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sightings board

Little Gull Photo: Stu Mackenzie

The LPBO Sightings Board summarizes noteworthy bird records in the Long Point area throughout the year. You can contribute to the sightings board by exploring the Long Point Birding Trail, and submitting your sightings to eBird Canada, or by sharing them with us at lpbo@birdscanada.org. Your best source for information about the birds and birding sites around Long Point can be found in A Birding Guide to the Long Point Area by Ron Ridout, available at the LPBO Shoppe and Birds Canada headquarters.

LPBO’s Old Cut Research Station and Visitor Centre is open to the public during spring and fall migration (April to mid-June, and early August to mid-November). Visitors are always welcome and daily birding hikes depart Old Cut one hour after sunrise, and banding demonstrations occur all morning until November 15. Owl monitoring occurs on fair-weather nights from October 1 to November 15.

 

2021 Highlight Reel

Eurasian Wigeon

One first found at the Port Rowan Wetland on March 24. It was observed by dozens of people before it presumably moved to Old Cut March 30.

*Also pictured is an apparent Redhead x Ring-necked Duck hybrid found at Old Cut, March 25 to 30.

Photo: Josh Vandermeulen

Black Vulture

One was photographed just outside of the Long Point Birding Area, north of Houghton Centre on March 14.

Photo: Jeremy Graves

American White Pelican

The same pelican that made an appearance on the Long Point Christmas Bird Count in mid-December persisted into the New Year. The bird was observed by many along the Long Point Causeway until the end of January.

Photo: Graham Wood

Spring 2021 Summary

 

March 9 to March 31, 2021

 

March was relatively mild, with lots of waterfowl and some songbirds on the move. A few firsts of the year made appearances, mostly on schedule, but there were some notably early arrivals. The most interesting birds were all ducks: two odd hybrids and an Eurasian Wigeon.

Migration Monitoring begins at the Old Cut Research Station April 1. The demonstration laboratory and visitor centre will be closed to the public, but the trails will remain open for physically-distanced birding. Birds Canada headquarters’ trails are open to the public but the building is closed.

Highlights:

Snow Goose – One was at Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area March 25-28 (NS, RT; multiple observers).

Cackling Goose – A notable flock of 10 flew over West Quarter Line Road March 12 (AT). Single birds were at the Crown Marsh Trail March 20 (SG) and Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area March 27 (GP). Two were at the Port Rowan Wetland March 21 (SAM).

Trumpeter Swan – Two were at Vittoria Conservation Area March 14-21, an unusual location (AM, GS, MS). At least two birds frequented Long Point’s Inner Bay and were observed from the causeway, the Crown Marsh Trail, Old Cut, and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park (multiple observers).

Tundra Swan – The majority of Tundra Swans moved north early in the month with only a few remaining in the area.

Blue-winged Teal – The first two migrants of the spring were at Birds Canada headquarters March 19 (MAC).

Northern Shoveler – The first push arrived March 10 when dozens appeared along the causeway and in the Crown Marsh.

Eurasian Wigeon – The rarest bird of the reporting period was a Eurasian Wigeon that was first found at the Port Rowan Wetland March 24 (SAM). It was observed by dozens of people before it presumably moved to Old Cut March 30 (LH, LM, RL). This was the first Eurasian Wigeon on record for Old Cut.

Eurasian Wigeon x American Wigeon Hybrid – One was found at Old Cut March 25-30 (RL; multiple observers).

Redhead x Ring-necked Duck Hybrid – This striking hybrid was found at the Port Rowan Wetland March 27-30 (AC).

Photo: Josh Vandermeulen

White-winged Scoter – The first reports of the year were from Outer Long Point Bay and the Tip March 21 (MAC, RR, SAM).

Horned Grebe – The first of the year was on Outer Long Point Bay March 21 (MAC, RR, SAM).

Wilson’s Snipe – The first of the year was a relatively early one at Old Cut March 11 (MAC).

Greater Yellowlegs – The first migrant of the spring was along East Quarter Line Road March 14 (PS).

Little Gull – Observations from across the area included a high count of 15 at Turkey Point March 27 (MiC, ND).

Iceland Gull – One was along County Road 60 March 12 (TL).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – An adult was along the Crown Marsh Trail March 30 (DR).

Common Loon – The first of the year was observed off ‘Old’ Long Point Provincial Park March 27 (IA, EG, NH, WK).

Double-crested Cormorant – Also observed March 27 off ‘Old’ Long Point Provincial Park was the first cormorant of the year (IA, EG, NH, WK).

American Bittern – The first of the year was found along the causeway March 27 (RE).

Great Egret – The first of the year was observed from South Coast Gardens March 28 (GB).

Black Vulture – One was photographed somewhat outside of the Long Point Birding Area, north of Houghton Centre March 14 (JG).

Photo: Jeremy Graves

Osprey – The first of the year was observed along the causeway March 27 (RE).

Golden Eagle – One was reported near Turkey Point March 14 (FE, RE).

Northern Saw-whet Owl – One was found in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 10 (JV).

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker – The first migrant of the spring was at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 30 (EJ).

Common Raven – Sightings across the area, with perhaps the most reliable location being Concession Road 6 through St. Williams Conservation Reserve.

Tufted Titmouse – Widely reported during March from South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point, St. Williams, Backus Woods, Troyer Road, Port Rowan, Old Cut and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park (multiple observers).

Barn Swallow – The first of the year was observed from the Inner Bay viewing platform March 27 (EG, IA, NH).

Purple Martin – The first prospecting males were observed in Port Rowan on March 31 (M. Obs) 

Gray Catbird – An early migrant or perhaps an overwintering bird was in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 29 (EC).

Northern Mockingbird – One continued at the Port Rowan Wetland throughout March (multiple observers). A second bird was at the Rowan Mills Conservation Area March 13 (AM).

Hermit Thrush – An overwintering Old Cut bird was observed periodically throughout the month (MAC; multiple observers). Another was singing during a warm evening March 24 in St. Williams Conservation Reserve (MAC).

Evening Grosbeak – Several small flocks were reported: four in St. Williams Mach 12 (RR), eight at South Coast Gardens March 13, and three at the Turkey Point Conservation Reserve March 16 (LF). There has not been any indication of a large northward movement of Evening Grosbeaks or other winter finches so far this spring.

Common Redpoll – Small numbers remain throughout the area (multiple observers).

Hoary Redpoll – Two were along County Road 60 March 9 (LF).

Red Crossbill – A flock of 28 flew over West Quarter Line Road March 12 (AT). Two flew over the Port Rowan Wetland March 28 (SAM).

White-winged Crossbill – Two flew over ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 17 (GP).

Pine Siskin – Small numbers throughout the area (multiple observers).

Chipping Sparrow – One lingered around the Old Cut feeders from March 7 onward (LL; multiple observers). Additional birds began to appear later in March (multiple observers).

White-crowned Sparrow – One was along Concession Road 1 March 13 (CAF).

Harris’s Sparrow – One continued at a feeder in Port Dover well into March (multiple observers).

Savannah Sparrow – Single birds were reported from Turkey Point, Concession Road 2, Birds Canada headquarters, the Lakeshore Road fields, and Big Creek National Wildlife Area (multiple observers).

Rusty Blackbird – The high count was 45 at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 29 (EC).

Yellow-rumped Warbler – Up to two overwintering birds remained at Old Cut throughout March, and one was even heard singing on warm days (multiple observers). Another was at the Port Rowan Wetland March 25 (SAM).

Pine Warbler – The first of the year was heard along Concession Road 1 March 30 (SAM).

Observers – Isabel Apkarian (IB), Gregor Beck (GB), Ezra Campanelli (EC), Adam Capparelli (AC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Mike Cowlard (MiC), Nancy Douglas (ND), Felix Eckley (FE), Rick Eckley (RE), Lucas Foerster (LF), Christian Friis (CAF), Scott Gillingwater (SG), Ethan Gosnell (EG), Jeremy Graves (JG), Nathan Hood (NH), Lily Hou (LH), Eugene Jankowski (EJ), William Konze (WK), Ryan Leys (RL), Lucas Liu (LL), Tim Lucas (TL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Liam McGuire (LM), Angelique Mori (AM), George Prieksaitis (GP), Ron Ridout (RR), Dorilsa Robinson (DR), Gis Segler (GS), Max Segler (MS), Nancy Smith (NS), Peter Stewart (PS), Rick Thornton (RT), and Joshua Vandermeulen (JV).

Winter 2020-21 Summary

January 7, 2021 to March 9, 2021

 

Winter conditions at Long Point varied from a relatively mild January to a genuinely cold February, and a return to more normal mild conditions come March. The freeze-up didn’t really take hold until February, when almost unbroken ice conditions prevailed all month on the Inner Bay. There were even a few days of partial ice cover off Long Point’s south shore and in Outer Long Point Bay. Aside from a few small patches of moving water, most of the wetlands and inland waters were frozen solid for much of February. March brought a return to warmer daytime temperatures, but chilly nights remained the norm. The first traditional migrants arrived in the first week of March, including swans, American Woodcock, Horned Larks, blackbirds and even some record early Tree Swallows. Great Horned Owls and Bald Eagles are on nests. As usual, the Lakeshore Road fields played host to the more notable geese species. There were a number of noteworthy birds, particularly around bird feeders.

Highlights:

Snow Goose – The first of the year was at Turkey Point January 18 (NS). The second report was of one among a flock of Canada Geese along Lakeshore Road, west of Port Rowan, February 26 (DH). An additional bird was seen from Lion’s Park on the Port Rowan waterfront (SAM), and two were observed at Silver Lake March 3 (MT).

Ross’s Goose – One made the rounds beginning at Silver Lake in Port Dover March 3 (MT), followed by the Lakeshore Road fields March 7 (SAM), and the Long Point causeway March 8 (SH).

Greater White-fronted Goose – 2021 started off well for sightings of this handsome goose. The first of the year was one among thousands of other waterfowl at the mouth of Big Creek January 24 (MAC). The fields along Lakeshore Road hosted most of the observations: four February 14 (KB) and February 25 (AG, LF), and five February 26 (DB, MiC, ND, AT). Other reports were four at Big Creek National Wildlife Area and Gore Road February 21 (EJ, NR, JK, SAM), and four at the Port Rowan Wetland February 26 (SAM). The maximum count was a very impressive 33 at Port Royal March 7 (ABu et al.).

Cackling Goose – There were numerous sightings, mainly mixed with Canada Geese. The first birds of the year were a flock of seven at Silver Lake in Port Dover January 9-25 (MT, AM, RR, MAC). Other observations were three at Big Creek National Wildlife Area January 11 (RR), five on the Long Point causeway February 2 (JK, NR), one along Concession Road 1 February 6 (CF), three at the Port Rowan Wetland February 26 (SAM), one at Port Rowan February 28 followed by three the next day (SAM), four at Birds Canada Headquarters March 2 (SAM), and numerous reports from the Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area-Port Rowan-Lakeshore Road fields area (multiple observers).

Trumpeter Swan – At least three were frequenting ice-free patches of water at the base of the Inner Bay. The first birds of the year were a pair along the Long Point causeway February 6 (AD, MD). There were subsequent observations from the causeway, Birds Canada Headquarters and Lion’s Park in Port Rowan (multiple observers). The high count was three along the causeway March 6-7 (CB, CL, LT).

Tundra Swan – The first migrants joined the overwintering flocks during the last few days of February, and numbers peaked between March 5 and 10. The high count so far has been 2000 at Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area February 28 (EG, NH).

Wood Duck – A few birds overwintered, including four at Port Royal January 19 (RR), one along Concession Road 1 January 29 (CF), and two in Dedrick Creek at Backus Woods February 6-10 (ABi, MAC). Two, likely first migrants, were along the Long Point causeway March 7 (ABu) , and 8 were in Port Rowan March 9 (SAM).

Other Ducks – Numbers of other ducks are slowly rising. Good concentrations of Redhead and Canvasback were found along the Port Rowan waterfront. Mallard, Gadwall, Northern Pintail, American Wigeon and other species began increasing in numbers as soon as March began.

Ring-necked Pheasant – One was near Port Ryerse January 10 (MB).

Sandhill Crane – Once again, Long Point hosted an impressive number of overwintering cranes. There were over 2000 still present in early January (MAC), but numbers seemed to drop to about 1000 by February, and to a few hundred by early March (multiple observers), and 1,600 birds were observed in the area March 8 (TL).

Killdeer – At least two overwintered in Port Rowan and another was along Lakeshore Road (multiple observers). The first migrants began to arrive during the last few days of February. One eager pair was seen copulating and scraping a nest on the positively early date of March 9 at Birds Canada Headquarters (RR).

