrens by devouring the nest parasites. source -

Red-tailed hawk.

While out looking for the great kiskadee, heard but not seen, I came across this juvenile red-tail in a tree.

Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada, Nov 8, 2018.

Buteo jamaicensis
The Red-tailed Hawk has a thrilling, raspy scream that sounds exactly like a raptor should sound. At least, that’s what Hollywood directors seem to think. Whenever a hawk or eagle appears onscreen, no matter what species, the shrill cry on the soundtrack is almost always a Red-tailed Hawk.
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Great things at Rondeau.

Female Greater Scaup. Rondeau Provincial Park, Nov 6, 2018. High winds made birding difficult, unable to find the great kiskadee but I did find a greater scaup.
Aythya marila
Eggs and ducklings fall prey to predators such as gulls, foxes, and ravens. In some areas, northern pike (fish) also eat ducklings.
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Yellow-rumped warbler.

Yellow-rumped warbler awaiting its turn in the pond, Rondeau Provincial Park, Oct 21, 2018.
Setophaga coronata Yellow-rumped Warblers are perhaps the most versatile foragers of all warblers. They're the warbler you're most likely to see fluttering out from a tree to catch a flying insect, and they're also quick to switch over to eating berries in fall. Other places Yellow-rumped Warblers have been spotted foraging include picking at insects on washed-up seaweed at the beach, skimming insects from the surface of rivers and the ocean, picking them out of spiderwebs, and grabbing them off piles of manure. source -

Colour at the coast.

A roadside harbour with crab pots and lobster traps. There is colour in a lot of unexpected places in Newfoundland.

Great kiskadee.

Great Kiskadee, Rondeau Provincial Park, Nov 2 2018.
As long as it keeps showing up I will keep posting its photo. Such a rare bird and to have it around for this long is a real treat. It is finding enough to eat, frogs are still out and there are lots of berries for it.
Pitangus sulphuratus Food - Great Kiskadees eat both animal prey and fruit. They hunt like a flycatcher, fish like a kingfisher, and forage like a jay. They perch on treetops in open areas, sallying forth to snatch flying insects in midair. They also glean through grass, shrubs, and trees for beetles, grasshoppers, spiders, millipedes, lizards, snakes, and small mice. Near bodies of water, they drop from perches to hover above the water’s surface and pluck prey such as small fish and tadpoles. They also eat fruit from trees, vines, cacti, and sometimes handouts from people. And they’ll boldly steal food from cat and dog dishes. source -

Dark eyed junco with seed, Rondeau Provincial Park April 2017. They are already back this year.
Rainy, miserable November day, over an inch so far, time to go through older photos.
Junco hyemalis The Dark-eyed Junco is one of the most common birds in North America and can be found across the continent, from Alaska to Mexico, from California to New York. A recent estimate set the junco’s total population at approximately 630 million individuals. source -

Red-breasted nuthatch.

Red-breasted nuthatch, Oct 11, 2018, Rondeau Provincial Park. Up in a spruce tree.
Sitta canadensis
Red-breasted Nuthatches migrate southward earlier than many irruptive species. They may begin in early July and may reach their southernmost point by September or October.
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