American Woodcock – The first migrants of the year were reported displaying near St. Williams March 8 (DO).

Little Gull – At least one persisted throughout the winter between St. Williams and the Long Point Causeway (multiple observers). The high count for the year so far was three at Turkey Point March 7 (AM).

Iceland Gull – Sightings included two different birds at Port Dover January 17 and 23 (MJ, RR), and one along Concession Road A February 21 (SAM).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – A handsome adult was at Turkey Point March 3 (TL).

Great Black-backed Gull – There was a notable count of 10 at the Inner Long Point Bay viewing stand January 1 (MAC).

American White Pelican – The same pelican that made an appearance on the Long Point Christmas Bird Count in mid-December persisted into the New Year. The first sighting was at the St. William’s Inner Long Point Bay viewpoint January 1 (GP). It remained there until January 9 (multiple observers) before relocating to the Long Point causeway, until the end of January (multiple observers).

American White Pelican

Turkey Vulture – There were numerous overwintering birds (multiple observers).

Golden Eagle – There were at least two, and probably three birds in the area, with sightings spread between Gore Road and Port Ryerse. Two were observed together along East Quarter Line Road February 6 (AT).

Red-shouldered Hawk – A few persisted throughout the winter, most notably one that was consistently seen between St. Williams and Forestville (multiple observers).

Snowy Owl – There was at least one bird seen from Port Rowan down to Long Point in early January. The first sighing was January 1 along the Long Point causeway (AA, HP, KB). There were no reports of Snowys in February or early March.

Long-eared Owl – The only record for the winter was of one in a Port Rowan backyard March 1 (IT, RT).

Short-eared Owl – Single birds were reported from Lakeshore Road January 2 (DL), Port Rowan January 4 (SAM), Big Creek National Wildlife Area January 23 (MAC), the Long Point causeway January 30 (LL), and Concession Road A February 20 (MH). Two were at the Port Rowan Wetlands February 26 (SAM).

Northern Saw-whet Owl – One was at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point February 2 (GB, KK), and another in the New Long Point Provincial Park March 10 (JVa).

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker – There was an over-wintering bird at Backus Heritage Conservation Area January 1 (ES).

Red-headed Woodpecker – Always scarce in winter, one was reported along Charlotteville Road 2 February 15 (Anonymous Observer).

Eastern Phoebe – The first of the year was reported in Port Rowan March 9 (SAM).

Common Raven – Scattered observations ranged from West Quarter Line Road to the Turkey Point Conservation Reserve (multiple observers).

Horned Lark – The first notable push of migrants was right on time, in mid-February (multiple observers).

Tree Swallow – There was a rash of record early sightings, the first being a single bird along East Quarter Line Road March 3 (EG). Two more individuals were reported the following day at Port Rowan (SAM) and the Barrett-Sanderson Tract (AM).

Ruby-crowned Kinglet – One was reported in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 6 (ES). This bird may have relocated to Old Cut as one was found there February 2 (SAM). That bird persisted into March through some very wintry weather (multiple observers).

Marsh Wren – A few birds overwintered. There was one at Silver Lake January 1 and 25 (MT). Up to two were in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 3-9 (ES, SAM, RR).

Gray Catbird – Overwintering birds were reported from ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 3-6 (ES), Old Cut January 20 (MAC) and February 21 (SAM), South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point February 12 (GB, KK), and along Troyer Road February 15-18 (PG, TG).

Hermit Thrush – Numerous overwintering birds were reported from West Quarter Line Road to Turkey Point and south to Old Cut and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park (multiple observers).

American Pipit – One was found on the Long Point causeway January 9 (DL).

Evening Grosbeak – Last fall’s movement of Evening Grosbeaks was the fourth largest on record at LPBO, but very few of those birds remained throughout the winter. There were only a handful of reports so far in 2021: two were at Turkey Point Provincial Park January 3 (SAM), one was along Troyer Road January 8-9 (PG, TG), two were in St. Williams January 17 (EG), one was along Concession Road A February 26 (DB), and South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point hosted three January 16 and 24 February 14 (GB, KK).

Purple Finch – Fairly uncommon this winter. There were sightings from Gore Road to Port Dover, including a high count of seven January 16 (GB, KK).

Common Redpoll – Fairly common and widespread this winter. Large flocks included 300 south of Pinegrove January 7 (EG), 250 near Spooky Hollow January 10 (RR), and 200 near Vittoria January 29 (MT).

Hoary Redpoll – This winter has proved to be one of the best for finding Hoarys in many years. The first of the year were two birds along Concession Road 2 February 3 (SAM). Other sightings were one along Dancey Side Road near St. Williams February 10 (AT) and February 19 (DL), and two in Port Rowan February 18 (SAM).

Red Crossbill – There were widespread sightings of single birds and small flocks from West Quarter Line Road to Port Dover (multiple observers), including a high count of 21 near the St. Williams Conservation Reserve January 9 (TGr). Perhaps the most notable observation though came from just outside the official boundaries of the Long Point Birding Area, at Trout Creek Nature Reserve. A flock of crossbills was frequently reported there in January and February. Based on sonogram analysis, at least three “call types” were present January 30. A flock of 19 birds had 15 Type 10s, three Type 2s, and one rare Type 4 (TL).

White-winged Crossbill – While scarcer than Red Crossbills,observations included 13 at Backus Heritage Conservation Area January 29 (MF), eight in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park February 2 (JK, NR), two at St. Williams Conservation Reserve January 27 (LFo) and three there February 17 (LFo), and numerous observations at Old Cut including a high count of 35 February 2 (MAC, SAM).

Pine Siskin – Last fall’s movement of Pine Siskins was by far the largest on record at LPBO. Some siskins remained in the area over winter but not in huge numbers.

Lapland Longspur – Seemingly more common during the early part of 2021 than in some years. There were observations from Gore Road to East Quarter Line Road (multiple observers), with a high count of seven at the latter location February 7 (MAC).

Snow Bunting – There was a high count of 1500 at the Frank Miller Nature Reserve February 7 (RR).

Chipping Sparrow – Two overwintered at a feeder along West Quarter Line Road January 3-February 9 (AT, TM). One was also reported at the Old Cut feeders February 19 (HG).

Field Sparrow – There were a few overwintering birds from the Wilson Tract to Turkey Point (multiple observers).

Fox Sparrow – Overwintering birds were at Backus Heritage Conservation Area January 30 (SAM) and South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point January 31-February 21 (GB, KK).

White-crowned Sparrow – There were a handful of overwintering birds, including two near Vittoria January 29 (MT) and February 15 (JV), one along Concession Road A February 10 (HG), one at Silver Hill February 13-15 (JW), and one along St. John’s Road west of Port Dover February 20 (JK, NR).

Harris’s Sparrow – One was at feeder in Port Dover February 10-27 (PS; multiple observers).

Savannah Sparrow – There were at least three overwintering birds. One was first found along Lakeshore Road January 2 (DL; multiple observers). Up to five were along Concession Road A January 21 onward (SAM; multiple observers). One last bird was along East Quarter Line Road February 20 (KB).

Eastern Towhee – Overwintering birds were at South Coast Gardens January 16 (GB, KK), Concession Road 2 at Big Creek February 12 (RR), and along Troyer Road February 19-23 (PG, TG).

Eastern Meadowlark – The first report of the year came from Concession Road A (JK, NR). Additional wintering birds were found at the Lakeshore Road fields February 21 (AM) and March 7 (SAM) & 8 (TL), and Old Cut February 25 (PD).

Rusty Blackbird – There were a few overwintering birds, including a high count of 37 along Troyer Road February 27 (PG, TG).

Common Yellowthroat – One was in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 3 (ES).

Yellow-rumped Warbler – Overwintering birds were found at Concession Road 1 January 2-30 (CF), ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 6 (ES), Backus Heritage Conservation Area January 30 (SAM), and Old Cut February 28-March 8 (MAC, SAM).

Dickcissel – One spent a few days at a feeder near Backus Heritage Conservation Area January 23-February 7 (MBr et al.).

Observers – Aaron Allensen (AA), Cody Bassindale (CB), Gregor Beck (GB), Amanda Bichel (ABi), Mike Boone (MB), Kathryn Boothby (KB), David Britton (DB), Matt Brock (MBr), Alvan Buckley (ABu), Ken Burrell (KB), Adam Capparelli (AC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Mike Cowlard (MiC), Bob Curry (BC), Anna Dickinson (AD), Mark Dickinson (MD), Parker Dirks (PD), Nancy Douglas (ND), Myles Falconer (MF), Lucas Foerster (LFo), Liv Frid (LF), Christian Friis (CF), Paula Gent (PG), Ted Gent (TG), Eric Giles (EG), Henry Giles (HG), Ethan Gosnell (EG), Terry Groh (TGr), Amanda Guercio (AG), Megan Hiebert (MH), Nathan Hood (NH), Diane Hopkins (DH), Sandra Hawkins (SH), Eugene Jankowski (EJ), Mourad Jabra (MJ), Kevin Kavanagh (KK), James Kennerley (JK), Denis Lepage (DL), Catriona Leven (CL), Lucas Liu (LL), Tim Lucas (TL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Taylor Marshall (TM), Angelique Mori (AM), David Okines (DO), George Prieksaitis (GP), Hailey Priest (HP), Nicole Richardson (NR), Ron Ridout (RR), Nancy Shaw (NS), Evan Sinclair (ES), Glenda Slessor (GS), Peter Stewart (PS), Liam Thorne (LT), Adam Timpf (AT), Matt Timpf (MT), Ilse Tozer (IT), Rory Tozer (RT), Josh Vandermeulen (JVa), John Vanrooy (JV), Julia Wever (JW).

 

 

 

 

November 7, 2020 to January 4, 2021

 

Early Winter Update and Christmas Bird Count Summary

Winter eased into the Long Point region, which has yet to experience any significant snowfall or deep freeze. Many of the ponds and protected bodies of water have at least some ice cover, but most of Long Point Bay and certainly Lake Erie proper remained ice free for the entire period. As usual, many lingering landbirds could be found in protected areas, particularly along the lakeshore. Impressive numbers of Tundra Swans passed through early in the period but had thinned out by year’s end. Sandhill Cranes continued to be an impressive local spectacle, and waterfowl remain abundant.

The 60th Long Point Christmas Bird Count (CBC) took place on 19 December. Forty-seven local birders counted a remarkable 73,759 birds of 115 species. This is the second highest species total (114 in 2016), and third highest total number of birds counted in the counts history. The long-term average is 28,014 individuals of 102 species, and the recent decade average of 38,998 of 104 species. The average number of birds counted at Long Point has grown consistently over the decades from 10,375 in the 1960’s to 38,998 in 2010-2020. Since the count began in 1961, volunteers have contributed more than 8,500 hours counting more than 1.5 million birds of 193 species.

The 34th Woodhouse CBC took place on 20 December covering areas north east of Long Point.  The count tallied 94 species of 18,869 individuals which is the 3rd highest species total ever, and the highest since the record of 99 was set in 2006. There were two additional count week species recorded on the day before the count: a Snow Goose had been hanging around in the park in downtown Simcoe, and an American White Pelican was briefly seen off Port Ryerse.  Two new species were recorded for the count: 1 Marsh Wren at Silver Lake, 1 Rose-breasted Grosbeak coming to a feeder in Simcoe.

 

Highlights:

Snow Goose – There was a smattering of Snow Geese throughout the reporting period, including two flying over Port Rowan November 12 (DT), three at the Birds Canada headquarters November 20 (SAM), two over West Quarter Line Road December 5 (AT, MT), one at Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area November 27 (KB), one in the fields along Lakeshore Road, west of Port Rowan December 13 (KB), and two over Big Creek December 19 (AT, MT, RR).

Ross’ Goose – A rather uncommon but somewhat regular winter visitor to Long Point: two were observed from the Turkey Point Marsh Overlook on Front Road, east of St. Williams November 8 (SL, WL).

Cackling Goose – Three were present at the Port Rowan Wetlands, November 18-19 (EG, SAM). A single bird was found at Lee Brown WMA December 19 (SL, WL).

Trumpeter Swan – At least three birds remained in the Inner Bay throughout November with sightings at Old Cut on the 9th and 27th (MAC, RL), and the Crown Marsh Trail on November 29 (AM).

Tundra Swan – There was a high count of 3000 going to roost at Big Creek National Wildlife Area December 3 (AB, MAC), and a grand total of 4425 December 19 (multiple observers).

Wood Duck – A late bird at Port Royal December 29 (DB).

Mallard – Mallard doesn’t usually make the sightings board, but it is worth noting the record-high count of 9038 December 19 (multiple observers).

Northern Pintail – A late bird was along the Long Point causeway January 2 (MAC).

Redhead – An impressive 20,000 were counted December 19 (multiple observers). While not an unusual count in late October or November, numbers of Redhead and many other ducks tend to thin out by mid-December. Open water conditions meant that many species, such as the aforementioned Mallard, were in great abundance during the final weeks of 2020.

Black Scoter – One flew past the Tip with a flock of White-winged Scoters November 24 (MAC, SAM).

Red-necked Grebe – A species not commonly observed from the mainland, one was off the Birds Canada headquarters November 23 (AB, MAC).

Virginia Rail – Late-staying birds were flushed from the ‘New” Long Point Provincial Park wetlands during phragmites control operations throughout Nov and early December (AT).

Sandhill Crane – Long Point has become a major overwintering location for several thousand cranes. A survey conducted around New Year’s counted approximately 7000 individuals, mainly concentrated in the fields west of Port Rowan and along the causeway, including Big Creek National Wildlife Area (RW, DS).

Killdeer – Two hardy birds remained at Lion’s Park on the Port Rowan waterfront through early January (multiple observers).

Dunlin – One was at Turkey Point (TL) and two were along Long Point’s south shore out towards Breakwater (MB, SAM) December 19.

Hudsonian Godwit – A lone bird stayed at Turkey Point until at least November 22 (multiple observers).

Wilson’s Snipe – A few late birds remained into December, the latest at Old Cut Dec 16 (MAC).

Little Gull – Low numbers, probably only a few individuals, were observed around the Inner Bay and at Turkey Point November through January (multiple observers).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at the Tip November 9 (MAC, RL).

Glaucous Gull – One was at Turkey Point December 19 (PB). First and Second-cycle individuals were at Port Dover Harbour December 20 and 31 (TL, RR).

Arctic Tern – A rarity at Long Point, but there were at least two at the Tip November 8 (SAM).

Forster’s Tern – A late bird was at the Tip November 8 (MAC, RL, SAM).

American White Pelican – One was observed from the Turkey Point Marsh Overlook on Front Road November 8 (ML). Possibly the same bird was at Turkey Point December 19 (TL), and subsequently observed along the lakeshore between Port Rowan and St. Williams into January (multiple observers). This was a new species for the Long Point and Woodhouse CBCs.

Least Bittern – Record late individuals were flushed from different parts of the ‘New” Long Point Provincial Park wetlands and Big Creek NWA along Hastings Dr. during phragmites control operations December 3, 8, 16, 17 (APT).

Golden Eagle – Sightings were fairly scarce this fall. One was observed from the Turkey Point Marsh Overlook November 8 (ML). Another was along West Quarter Line Road December 5 (APT, MTT).

Northern Goshawk – One was just east of Port Royal December 4 (AB, MAC), while another was near Turkey Point the following day (FE, RE). One was observed at Turkey Point on the December 19 CBC.

Red-shouldered Hawk – One bird remained in the vicinity of St. Williams from December 19 to January 5 (EG, SAM).

Snowy Owl – Two were found along the Inner Bay during a boat trip to the Tip December 10 (MAC, MB, SAM). At least two were observed regularly throughout December and into January along the causeway (multiple observers).

Short-eared Owl – Numerous sightings of single birds including the causeway November 8 (GP), Lakeshore Road fields December 5 (RaRo, DL), Port Rowan December 25 (LPBO), ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park December 28 (MAC), and Port Rowan Wetland January 4 (SAM).

Red-headed Woodpecker – One was at Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area November 11 (RR). Another was at Old Cut November 13 (DC, RB).

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker – One was along Concession Road 1 at Big Creek December 18 (CF).

Common Raven – Singles were observed at St. Williams December 9near Turkey Point December 28 (GB, KK), and one east of Port Rowan on January 3 (SAM).

Tufted Titmouse – Eleven were counted December 19, a CBC record number. Most were found along the lakeshore (multiple observers).

Red-breasted Nuthatch – After the big migration of nuthatches this past fall, it’s no surprise that a new record high count was made December 19, with 223 (multiple observers). See Dunn 2019. The Auk, Volume 136, Issue 2, 1 April 2019, ukz008, https://doi.org/10.1093/auk/ukz008 for an interesting synopsis of RBNU movements in the continent.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet – There were a few lingering individuals, including one near Turkey Point December 19 (multiple observers).

Gray Catbird – Six lingering birds were counted December 19 (multiple observers). One was found in ‘New” Long Point Provincial Park January 3 (ES).

Northern Mockingbird – One was at the Port Rowan Wetlands December 12 (ED).

Marsh Wren – Lingering birds were found as late as January 3 at Silver Lake in Port Dover (MT) and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park (SAM, ES).

Hermit Thrush – As usual, a few birds had remained in the area into the New Year, including one at Old Cut and one in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 2 (MAC).

American Pipit – An excellent count of 41 was made at the ‘Onion Fields’ December 19 (AB, MAC, CL, RL).

Red Crossbill – Small flocks or single birds were reported throughout November and December (multiple observers).

Hoary Redpoll – One was found in a flock of Common Redpolls along Turkey Point Rd. December 19 (AC JL, KC).

Other Winter Finches – Most of the winter finches that moved through in abundance during October and November have departed. Small numbers of Evening Grosbeaks, White-winged Crossbills, Common Redpolls and Pine Siskins were reported throughout the area.

Lapland Longspur – Migrants flew over Old Cut November 12 (MAC). Overwintering birds were reported along Concession Road 1 December 18 (CF) and near Port Dover December 20 (TL).

Grasshopper Sparrow – One was observed at the bottom of West Quarter Line Rd near Wilson’s Tract in Walsingham December 27 (APT).

Savannah Sparrow – One was along Lakeshore Road west of Port Rowan January 2 (DL).

Harris’s Sparrow – One was reported from Port Dover December 4 (MT).

Pine Warbler – One was found in Turkey Point Provincial Park December 19 (PB).

Common Yellowthroat – One was observed at Big Creek on the December 19 CBC, and a lingering bird was in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park as late as January 3 (SAM, ES).

Rose-breasted Grosbeak – One was observed in Port Dover December 7 and continued through December 20 CBC (MTT, APT).

Dickcissel – One was at a St. Williams yard November 7 (JM).

Observers: Gregor Beck (GB), Amanda Bichel (AB), Kathryn Boothby (KB), Michael Bradstreet (MB), Richard Brault (RB), David Britton (DB), Peter Burke (PB), Ken Burrell (KB), Kyle Cameron (KC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Andrew Couturier (AC), Diane Croteau (DC), Erica Dunn (ED), Felix Eckley (FE), Rick Eckley (RE), Christian Friis (CF), Eric Giles (EG), Kiah Jasper (KJ), Kevin Kavanagh (KK), Sarah Lamond (SL), William Lamond (WL), James Lees (JL), Markus Legzdins (ML), Denis Lepage (DL), Chris Leys (CL), Ryan Leys (RL), Tim Lucas (TL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Jon McCracken (JM), Angelique Mori (AM), George Prieksaitis (GP), Raymond Roth (RaRo), Ron Ridout (RR), Denby Sadler (DS), Evan Sinclair (ES), Adam Timpf (APT), Matt Timpf (MTT), Doug Tozer (DT), Ross Wood (RW), and Long Point Bird Observatory staff (LPBO).

2020 Highlight Reel

Grasshopper Sparrow

One was observed at the bottom of West Quarter Line Rd near Wilson’s Tract in Walsingham December 27 (Adam Timpf)

Photo: Adam Timpf

American White Pelican

One was observed at Turkey Point December 19 (Tim Lucas), and subsequently observed along the lakeshore between Port Rowan and St. Williams into January (multiple observers).

Photo: Tim Lucas

Summer Tanager

One was at the town of St. Williams on October 30 (Ron Ridout)

Photo: Ron Ridout

White-winged Crossbills

A few banded at Old Cut November 2 (M. Obs.).

Photo: LPBO

Hudsonian Godwit

One was observed on and off throughout the period at Turkey Point Beach on Ordance Dr. (M. Obs.).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

White-eyed Vireo

One was banded at the Tip October 20 (LPBO).

Photo: LPBO

Hudsonian Godwits

Two were observed at Turkey Point Beach October 14 (Sarah and William Lamond) and continued through October 17 (M.Obs). They were joined by a third bird October 18 (Adam Timpf).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Long-billed Dowitcher

One was at Turkey Point Marina October 2 (Jay Solanki) and continued to at least October 9 (Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Snow Goose

The first three migrants of the fall flew over Old Cut October 4 (Amanda Bichel, Michael Bradstreet). A single bird was at Turkey Point Marina October 9 (Michael Bradstreet, Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Acadian Flycatcher

A very late bird was banded at the Tip October 3 (Kyle Cameron, Ryan Leys). Fall records of Acadians at Long Point are few and far between, and this may be our first October record.

Photo: LPBO

Trumpeter Swans

Six were counted at Big Creek National Wildlife Area September 12-14 (Rob Woods), one was observed at Bluff Bar (Ryan Leys), and 7 flew over Old Cut on October 9 (Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Warblers

Warblers – Late and lingering Ovenbird, American Redstart, Black-and-white, Cape May, Blackburnian and Yellow Warbler were all recorded over the past week, mainly from Old Cut and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park.

Black-throated Blue Warbler Photo: Stu Mackenzie

American Golden-Plovers

Numerous individuals observed at Old Cut, the Tip and Bluff Bar throughout the period. There was a high of 6 at Old Cut September 26 (LPBO).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

American Avocet

One was observed on the north side of the Causeway at Big Creek September 15-16 (Adam Timpf)

Photo: Adam Timpf

Red Knots

A flock of 8 were observed at Turkey Point beach on September 7. Only one young remained September 12. (Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Connecticut Warbler

One was banded at Old Cut September 5, and Breakwater September 6 and recaptured September 9.

Photo: LPBO

Golden-winged Warbler

One was banded at Breakwater September 3, which remained until September 5.

Photo: LPBO

Red-necked Phalarope

One young bird was observed about 1km offshore of the Tip September 1 (Stu Mackenzie, Mark Conboy)

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Northern Waterthrush (leucistic)

A leucistic bird affectionately known as ‘Isabelle’ was banded at Breakwater August 28 and persisted until September 2.

Photo: LPBO

Yellow-headed Blackbird

One adult male was observed at Big Creek NWA August 28, and a female was observed at the Tip September 5-6 (Kyle Cameron, LPBO)

Photo: Joeli Robertson

Buff-breasted Sandpiper

One was discovered at Turkey Point August 21 (Greg Stuart), and continued until at least August 23 (Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Red Knots

Two young were discovered at Turkey Point August 21 (Steve Moore), and remained until at least August 24 (Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

swallows

The Long Point swallow roost began taking shape in mid-July with as many as 100,000 individuals swarming Big Creek NWA and surrounding wetlands at dusk.Peak estimates so far occurred August 8 with more than 275,000 birds at Big Creek – the majority are Bank followed by Tree, Barn and mere thousands of Purple Martin.

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Willet

One was observed at Turkey Point August 17 and continued to August 21 (Steve Moore).

Photo: Dan MacNeal

American White Pelican

A lone bird circled briefly over Port Rowan June 4 before disappearing to parts unknown (Ryan Leys, Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Summer Tanager

One was at Old Cut June 3 (Ryan Leys).

Photo: Ryan Leys

Yellow-breasted Chat

One was banded at Breakwater May 27, and another was observed there the following day (Alex Israel & Brendan Boyd).

Photo: Alex Israel & Brendan Boyd

Snowy Egret

The first one in 15 years graced the Tip with its elegance May 26 (Mark Conboy, Matt Timpf, Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Mark Conboy

Summer Tanagers

Two were at Breakwater May 25 (AIex Israel & Brendan Boyd).

Photo: AIex Israel & Brendan Boyd

Loggerhead Shrike

The second one in as many years was observed at the Tip May 25 and banded on May 26 (Mark Conboy, Matt Timpf, Stu Mackenzie).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Kentucky Warbler

One delighted many birders in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park May 24 (Ross Wood, Graham Wood, M. Obs.)

Photo: Graham Wood

Summer Tanager

One young male was in Port Ryerse May 17-19 (Paul and Lou Jean MacNeal)

Photo: Paul and Lou Jean MacNeal

American Avocet

Two were observed at Turkey Point beach May 2 (Nathan Hood).

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

Willet

One observed at Turkey Point beach April 16 (Adam Timpf).

Photo: Adam Timpf

Ruff

One orange male was observed along Concession A, and later at the James Berry Drain on Lakeshore Rd. on May 3 (Adam Timpf)

Photo: Adam Timpf

Eurasian Wigeon

One was found at the Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area March 17 (George Prieksaitis, Jamie Fowler, and Madelaine Tortolo). It was joined by another March 22 (Ethan Gosnell). They lingered in the area until the end of the month (multiple observers).

Photo: Ethan Gosnell

White-winged Dove

One was present at a feeder on Concession A from May 5-10 (Kerrie and Steve Wilcox)

Photo: Stu Mackenzie

2020 Banding Totals

7,041 banded

221 species detected

 

Old Cut

Breakwater

The Tip

11,390 birds banded

230 species detected

OBSERVATORY TOTAL

Fall 2020 Summary

October 19 to November 6, 2020

Long Point hosts more birds at the end of October than any other time of year. The point’s wetlands, Inner and Outer Bay are teeming with tens of thousands of waterfowl, temperate migrant songbirds and raptors abound during the right conditions, and millions of Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles forage across the countryside and concentrate occupy massive roosts. Winter finches, primarily Pine Siskins, have continued to move en masse, and we’re experiencing the greatest flight of Evening Grosbeak since 1990. While diversity overall continues to wane, the final days of October and beginning of November always provide a few late season specialties.

 

Highlights:

Snow Goose – Single birds were at Turkey Point October 20-27 (HG,RS) and the Coves (TL) October 31. Three flew over the Turkey Point Conservation Reserve October 29 (EG). A flight of 170 was observed over South Walsingham on October 29 which is unprecedented for this region (APT).

Trumpeter Swan – Up to six were observed at Old Cut October 25-26 (LG, LH). Six more were observed at Old Cut October 29 (LPBO).

Redhead – Morning flyovers at Old Cut ranged from several hundred to over 10,000 (LPBO).

Black Scoter – There were a handful of observations from the Tip: 7 October 21 (RL), 1 October 25 (RL), 2 October 27 (RL, SAM), and 1 October 28 (ZK).

Red-necked Grebe – Three were observed off the Tip October 25 (RL). One was on Outer Long Point Bay October 31 (SAM).

Virginia Rail – A somewhat late bird was at the Crown Marsh Trail October 25.

American Golden-Plover – It has been a good fall for sightings of this uncommon migrant. Five were at Port Rowan October 21 (SAM). Up to three were in the fields along Lakeshore Road October 29-31 (multiple observers), one was at the Turkey Point Marina October 24, and 4 were observed along the shoreline just west of Turkey Point November 1 (SAM).

Semipalmated Plover – A late migrant was at Big Creek National Wildlife Area October 30 (RS), and one at Turkey Point November 6 (MSWB).

Hudsonian Godwit – One continued at the Turkey Point Marina through November 5 (multiple observers). Another bird was in the fields along Lakeshore Road October 29 through October 31 (multiple observers).

Long-billed Dowitcher – Two continued at the Turkey Point Marina through October 25 (multiple observers).

White-rumped Sandpiper – A late migrant was at the Crown Marsh October 30 (PG, TG).

Solitary Sandpiper – A late migrant flew over Old Cut October 30 (APT).

Greater Yellowlegs – One was banded at the Tip October XX (LPBO). This is only the 7th ever banded at LPBO. The last was in 1993.

Parasitic Jaeger – Jaegers frequented the Tip with one October 19 (LG), one October 20 (RL) and three October 23 (RL).

Red-throated Loon – Observed nearly daily at the Tip through the end of October (LPBO). Three were observed at Old Cut November 2 (MAC).

Little Gull – Two were observed at the Tip October 19 (MAC). A high count of 10 were observed at Turkey Point (MB).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was at the Tip October 25-27 (RL).

Cattle Egret – One flew over Old Cut October 27 (MAC).

Black-crowned Night-Heron – One was observed along the Long Point causeway October 21.

Golden Eagle – Two flew over Old Cut and one over the Tip October 27 (LPBO, ZK). One was at the Port Rowan Wetlands October 30 (RS). Single birds were observed at Old Cut November 1 (MAC), the Coves (SAM) and West Quarter Line Road (AT) November 2.

Northern Goshawk – Single birds passed over Old Cut (LG, MAC) and the Tip October 28 (RL, ZK). One other bird was at the Coves November 2 (SAM).

Northern Saw-whet Owl – Excellent movement the night of October 24 with 44 banded at Old Cut and 37 at the Tip (LPBO).

Blue-headed Vireo – A late migrant was banded at Old Cut November 3 (LPBO).

White-eyed Vireo – One was banded at the Tip October 20 (LPBO).

Red-eyed Vireo – A late migrant was banded at the Tip October 23 (LPBO).

Northern Shrike – The first migrants of the fall were at the Coves (SAM) and Old Cut (MAC, ZK) November 2. Another was observed at Old Cut November 3 (AW, MAC).

Common Raven – One was at the Port Rowan Wetlands October 28 (EHD).

Tufted Titmouse – One was at the Birds Canada headquarters in Port Rowan November 5 (HG).

Grey Catbird – A late bird was lingering at Old Cut through November 5 (MAC).

Swainson’s Thrush – One late bird lingered at Old Cut through November 5 (LPBO).

Wood Thrush – A late bird was at Old Cut October 27 (LPBO).

American Robin – A significant flight of ~10,000 was observed over South Walsingham on October 31 (APT). 

Bohemian Waxwing – Four were in a St. William’s backyard October 31 (JDM).

Evening Grosbeak – This banner fall for Evening Grosbeaks continued with counts at Old Cut in excess of 50 birds on some days (LPBO). Reports from feeders and woodlots across the area continued throughout the first week of November. A high of 63 were observed at The Coves November 2 (SAM).

Common Redpoll – The first migrants of the fall were the six birds that flew over the Coves November 2 (SAM). One was along West Quarterline Road (AT) and nine were in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park (BH) November 3.

Hoary Redpoll – Exceedingly rare at Long Point, one flew over ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park November 3 (BH).

White-winged Crossbill – Daily sightings at Old Cut of up to two dozen birds (LPBO), with additional observations at the Coves (TL) and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park (BH). Three birds were banded at Old Cut November 2. LPBO has only banded 18 previously, 11 of those in 2012.

Red Crossbill – A flock of 15 flew over Old Cut October 28 (MAC). One flew over ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park November 3 (BH).

Lapland Longspur – The first migrants of the fall flew over the Coves October 31 (TL); two more were there November 2 (SAM).

Snow Bunting – The first migrants of the fall were at the Tip October 27 (SAM, ZK).

Clay-coloured Sparrow – One was at the Tip October 23 (LG).

Nelson’s Sparrow – Two were at the Tip October 21 (LG).

Baltimore Oriole – A late bird was along West Quarterline Road November 2 (APT).

Nashville Warbler – A late bird was along West Quarterline Road November 4 (APT).

Common Yellowthroat – A late bird was banded at Old Cut November 6 (AW, MAC, ZK).

Summer Tanager – One female was observed in St. Williams October 30 (RR).

Observers: Michael Bradstreet (MSWB), Mark Conboy (MAC), Erica Dunn (EHD), Paula Gent (PG), Ted Gent (TG), Eric Giles (EG), Henny Giles (HG), Leanne Grieves (LG), Brandon Holden (BH), Larry Hubble (LH), Zach Kahn (ZK), Ryan Leys (RL), Tim Lucas (TL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Jon McCraken (JDM), Ron Ridout (RR), Richard Skevington (RS), Adam Timpf (APT), Amy Wilson (AW) and Long Point Bird Observatory staff (LPBO).

 

October 7 to 18, 2020

 

Migration has been full-on over the past week with great movements through the area. Waterfowl numbers are building on Long Point’s Inner and Outer Bays, shorebirds continue to provide some excellent treats in local haunts, and many later songbird migrants are massing. One of the most remarkable spectacles this time of year is the ‘River of Blackbirds’ which is reaching its peak. Every evening millions of Common Grackles, Red-winged Blackbirds and assorted others wind their way to Long Point’s marshes.

 

AMAZING RECOVERY ALERT! A Purple Finch banded at the Tip of Long Point by Jean-Daniel Fiset on May 1, 2017 was recovered at a bird feeder near Peterborough, Ontario. It just happened to be the feeder of past LPBO Coordinator Mike Burrell! Can you guess how Mike spent his afternoon? LPBO banded 45 PUFI in 2017, and has banded 2,045 since 1960. This is only the 4th Purple Finch recovery! Even this limited data gives ya great insight into the migration patterns of Purple Finch. There is a strong tendency overall of birds moving from the NE toward the Midwest and mid latitude eastern states. Photo: Mike Burrell

Highlights:

Snow Goose – One was observed off Turkey Point Beach October 10 (CL, CB), and again Oct 16-17 ( CC, AD, MN, RP).

Redhead – Small flights (2000-6000) are beginning to accumulate in Long Point Bay. They can be observed somewhat predictably in the early morning from Old Cut as they make their way from the bay to the lake to roost. These are the first of the tens of thousands that will be present in the coming weeks.

Greater Scaup – There was a high count of 16,000 October 14 (MAC, LAG, ZAK).

Black Scoter – The first of the fall were observed at the Tip October 11 (MAC).

Long-tailed Duck – The first of fall was observed at the Tip October 12 (MAC).

Ring-necked Pheasant – One was heard at Old Cut October 12 (SAM).

Red-necked Grebe – Two have been present at the Tip October 10-18 (LPBO).

American Golden-Plover – One individual was observed along Hastings Drive October 8 (KGC, RJPC). Two were observed off the platform at Old Cut October 13 (KGC, LAG, AEW) and continued to October 14 (SAM).

Hudsonian Godwit – Two were observed at Turkey Point Beach October 14 (SL, WL) and continued through October 17 (M.Obs). They were joined by a third bird October 18 (APT).

Stilt Sandpiper – One individual continued at Turkey Point Beach through October 15 (M. Obs.).

Long-billed Dowitcher – Three were observed at Turkey Point Beach October 10 (CL, CB), one remained through October 17, and three were observed October 18 (M. Obs.).

Spotted Sandpiper – One late bird was spotted along the south shore of Long Point October 12 (MAC, RACL).

Parasitic Jaeger – Numerous were observed at the Tip October 15 through 18.

Pomarine Jaeger – One was observed at the Tip October 17 (LPBO).

Long-tailed Jaeger – One was observed at the Tip October 17 (RACL, LPBO).

Little Gull – High of 73 at Turkey Point October 15 (RR). Scattered observations at the Tip throughout the last period.

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at the Tip October 14 (MAC), two October 17 (LPBO).

Red-throated Loon – Scattered observations were made throughout the region this week.

Snowy Egret – One was found at Port Burwell October 16 (APT), presumably the same bird was observed at Old Cut October 17 (AC).

Golden Eagle – One was observed flying south over Big Creek October 12 (CAF).

Northern Goshawk – One was observed at the Tip October 13 (RACL).

Warbling Vireo – One late individual was observed at Old Cut October 14 (ZAK).

Tufted Titmouse – One was banded at the Tip October 13 (LPBO).

Evening Grosbeak – Two flew over Old Cut October 13 (SAM), one trailed a flock of siskin at the Tip October 16 and continued October 17 (LPBO).

Pine Siskin – Thousands were observed flying over the Tip and Old Cut October 11 through 18 (LPBO).

Nelson`s Sparrow – One was observed at the Tip October 15 & 16 (MAC, RACL, LAG, ZAK).

Rusty Blackbird – Observed daily throughout the Long Point Area (M. Obs.)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak – Two late migrants were observed at Old Cut October 13 (SAM).

Indigo Bunting – One late individual was observed October 9 (RACL).

 

 

Observers: Cody Bassindale (CB), Kyle Cameron (KGC), Abby Ciona (AC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Cindy Crease (CC), Andrew Don (AD), Christian Friis (CAF), Leanne Grieves (LAG), William Lamond (WL), Sarah Lamond (SL), Catriona Leven (CL), Ryan Leys (RACL), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Mike Norton (MN), Rob Palin (RP), Rebecca Pearce-Cameron (RPC), Ron Ridout (RR), Adam Timpf (APT), Amy Wilson (AEW).

 

 

September 28 to October 7, 2020

 

Warbler migration hit its peak in a most spectacular fashion this past week, particularly at Old Cut. Phenomenal banding totals were recorded on four straight days as thousands of birds of over 100 species passed through the research station. Diversity of warblers and other Neotropical migrants began to drop off on subsequent days; only a few hardy stragglers of most species of warblers, vireos, Scarlet Tanagers, cuckoos and Indigo Buntings remained during the reporting period. Northern Saw-whet Owl banding began October 5 at Old Cut and will continue through mid-November. Banding begins one hour after sunset every night with suitable weather – visitors are welcome.

Waterfowl – The big flocks of Greater Scaup, Redhead, Canvasback and Ruddy Duck that are characteristic of fall on Long Point Bay have yet to assemble though numbers are building slowly.

Snow Goose – The first three migrants of the fall flew over Old Cut October 4 (AB, MAC). A single bird was at Turkey Point Marina October 9 (MSWB, SAM).

Trumpeter Swan – Six were counted at Big Creek National Wildlife Area September 12-14 (JC, RW), one was observed at Bluff Bar (MAC, RACL), and 7 flew over Old Cut on October 9 (SAM).

Lesser Scaup – The first migrant of the fall was seen from the Tip September 29 (RACL).

Great Egret – A high count of 15 flew over Old Cut October 2 (MAC).

Common Nighthawk – Late migrants were reported from Old Cut October 1 and 4 (MAC) and the Port Rowan Wetlands October 7 (SAM).

Chimney Swift – A late bird flew over Old Cut October 2 (LPBO).

Ruby-throated Hummingbird – At least one lingering bird continued at Old Cut until October 9 (LPBO).

American Golden-Plover – Old Cut had up to five birds October 1 to 3 (MAC, SAM). There were two more in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park October 3 (JL). One was at the Tip October 2 (RACL). Another was observed at Turkey Point October 9 (SAM).

Red Knot – One was at Turkey Point Marina October 5 (PG, TG).

Stilt Sandpiper – Up to two were at the Turkey Point Marina October 2 to 5 (M. Obs).

Long-billed Dowitcher – One was at Turkey Point Marina October 2 (JS) and continued to at least October 9 (SAM).

Hudsonian Godwit – One was at Old Cut October 4 (AW, KW, MAC).

Parasitic Jaeger – One was seen off ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park October 3 (JL, SAM).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One flew over Old Cut October 4 (AW, KW). Another was at the Tip October 1 and 2 (KC, RACL).

Northern Saw-whet Owl – The first migrant of the fall was banded at Old Cut October 5 (LPBO). Five were found roosting side by side in the Old Cut woodlot October 8 (LG, MAC).

Red-headed Woodpecker – Two were at the Tip October 1 to 4 (KC, RACL). One was at Old Cut October 3 (JL, SAM).

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher – Three late birds were banded at Old Cut October 5 (LPBO); at least one was still at Old Cut the following day (LPBO).

Acadian Flycatcher – A record-late bird, exceeding the previous late date by 17 days, was banded at the Tip October 3 (KC, RACL).

Traill’s Flycatcher – A late bird was banded at Old Cut October 5 (LPBO).

Yellow-throated Vireo – One was at Old Cut October 1 and 2 (SAM).

Vireos – Late and lingering Philadelphia, Red-eyed and Warbling Vireo were all recorded over the past week, mainly from Old Cut and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park.

Northern Rough-winged Swallow – Up to 15 late birds were seen in ‘New” Long Point Provincial Park October 8 (BH, KB, SAM).

Barn Swallow – One late bird was with the Rough-wingeds in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park October 8 (BH, KB). Another was at the Port Rowan Wetlands October 1 (SAM).

Veery – A late bird was banded at Old Cut October 3 (LPBO).

Fox Sparrow – The first migrant of the fall was at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point October 2 (GB).

Tufted Titmouse – One was on Concession Road A October 5 (NS, RT). One was in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park October 2 (SAM).

Red-breasted Nuthatch – There was a high count of 66 at Old Cut October 1 (LPBO).

Purple Finch – Good numbers of this migratory finch passed through Old Cut in recent days including a high count of 62 October 3 (LPBO).

Pine Siskin – Large numbers of siskins have passed through Old Cut over the past two weeks, with a high count of 373 October 3 (LPBO).

Yellow-breasted Chat – A rare fall chat was at the Tip October 3 (KGC, RACL).

Yellow-headed Blackbird – A male was among the thousands of ‘normal’ blackbirds along Lakeshore Road west of Port Rowan October 5 (BF).

Baltimore Oriole – A very late bird was reported at Old Cut October 3 (AW, KW).

Northern Waterthrush – At least one banded bird remained at Old Cut until October 5 (LPBO).

Yellow-rumped Warbler – There was a huge push of Yellow-rumpeds on Long Point October 1 to 4, with a high count of 2085 at Old Cut October 1 (LPBO).

Kirtland’s Warbler – The second, and latest fall, record for Long Point, one individual was at the Tip on October 9 (LPBO).

Connecticut Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut September 28 and recaptured the next day (LPBO).

Warblers – Late and lingering Ovenbird, American Redstart, Black-and-white, Cape May, Blackburnian and Yellow Warbler were all recorded over the past week, mainly from Old Cut and ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park.

Observers: Gregor Beck (GB), Amanda Bichel (AB), Michael Bradstreet (MSWB), Kenneth Burrell (KB), Kyle Cameron (KGC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Brett Fried (BF), Paula Gent (PG), Ted Gent (TG), Leanne Grieves (LG), Brandon Holden (BH), James Lees (JL), Ryan Leys (RACL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Joe McGill (JM), Ron Ridout (RR), Jay Solanki (JS), Nancy Smith (NS), Rick Thornton (RT), Andrew Wiebe (AW), Kara Wiebe (KW), Rob Woods (RW) and Long Point Bird Observatory staff (LPBO).

 

September 14 to 27, 2020

 

Migration continued in earnest throughout the period with an excellent passage of neotropical migrants (most warblers, vireos and thrushes), and just the first smattering of the later arriving temperate migrants. Lake Erie water levels have been declining steadily over the last month providing many opportunities along the shorelines for viewing shorebirds and other waterbirds. The infamous Bluff Bar on Long Point’s Outer Bay is exposed again for the first time in more than 5 years providing excellent shorebird and waterbird viewing for the adventurous Long Point birder. Previous claims to fame include Brown Pelican and Band-rumped Storm Petrel. Waterfowl numbers have been steadily increasing with dabblers slowly filling the marshes and divers starting to accumulate in deeper water.

The last week of September and first week of October can be the among the most remarkable weeks of the year at Long Point with peak diversity and opportunities for great concentrations of migrants.

On October 3 & 4 birders and champions for LPBO from across Canada will take advantage of this birdy opportunity to embark in the Great Canadian Birdathon – autumn edition – to raise funds for LPBO and bird conservation across Canada. You can Join | Donate | Bird here – https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/bird-studies-canada/p2p/birdathon20/team/the-canucks/captain/the-canucks/ 

 

Highlights:

Yellow-billed Cuckoo – One was observed at the Tip September 23 (MAC).

Common Nighthawk – Migrants continued to move through over the last period with 10-50 being observed almost every night along the lakeshore or at Big Creek National Wildlife Area (LPBO).

American Avocet – One was observed on the north side of the Causeway at Big Creek September 15-16 (APT, SAM)

American Golden-Plover – Numerous individuals observed at Old Cut, the Tip and Bluff Bar throughout the period. There was a high of 6 at Old Cut September 26 (LPBO).

Red Knot – One to three continued to be observed at Turkey Point last observed on September 16 (M.Obs).

Long-billed Dowitcher – One was observed on the north side of the Causeway at Big Creek September 15 (APT)

Black-headed Gull – One first cycle bird was observed at Turkey Point September 16 (BFF).

Little Gull – Individuals were observed at the Tip September 13, 16, and 24 (MAC).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at the Tip September 13 & 20 (LPBO).

Red-throated Loon – One was observed at the Long Point Provincial Park September 23 (BH).

Red-headed Woodpecker – One was observed at Old Cut September 24 & 25 (RV, RACL)

Yellow-throated Vireo – One was observed at Old Cut September 25 (RACL).

Red-breasted Nuthatch – A high of 78 were counted at the Tip September 25 (LPBO).

Northern Mockingbird – One was observed at the Port Rowan Wetlands September 14 (SAM), and one at Birds Canada HQ September 24 (MP).

Purple Finch – Numbers continue to slowly climb with a high of 16 at Old Cut on September 25 (RACL).

Pine Siskin – Numbers continue to slowly climb with a high of 120 at the Tip September 20 (LPBO).

Gambel’s White-crowned Sparrow – One was banded at the Tip September XX (LPBO).

LeConte’s Sparrow – One was observed at the Tip September 22 (MAC).

Rusty Blackbird – Small number of begun to accumulate with other blackbirds in the region.

Blackbirds- The annual river of blackbirds, Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles, has begun with evening accumulations in the hundreds of thousands at the Big Creek National Wildlife Area.

Warbler morning flight – There was a large diurnal movement of warblers west off the point on September 25 (LPBO). A minimum of 1,000 Myrtle Warblers and 1,000 assorted other species dominated by Blackpolls and Western Palms were counted at Old Cut and the Tip.

Northern Waterthrush – A late individual remained at Old Cut until September 26 (LPBO).

Orange-crowned Warbler –  The first of the season was observed at Old Cut and the Tip September 14 (MAC, BFF). Another was observed at the Tip September 24 (MAC), and one was banded at Old Cut September 27 (LPBO).

Connecticut Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut September 26 and recaptures September 28 (LPBO).

Hooded Warbler – One was observed at Old Cut September 25 (SAM).

 

Observers: Mark Conboy (MAC), Brett Fried (BFF), Brandon Holden (BH), Adam Timpf (APT), Ryan Leys (RACL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Michael Preston (MP), Ron Valentine (RV), (Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and Volunteers (LPBO).

 

 

August 25 to September 13, 2020

 

Migration has been steady over the last few weeks as hundreds of millions of neotropical migrants (those destined for central or South America) make their way south through the continent. Clear skies and near perfect conditions for migration did not allow for many significant concentrations on the ground, but there was activity nearly every day. The Breakwater research station had its final day of the season September 9.

One September 12, Long Point Bird Observatory kicked off the fall Birdathon season with a friendly bird race with Spurn (UK), Falsterbo (Sweden), and Cape May Bird Observatories. Together the observatories documented an impressive 305 species. Please consider joining or supporting Team Canucks in the Great Canadian Birdathon birding to raise much needed funds for LPBO. Join or donate here:

https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/bird-studies-canada/p2p/birdathon20/team/the-canucks/captain/the-canucks/ 

 

Highlights:

 

Waterfowl – Many new arrivals to the region this past week were dominated by Blue-winged Teal. New species include Northern Shoveler, Greater Scaup, Bufflehead, and Common Merganser. The first White-winged Scoter was observed September 3 (MRC).

Eurasian Collared Dove – One was observed at Old Cut September 10 (BFF).

Common Nighthawk – There was a consistent migration in the region over the last few weeks with a high of 168 at Big Creek NWA on August 30 (SAM). There was another large flight of over 150 at Turkey Point September 6 (GB).

American Golden Plover – One was observed at Turkey Point August 25 (SC).

Red Knot – Three birds (2 young, 1 adult) consistently occupied Turkey Point beach for most of the last period. A flock of 8 were also observed here on September 7 (SAM). Only one young remained September 12.

Stilt Sandpiper – One that resided at Turkey Point throughout most of the last period was last observed September 9 (SAM, SM). Another was observed at Breakwater September 4 (MTT, RACL)

Red-necked Phalarope – One young bird was observed about 1km offshore of the Tip September 1 (SAM, MAC).

Parasitic Jaeger – Multiple individuals were first observed at Breakwater and the Tip September 2. Individuals have been observed on a near daily basis at the Tip since with a high of 3 on September 7 (LPBO).

Little Gull – Two were observed at the Port Dover harbour September 2 (SAM). One was observed at Turkey Point beach September 10 (BFF), and at the Tip September 13 (MAC).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at Turkey Point August 25 (DT), one at Port Dover and the Tip on September 2 (EQW, LPBO), and at the Tip September 11-12 (MAC).

Sabine’s Gull – One was observed at the Tip September 12 (MAC, MRC).

Common Tern – As many as 10,000 have been staging in the Long Point area over the last few weeks. Their primary roosting locations are along the south beach of Long Point.

Black Tern – A few migrants trickled through with one observed at Turkey Point August 30 (CB- Cathy Bailey), two off Turkey Point September 6-7 (M.Obs). One was observed at the Tip September 5-7 (LPBO).

Great Egret – Concentrations of staging egrets is a relatively new phenomenon in the Long Point area with small roosts at Big Creek NWA, Long Point Crown and Company marshes. A high of 35 were observed at Breakwater and 37 observed from Old Cut. They can be observed daily in any of the area wetlands.

Red-headed Woodpecker – Young birds were observed in the vicinity of Breakwater August 30 through September 6 with a peak of 2 on September 4 (LPBO).

Peregrine Falcon – There were near daily observations at Breakwater and the Tip throughout the period with occasional sightings elsewhere along the lakeshore.

Olive-sided Flycatcher – Numerous birds were observed in the area throughout the period with one bird persisting daily at Old Cut until September 10. There was a high of 2 at Old Cut August 22 (SAM).

Acadian Flycatcher – One was observed at the Tip August 24 (MAC).

Western Kingbird – One was observed at Old Cut September 10 (AB).

White-eyed Vireo – One was observed at Old Cut August 28 (SAM).

Yellow-throated Vireo – One was observed at the Tip August 31 (MAC).

Purple Martin – One last big surge of 12,200 was observed at Old Cut September 7 (LPBO).

Ruby-crowned Kinglet – The first of the season was observed at Old Cut September 5 (SAM).

Red-breasted Nuthatch – Numbers at Long Point haven’t yet materialized for a large irruption year as was suspected earlier this fall. There was a high of 24 at Breakwater August 26 (LPBO).

Horned Lark – The presence of a newly fledged bird at the Tip of Long Point August raised suspicions of a first breeding record for Long Point proper.

Northern Mockingbird – A rare bird at Long Point. One was observed at Old Cut August 25 (SAM, MH).

Yellow-headed Blackbird – One adult male was observed at Big Creek NWA August 28, and a female was observed at the Tip September 5-6 (KGC, LPBO).

Orchard Oriole – A lose family group persisted at Breakwater until September 9, and one was observed at the Tip September 10 (LPBO).

Warblers – Warbler diversity hit its peak this past week with mixed flocks of 10 species or more regularly adorning Long Point woodlots. Typical spruce budworm specialists, (Bay-breasted, Cape May and Tennessee Warbler) have been the dominant species throughout the period.

Golden-winged Warbler – One was banded at Breakwater September 3 which remained until September 5 (LPBO).

Northern Waterthrush – A leucistic bird affectionately known as ‘Isabelle’ was banded at Breakwater August 28 and persisted until September 2.

Northern Waterthrush

Connecticut Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut September 5, and Breakwater September 6 and recaptured September 9 (LPBO).

Observers: Gregor Beck (GB), Amanda Bichel (AB), Kyle Cameron (KGC), Shirley Chambers (SC), Mathieu Charette (MRC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Brett Fried (BFF), Megan Heibert (MH), Ryan Leys (RACL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Estela Quintero-Weldon (EQW), Dave Trumbell (DT).

 

 

Summer 2020 Summary

 

June 11 to August 24, 2020

 

Seemingly endless hot sultry weather characterized almost the entire summer at Long Point. Rare birds were few and far between, but excellent shorebird habitat at Silver Lake in Port Dover did provide some entertainment. The fall migration monitoring season commenced at Old Cut on August 15 and will continue through November 15.

Highlights:

Trumpeter Swan – Four were at Turkey Point June 29 (AG).

Long-tailed Duck – A rare over-summering individual was found at the Tip August 5-13 (RL, WVH).

Bufflehead – Another unusual summer duck, one was at Silver Lake in Port Dover August 5 (AB, MAC).

Red-breasted Merganser – As with Long-tailed Ducks, Red-breasted Mergansers sometimes remain all summer at the Tip, as the three that were there August 3 (MAC) presumably had done. Six were at Turkey Point August 12-15 (SM).

Common Nighthawk – The first migrants of the fall were at Big Creek Marsh August 8 (SAM). Seasonal accumulations at Big Creek NWA and elsewhere in earnest August 21 when 110 were observed (SAM). Double-digits have been records nightly there since. Forty-two were observed at the Tip August 23 (MAC).

King Rail – One of these provincially and federally endangered birds was heard at Big Creek National Wildlife Area August 12 (SAM) and again August 14 (GP, RL).

Black-bellied Plover – The first migrants of the fall were at the Tip August 1 (SAM).

American Golden-Plover – An unusual mid-summer sighting: three flew past the Birds Canada office in Port Rowan July 18 (SAM).

Semipalmated Plover – The first migrants of the fall were at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 31 (MAC. SM).

Ruddy Turnstone – The first migrants of the fall were at Turkey Point August 2 (SM).

Red Knot – Two young were discovered at Turkey Point August 21 (SM), and remained until at least August 24 (SAM).

Turkey Point | Aug 23 | Stu Mackenzie

Stilt Sandpiper – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 26 (AW, MAC, SB).

Sanderling – The first migrant of the fall was at Turkey Point July 19 (AW, EC, EH).

Baird’s Sandpiper – Ten were observed along Long Point’s south shore August 18 (SAM).

Buff-breasted Sandpiper – One was discovered at Turkey Point August 21 (GS), and continued until at least August 23 (SAM).

Turkey Point | Aug 23 | Stu Mackenzie

Pectoral Sandpiper – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 17 (SM).

Semipalmated Sandpiper – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 26 (AW, MAC, SB).

Short-billed Dowitcher – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 14 (MAC).

Solitary Sandpiper – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 14 (MAC).

Lesser Yellowlegs – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 8 (SM).

Willet – One was observed at Turkey Point August 17 and continued to August 21 (Steve Moore).

Turkey Point | Aug 17 | Dan MacNeal

Greater Yellowlegs – The first migrant of the fall was at Silver Lake in Port Dover July 8 (SM).

Little Gull – After being absent for much of the summer, one was at the Tip August 3 (MAC).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was at the Tip June 25 (RL).

Great Egret – Numbers were building throughout the summer, with a recent high count of 14 flying over Old Cut August 15 (LPBO).

Black-crowned Night-Heron – Single birds were at Old Cut June 30 (MAC) and Big Creek National Wildlife Area July 19 (AW, EC, EH). Two were at the Thoroughfare Unit of Long Point National Wildlife Area Augsut 6 (CL).

Northern Goshawk – An unusual summer observation was of one at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park July 22 and 25 (CL).

Peregrine Falcon – One was observed along Concession Road A June 24 (SAM). Another was at Big Creek National Wildlife Area July 28 (RL) and August 11 (RL, SAM).

Olive-sided Flycatcher – As many as two individuals have been observed at Old Cut from August 21 through August 24 (SAM).

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher – The first migrant of the fall was banded at Old Cut August 12 (KGC, MAC, RL).

Tufted Titmouse – At least one was at Sleepy Hollow June 21 to July 21 (DM, RP). Up to seven were at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point June 14 to July 24 (ES, GB). One was also along Concession Road 1 June 12 (SAM).

swallows – The Long Point swallow roost began taking shape in mid-July with as many as 100,000 individuals swarming Big Creek NWA and surrounding wetlands at dusk. This annual phenomenon continued through August 17 and is expected to continue in some form until early September. Peak estimates so far occurred August 8 with more than 275,000 birds at Big Creek – the majority are Bank followed by Tree, Barn and mere thousands of Purple Martin. At least half a million swallows occupy Long Point at this time of year. You can observe the exodus of swallows every morning on weather radar out of Exeter, ON.

Big Creek | Aug 26 | Stu Mackenzie

Sedge Wren – One was at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park June 18 (SAM).

Northern Mockingbird – One was in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park July 7 (SM). The same bird may have been the one at Old Cut August 2 (MAC). One was at the Tip July 17 (MAC).

Swainson’s Thrush – The first migrant of the fall was at Old Cut August 16 (MAC).

Purple Finch – Scarce this year; the only observations during the entire summer were at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point June 14, July 10 and August 15 (GB). The first migrant of the season was observed at Old Cut August 19, and banded August 21 (LPBO).

Clay-coloured Sparrow – One was along West Quarter Line Road June 19-July 16 (AT).

Lark Sparrow – Another good sparrow from West Quarter Line Road was a Lark Sparrow, present August 14 (AT) to 16 (multiple observers).

Tennessee Warbler – The first migrant of the fall was at Port Rowan August 4 (SAM).

Canada Warbler – The first migrant of the fall was at Old Cut August 12 (KGC, MAC, RL).

Observers: Gregor Beck (GB), Amanda Bichel (AB), Sarah Bonnett (SB), Kyle Cameron (KGC), Ezra Campanelli (EC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Anita Goodman (AG), Eric Heisey (EH), Catriona Leven (CL), Ryan Leys (RL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Dan MacNeal (DM), Steve Moore (SM), Rob Porter (RP), George Prieksaitis (GP), Evan Sinclair (ES), Greg Stuart (GS), Adam Timpf (AT), Will Van Hemessen (WVH), Alessandra Wilcox (AW), Amy Wilson (AW), and Long Point Bird Observatory staff (LPBO).

 

Spring 2020 Summary

 

 

May 22 TO June 10:

 

Unfortunately, the poor weather that characterized early May meant that the more conducive migration conditions during this reporting period caused the vast majority of thrushes, vireos and warblers to rush past Long Point, resulting in many very ‘quiet’ mornings. However, there were a few rather spectacular mornings when migrants abounded and  a number of notable rarities delighted birders and banders alike.

The migration monitoring season came to an end at Breakwater and the Tip June 3 but continues at Old Cut in some capacity to June 10. The banding lab and visitor centre remain closed for the duration of the spring season, however trails are open for birding as long as physical distancing rules are strictly adhered to. Stay tuned for updates about how the fall season will operate.

Highlights:

Trumpeter Swan – Two were observed near Old Cut May 22 (SAM).

Black Scoter – One flew past the Tip with a pair of White-winged Scoters May 27 (MAC).

Northern Bobwhite – One was singing near St. Williams June 5 (RR). Individuals were observed around St. Williams and Booth’s Harbour in recent weeks – undoubtedly escaped or intentionally released captive-bred birds.

 

 

Chuck-wills-widow – One was singing in St. Williams early in the morning of May 22 (RR).

 

 

 

The Tip | May 26 | Mark Conboy

Snowy Egret – The first one in 15 years graced the Tip with its elegance May 26 (MAC, MTT, SAM).

Black-crowned Night-Heron – Always uncommon at Long Point, night-herons have been especially scarce this spring; the only record so far was one that flew over Breakwater May 24 (AI, BB).

Brown Pelican – Long Point’s third Brown Pelican flew north past the Tip May 28 (MAC, MTT) and was not relocated. The pelican was observed the same day as the remnants of Tropical Storm Bertha arrived over Lake Erie. No other storm birds were observed despite hours of continuous lake watching at the Tip. Another Brown Pelican was on Lake Ontario the week previous.

Port Rowan | June 4 | Ryan Leys, Stu Mackenzie

American White Pelican – A lone bird circled briefly over Port Rowan June 4 before disappearing to parts unknown (RL, SAM).

Mississippi Kite – An apparent adult flew over Old Cut May 30 (RL).

Laughing Gull – An adult continued at the Tip off and on until May 26 (MAC, MTT, SAM).

Little Gull – Immature birds continued to frequent the Tip daily, with a high count of 11 May 26 (SAM). Four flew past Breakwater June 1 (AI, BB).

Iceland Gull – One bird lingered at the Tip May 25 to 27 (MAC, MTT).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One 1st-2nd cycle bird remained at the Tip through May 29 (MAC, MTT).

Whimbrel – The single largest count of Whimbrel for the spring were the 118 that winged their way north past the Tip May 26 (MAC, MTT). A flock of 75 winged north over South Coast Gardens near Turkey Pt. May 25 (GB, KK).

Upland Sandpiper – Seldom reported at Long Point; one flew over Breakwater May 24 (BB).

Pacific Loon – This May proved to be good for Pacific Loons, which in recent years have become something of a regular occurrence late in the month. Three were off the Tip May 24 (MAC, MTT, SAM). One was also heard calling at Old Cut May 24 (SAM). One more was off the Tip May 28 (MAC, MTT).

Olive-sided Flycatcher – Several were observed during the latter part of May throughout the Long Point area; the high count was of three at the Tip May 23 (MAC, MTT).

Acadian Flycatcher – Individuals were observed at Old Cut on and off from May 24 through June 9. Individuals were also observed in the Old LPPP May 24-25 (DL),  at Breakwater May 29, and at the Tip May 25 (MTT), and 2 on June 2 (MAC).

The Tip | May 25 | Stu Mackenzie

Loggerhead Shrike – The second one in as many years was observed at the Tip May 25 and banded at May 26 (MAC, MTT, SAM). This second-year male had not been previously banded as part of any Loggerhead Shrike banding program, so its origin remain a mystery.

Tufted Titmouse – Two were at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point May 23 (GB, KK).

Sedge Wren – One was heard along Hastings Drive May 23 (SAM).

American Pipit – A late one flew over Old Cut May 24 (SAM).

Pine Siskin – Very few reports of this irruptive finch have been made this spring, but one was at the Tip May 24 (MTT).

Clay-coloured Sparrow – One was found in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park May 27 (CB).

Yellow-breasted Chat – One was banded at Breakwater May 27, and another was observed there the following day (AI, BB).

Golden-winged Warbler – One was at Breakwater May 23 (AI, BB) and one was at the Tip May 24 (MAC).

Prothonotary Warbler – Migrants were observed at Breakwater May 19 (male), and May 26 (female). A singing male was also observed on Hastings Drive May 23 (SAM).

Connecticut Warbler – There was one along Hastings Drive May 23 (SAM) and one in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park May 25 (RP).

‘New’ Long Point P.P. | May 24 | Graham Wood

Kentucky Warbler – One delighted many birders in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park May 24 (RW, GW et al.).

Yellow-throated Warbler – One was at Turkey Point Provincial Park May 23 (RC).

Cerulean Warbler – One male was observed on Hastings Drive May 23 (SAM), another at the Old LPPP May 24 (APT, KGB), and a female was observed at the Tip June 1 (MTT).

Prairie Warbler – Single birds were found at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park May 25 (RP), Breakwater May 27 (AI, BB) and the Tip June 1 (MTT).

Breakwater | May 25 | Alex Israel & Brendan Boyd

 

Old Cut | June 4 | Ryan Leys

Summer Tanager – Two were at Breakwater May 25 (AI, BB), and another was at Old Cut June 3 (RL).

Blue Grosbeak – A male was observed briefly at the Tip May 24 (SAM).

Dickcissel – One flew over the Tip June 1 (MAC).

 

Observers: Gregor Beck (GB), Brendan Boyd (BB), Courteney Brown (CB), Ken Burrell (KGB), Mark Conboy (MAC), Robert Curry (RC), Alex Israel (AI), Kevin Kavanagh (KK), Denis Lepage (DL), Ryan Leys (RL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Rob Porter (RP), Ron Ridout (RR), Adam Timpf (APT), Matt Timpf (MTT), Ross Wood (RW), Graham Wood (GW).

Abbreviations: LPPP – Long Point Provincial Park

 

 

 

 

 

APRIL 15 TO MAY 21:

 

Red-necked Grebe – Two were observed at Turkey Point May 13 (HD, HP).

Eurasian Collared Dove – One continuing bird was observed May 6 (RR), May 16 (JV), and May 19 (SAM).

Concession A | May 5 | Photo: Stu Mackenzie

White-winged Dove – One was present at a feeder on Concession A from May 5-10 (KW, SW).

Turkey Point Beach | May 2 | Photo: Stu Mackenzie

American Avocet – Two were observed at Turkey Point beach May 2 (NH).

Whimbrel – One was observed at the Townsend Sewage Lagoons May 15-16 (MS, GS, CB). Three were observed at Turkey Point May 20 (SM).

Turkey Point Beach | April 16 | Photo: Adam Timpf

Willet – One was observed at Turkey Point Beach May 16 (APT)

Red Knot – One was observed on Hastings Dr. May 18-19 (MD, SAM).

Concession A, Erie View | May 3 | Photo: Adam Timpf

Ruff – One orange male was observed along Concession A, and later at the James Berry Drain on Lakeshore Rd. on May 3 (APT). The same individual was rediscovered along the Long Point Causeway May 16 (JV, DR, GR, NM).

Little Gull – Observed regularly observation on the Inner Bay, Old Cut, and Tip.

Laughing Gull – One adult was observed at the Tip May 21 (MAC, MTT).

White-eyed Vireo – One was observed in the Old LPPP May 3 (BF), and May 10 (RR). One was observed on Lighthouse Crst. May 18 (MAC).

Sedge Wren – One was observed at Old Cut May 8 (RR), and others in the New LPPP May 15 (HD, HP).

Fish Crow – One individual has been observed on and off in the vicinity of the New LPPP on numerous occasions (M.OBs.).

Pine Siskin – Two were observed at Old Cut May 20 (MAC).

Clay-coloured Sparrow – Individuals were observed at Old Cut (CB, JB) and the Tip (MAC) May 2, and May 13 (RR, SAM). Local birds are also back on territory. One was observed in Port Rowan May 7 (SAM), and Turkey Point May 4 (GB, ES).

American Tree Sparrow – One late individual was observed on Hastings Dr. May 14 (M.Obs.).

Fox Sparrow – A late individual was observed at Old Cut May 12 (SAM).

Yellow-breasted Chat – One was observed at the Port Rowan Wetlands May 18 (SAM).

Louisiana Waterthrush – One was observed at the Old LPPP May 1 (KC), and at Old Cut May 3 (SAM).

Golden-winged Warbler – One was observed at Old Cut May 14 (BF).

Lawrence’s Warbler – One was observed in the New LPPP May 16 (MP).

Prothonotary Warbler – One was observed along Concession A May 18 (SAM).

Orange-crowned Warbler – A very early migrant was at Old Cut April 29 (RR).

Hooded Warbler – Individuals were observed or heard in the Old Long Point Provincial Park 10, 15 and 18 (BF, RR, SAM, DT), and one male was at Old Cut May 17 (SAM). Another individual was observed and later banded at the Tip May 20 (LPBO).

Yellow-throated Warbler – One was heard in South Walsingham forest May 2 (JS, RS, SS), and a male was observed at Old Cut May 14 (SAM).

LeConte’s Sparrow – One was singing at Old Cut May 16 (SAM).

Port Ryerse | May 17 | Photo: Paul and Lou Jean MacNeal

Summer Tanager – One young male was observed at Old Cut May 8 (SAM, RR). A female was observed in the New Long Point Provincial Park May 14 (RS, JS). Another young male was in Port Ryerse May 17-19 (PLJM).

Tufted Titmouse – One was observed at Old Cut May 15 (RR, SAM).

 

Observers: Cody Bassindale (CB), Gregor Beck (GB), Chris Boccia (CB), James Boccia (JB), Mark Conboy (MAC), Mark and Anna Dickson (MAD), Hannah Dodington (HD), Brett Fried (BF), Ethan Gosnell (EG), Nathan Hood (NH), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Paul and Lou Jean MacNeal (PLJM), Nancy MacPherson (NM), Steve Moore (SM), Henqrique Pacheco (HP), Mark Pomeroy (MP), Ron Ridout (RR), Dan Riley (DR), Garth Riley (GR), Gis Segler (GS), Max Segler (MS), Jeff Skevington (JS), Richard Skevington (RS), Sharron Skevington (SS), Evan Sinclair (ES), Adam Timpf (APT), Matt Timpf (MTT), Josh Vandermuelen (JV), Kerrie Wilcox (KW), Steve Wilcox (SW).

 

Abbreviations: LPPP – Long Point Provincial Park

 

 

 

April 1 to 15:

 

The spring migration monitoring season officially began on April 1 at Old Cut. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, operations were scaled back markedly. The first two weeks of the season were characterized by generally unfavourable migration conditions, with lots of wind from any direction but seldom the south, and mild to downright cold weather. On April 13 we had a major sieche event and flooding, followed by 4 cm of snow on April 15. However, there were a few days of genuine migration and mild weather, and a handful of interesting sightings too.

 

Trumpeter Swan – Up to three individuals were seen from different locations around Inner Long Point Bay, including the causeway and Old Cut (multiple observers).

Snow Goose – One was at Port Rowan April 10 (SAM).

Red-throated Loon – One was seen from Port Rowan April 11 (anonymous observer).

Eurasian Collared-Dove – One flew over Old Cut April 13 (MAC).

Pectoral Sandpiper – One flew over Old Cut April 4 (MTT)

Little Gull – One flew past Old Cut April 9 (MAC),

Hairy Woodpecker – Though common on the mainland, this woodpecker is always a notable sighting on the point. One was at Old Cut April 13 (MTT, SAM).

Fish Crow – One was reported near Old Cut April 5 (KB). It was relocated in Port Rowan on April 6 (SAM, RR).

Common Raven – One was at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point April 7 and 14 (ES, GB).

Tufted Titmouse – An ongoing titmouse was at South Coast Gardens near Turkey Point April 2 to 13 (ES, GB, KK).

American Pipit – An early pipit flew over Old Cut April 5 (MAC).

Rusty Blackbird – One to 10 daily at Old Cut (MAC, MTT).

Yellow-headed Blackbird – One was at a Forestville feeder April 15 (EH).

Orange-crowned Warbler – One was at Old Cut April 12 (MAC); this was likely the same bird that was reported from Hastings Drive April 9 (NH).

 

Observers: Gregor Beck (GB), Ken Burrell (KB), Mark Conboy (MAC), Erika Hastie (EH), Nathan Hood (NH), Kevin Kavanagh (KK), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Ron Ridout (RR), Evan Sinclair (ES), and Matt Timpf (MTT).

 

Winter 2019-20 Summary

November 15, 2019 to March 31, 2020

 

Snow Goose – Up to four were seen November 16-December 3 in the fields along Lakeshore Road, east to Port Rowan (multiple observers).

 Ross’s Goose – Three were seen from Lee Brown WMA to the causeway January 18 – 28 (AT, TM et al.)

 Greater White-fronted Goose – Groups of three or four were seen from Lee Brown WMA to the causeway numerous times between January 22 (PB) and March 25. A group of five was the maximum count along the causeway February 19 (HG).

 Cackling Goose – Up to two were present off and on from mid-December through March in and around the Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area (multiple observers).

 Trumpeter Swan – Up to two were reported in the area from January to March (multiple observers).

Lee Brown WMA | March 17 | Photo: Ethan Gosnell

 Eurasian Wigeon – One was found at the Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area March 17 (JF, MT). It was joined by another March 22 (EG). They lingered in the area until the end of the month (multiple observers).

 Green-winged Teal x Common Teal Hybrid – One was seen at the Lee Brown Wildlife Management Area March 31 (RR).

 Black Scoter – One was on Outer Long Point Bay March 23 (MAC, RR, SAM).

 Eared Grebe – One was photographed off Port Rowan Harbour March 31 (SAM).

 Virginia Rail – One was on the causeway January 12 (anonymous observer).

 Purple Sandpiper – One was at Turkey Point November 15-16 (SMo, BC)

 Iceland Gull – One was seen from the causeway January 30 (SAM).

 Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was seen along the Port Rowan waterfront March 31 (SAM).

 Glaucous Gull – Single birds were seen along the causeway February 23 (LFa, SAM), off Port Rowan March 7 (RS), and at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 21 (AG, LFr).

 Red-throated Loon – An unusual wintering bird was seen from the causeway January 15-19 (HG, RW, SAM).

 Great Egret – A rare mid-winter sighting was made at the Birds Canada headquarters in Port Rowan January 15 (SAM). An early spring sighting was made at the Port Rowan Wetland March 28 (BW).

 Golden Eagle – One was seen periodically from mid-November to mid-February, mainly west of Highway 59 (multiple observers).

 Northern Goshawk – One as seen along County Road 13 January 2 (AT), and another near Turkey Point February 26 (GB).

 Snowy Owl – One was frequently reported from the causeway and Long Point town site mid-January to February 26 (multiple observers).

 Barred Owl – One was reported along Big Creek December 14 (AT, RR).

 Short-eared Owl – Up to two were seen over the fields along Lakeshore Road January 22-28 (SP et al.).

 Long-eared Owl – Three were reported at Walsingham December 28 (LF, SF).

 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker – An early migrant was at Old Cut March 6 (MAC).

 Peregrine Falcon – At least one was seen at various places between Long Point and Turkey Point throughout the winter (multiple observers).

 Eastern Phoebe – An overwintering bird was seen at the Birds Canada headquarters and the nearby Port Rowan Wetland January 10-20 (SAM).

 White-eyed Vireo – A very late one was at the Port Rowan Wetland December 6 (SAM).

Northern Shrike – Several were seen around the area, including a long staying bird at the Port Rowan Wetland January 7-March 18 (multiple observers).

Common Raven – Periodic sightings throughout the area (multiple observers).

Tufted Titmouse – There was a long-staying bird near Turkey Point January 1 until at least March 8 (GB, KK). Other sightings across the area were infrequent.

Northern Rough-winged Swallow – Four early migrants were seen along the causeway March 31 (SAM).

Grey Catbird – A dead one was found at Port Royal March 1 (TG).

Brown Thrasher – An overwintering bird was at Old Cut January 19-February 29 (multiple observers). Another was in ‘New” Long Point Provincial Park January 17 (SAM).

Hermit Thrush – A few birds overwintered, including one at Old Cut January 19 (SAM) and on the Wilson Tract Feb 27 (HG, KG, RG). Possibly an early migrant was at Backus Woods March 27 (AT, TM).

American Pipit – Up to nine were at the Birds Canada headquarters February 18 (MAC, JH, SAM). Others were seen at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park March 14 and in Port Rowan March 31 (SAM).

Lapland Longspur – Two were reported from Old Cut November 16 (EG, IA, NH)

Evening Grosbeak – One was in ‘New” Long Point Provincial Park February 1 (SAM).

White-winged Crossbill – Fifteen were found at the St. Williams Conservation Reserve March 4 (AT).

Pine Siskin – Rare this winter, with only one sighting from the West Quarter Line Road January 29 (AT).

White-crowned Sparrow – Two were at Old Cut January 1 (HG). One was in ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park January 24 (SAM).

Savannah Sparrow – One was at the Barrett-Sanderson Tract January 8 (SAM). Another was along the West Quarter Line Road January 19 (MJ).

Eastern Meadowlark – One overwintered at the Port Rowan Wetland (multiple observers). An early migrant was reported from Old Cut March 15 (GB).

Great-tailed Grackle – One was found at the Port Rowan Wetland December 6 (SAM).

Orange-crowned Warbler – One was at ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park December 12 (SAM).

Common Yellowthroat – One was found on the Long Point Christmas Bird Count, December 14, near Turkey Point (KC, RPC).

Northern Parula – A late bird was found along Concession Road A November 11 (DT, SAM)

Palm Warbler – One was in Port Rowan March 13 (SAM).

Pine Warbler – One was on Long Point around the vicinity of Old Cut December 18-March 5 (multiple observers).

Yellow-rumped Warbler – Several scattered winter records (multiple observers).

Observers – Isabel Apkarian (IA), Gregore Beck (GB), Gerald Bloemendal (GB), Barb Charlton (BC), Kyle Cameron (KC), Mark Conboy (MAC), Luke Fazio (LFa), Jamie Fowler (JF), Lucas Foerster (LF), Stacie Foerster (SF), Lev Frid (LFr), Henny Giles (HG), Nathan Hood (NH), Kevin Giles (KG), Rebecca Giles (RG), Ethan Gosnell (EG), Terri Groh (TG), Amanda Guercio (AG), Jeremy Hussell (JH), Mourad (MJ), Kevin Kavanagh (KK), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Taylor Marshall (TM), Steve Moore (SMo), Rebecca Pearce-Cameron (RPC), Steven Price (SP),  Ron Ridout (RR), Richard Skevington (RS), Adam Timpf (AT), Madelaine Tortolo (MT), Doug Tozer (RT), Bob Wood (BW), and Ross Wood (RW).

Fall 2019 Summary
 

Visitors are always welcome. Daily birding hikes depart the Old Cut Research Station one hour after sunrise, and banding demonstrations occur all morning until November 15. Owl monitoring will commence on fair-weather nights from October 1 to November 15. Explore the Long Point Birding Trail. You can help contribute to sightings in the Long Point area by submitting your sightings to eBird or by sharing them with us at lpbo@birdscanada.org. For more information on the research, education, and training programs of LPBO select this link and check out the 2018 LPBO Program Report. Your best source for information about the birds and birding sites around Long Point can be found in A Birding Guide to the Long Point Area by Ron Ridout, available at the LPBO Shoppe and Birds Canada headquarters.

If you enjoy these updates and wish to support the research, training, and conservation projects of the Long Point Bird Observatory, please consider supporting the Cygnus Crusaders in their Great Canadian Birdathon, or better yet, conduct your own Birdathon for LPBO.

LPBO’s Old Cut Research Station and Visitor Centre is open to the public during spring and fall migration (from April to mid-June, and early August to mid-November) from 9 a.m. until Noon.

The complete list of the birds of Long Point is available here.

 

Banding Totals

Old Cut Breakwater Tip

Number banded for the period

190 77
Season Total 4129 1906 1533
Monarch Census Cumulative Total 2529 7280

 

November 1

This past week brought heavy southwest winds from Tropical Storm Olga, causing flooding along the Lake Erie shoreline. This was followed by another strong southwest storm on the evening of October 31 which caused further flooding and damage. Dawn and dusk blackbird flights have been impressive with a high count of 500,000 observed at Big Creek Marsh (SHM). Waterfowl movement is also quite impressive with thousands of Redhead flying over Old Cut daily and thousands of Scaup present on the Outer Bay.

Redhead – Thousands flying over Old Cut Dyke daily (LPBO)

Common Nighthawk – One flew over Old Cut October 28 (SHM)

American Golden-Plover – One was observed at the ‘New’ Provincial Park October 28 (eBird)

Hudsonian Godwit – Two were observed at the Tip October 28 (SAM)

Sanderling – Thirty flew by the ‘New’ Provincial Park November 1 (SAM)

Parasitic Jaeger – One was observed at the Tip October 27 (SAM)

Little Gull – One was observed off the Tip October 25 (SMJ). Another was observed on the Inner Bay October 25 (SAM). One was seen off the south shore of Long Point October 26 (SAM). Three were observed at the Port Rowan Harbour October 28 (SAM)

Black Tern – One was observed at the Tip October 27 (SHM). One was observed off Port Rowan Harbour October 28 (SAM)

American Bittern – One was observed along the Causeway October 29 (SHM)

Long-eared Owl – One was observed at the ‘New’ Provincial Park October 26 (ATT, TM, JC)

White-eyed Vireo – One was banded at Old Cut October 29 (LPBO)

Tree Swallow – Six were at the Tip October 27 (LPBO). Two flew over Old Cut October 30 (KGC, SHM).

Tennessee Warbler – One was observed at the Tip October 26 (SHM)

Observers: Kyle Cameron (KGC), Janice Chard (JC), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Taylor Marshall (TM), Sam Meigs (SHM), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and Volunteers (LPBO).

 

October 25

Snow Goose – One was observed at Old Cut October 18 (SHM).

Waterfowl – Tens of thousands of waterfowl are occupying Long Point’s Inner and Outer Bays dominated by Redhead, Canvasback, Scaup, and Ruddy Duck. Best viewing is from the Old Cut dyke in the AM to watch the flight to the lake or on the lake from the Long Point Provincial Park.

Red-necked Grebe – Two were observed at the Tip October 20 (SMJ).

Yellow-billed Cuckoo – One late individual was observed at the Tip October 17 (SMJ, KGC).

Sora – One was observed at the Tip October 17 (SBC).

Hudsonian Godwit – One was observed at the Tip October 23 (SMJ).

Pomarine Jaeger – Two were observed at the Tip October 22 (SMJ).

Parasitic Jaeger – A high count of three were observed off the Tip October 17 (SMJ, KGC, JBG).

Sabine’s Gull – One was observed off the Tip October 17 (SMJ).

Little Gull – One was observed at the Tip October 22 (SMJ), and at Port Dover October 23 (SAM).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at the Tip October 19 (SBC).

Cattle Egret – Scattered sightings of one individual making the rounds near Port Rowan October 23 (SM, DL et al.) and a high count of four at Townsend Sewage Lagoons October 21-24 (JL).

Black-crowned Night Heron – One was observed at the Tip October 23 (LHS).

Northern Goshawk – One was observed at the Tip October 17 (SMJ) and one was at BSC Headquarters October 22 (AVT).

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher – A late individual was banded at Old Cut October 18 (LPBO).

White-eyed Vireo – One was at the ‘New’ Provincial Park October 17 and 19 (SAM, EG, EG2).

Varied Thrush – One flew over Old Cut October 17 (SAM).

Yellow-breasted Chat – One was banded at the Tip October 20 (LPBO).

Yellow-headed Blackbird – One was observed at BSC Headquarters October 18 (DL).

Blackbirds – The Long Point blackbird roost is approaching one million strong, primarily observed from the Big Creek National Wildlife Area at dusk.

Observers -Kyle Cameron (KGC), Santiago Castro (SBC), Ethan Gosnell (EG), Elaine Gosnell (EG2), Julian Grudens (JBG) Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), James Lees (JL), Denis Lepage (DL), Stu Mackenzie (SAM), Sean Macey (SM), Lakesha Smith (LHS), Antoine Turcotte (AVT), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and volunteers (LPBO)

October 15

Consistently unfavourable winds continued to plague Long Point. Little glimmers of favourable northerly and westerly winds did deliver some migrants on occasion.

Waterfowl numbers and diversity are rising; several thousand Scaup, primarily Greaters, are observed at the Tip daily, and several thousand Redheads are being observed from the Old Cut dyke in the early morning. Twenty-five waterfowl species were observed in the area over the period.

Passerine movements in general have been lacklustre though some reasonably good movements of temperate migrants with a mix of late neotropical migrants were documented at both research stations this past weekend. Additionally, the river of blackbirds is starting to build with approximately 100,000 birds accumulating in the Big Creek National Wildlife Area every evening. Five to twenty thousand are being observed from Old Cut daily.

Highlights:

Tundra Swan – The first family of the season was observed near the Tip October 11 (KGC).

Snow Goose – One was observed flying over Old Cut October 5 (SAM).

Scoters – All three species (White-winged, Surf and Black) were observed with some regularity at the Tip (LPBO).

Horned Grebe – Three were observed on the Outer Bay October 7 (SAM).

Red-necked Grebe – One was observed at the Tip October 10 and 15 (LPBO).

Red Knot – One young bird was observed at Turkey Point beach October 11 (SAM).

American Golden-Plover – One was observed at Turkey Point beach October 6 (SAM).

Stilt Sandpiper – One bird was observed at Silver Lake in Port Dover October 5 (APT). Five were observed at Turkey Point beach October 6 (SAM), and one remained for October 8 (HG).

Pectoral Sandpiper – Seven were observed at Turkey Point beach October 11 (RR).

Spotted Sandpiper – One was observed near the Tip October 11 (KGC).

Little Gull – One was observed at the Tip October 12 (JBG, KGC).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One bird was observed from Old Cut October 5 (SMJ) and another at the Tip October 9 and 14 (LPBO).

Red-throated Loon – Individuals were observed from Old Cut October 5 and 7 (SAM, JBG).

American Bittern – Individuals were observed at Old Cut October 8 and 9 (JBG, SMJ).

Least Bittern – One was observed at the Tip October 6 (SBC).

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron – One immature bird was reported at the Tip October 7 (SBC). If accepted, this would be the 5th record for Long Point and the first since 1987.

Northern Goshawk – One individual was observed at Old Cut October 7 (SAM).

Red-shouldered Hawk – Several individuals were observed throughout the period (LPBO).

Broad-winged Hawk – One was observed over Old Cut October 8 (SMJ).

Northern Saw-whet Owl – The first of the season was banded at Old Cut October 8 (LPBO).

Peregrine Falcon – Several individuals were observed throughout the period from both Old Cut and the Tip, with a high count of six at the Tip October 12 (LPBO).

White-eyed Vireo – One young bird was observed in the New Long Point Provincial Park October 12 (SAM).

Western Kingbird – One was observed at The Coves on October 4 (RS).

Bank Swallow – One was observed at the Tip October 13 (SKA).

Purple Finch – One was observed at Old Cut October 7 (SAM).

Northern Waterthrush – One was observed at the Tip October 5 (SBC).

Ovenbird – One was banded at Old Cut October 14 (LPBO).

‘Yellow’ Palm Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut October 14 (LPBO).

Observers: Shane Abernethy (SKA), Jody Allair (JRA), David Bradley (DB), James Casey (JC), Santiago Castro (SBC), Brett Fried (JBF), Callum Gibson (CPG), Eric Giles (EG), Henny Giles (HG), Julian Grudens (JBG), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Taylor Marshall (TM), Sam Meigs (SHM), Ron Ridout (RR), Elijah Rodgers (EJR), Richard Skevington (RS), Graham Sorenson (GS), Adam Timpf (APT), Matt Timpf (MTT), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and volunteers (LPBO)

 

October 4

Highlights:

Surf Scoter – One was observed at the Tip September 30 (SMJ).

White-winged Scoter – Small numbers are now being observed regularly from the Tip (LPBO).

Black-billed Cuckoo – One was banded at Old Cut October 3 (LPBO).

Chimney Swift – One was observed at Old Cut October 1 (SMJ, JBG).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at the Tip September 30 (SMJ).

Peregrine Falcon – Numerous individuals have been moving through the area (M. Obs.).

LeConte’s Sparrow – One was observed at the Tip October 3 (EJR)

Rusty Blackbird – Present in small numbers throughout the area during this period (M. Obs.).

Orange-crowned Warbler – Observed regularly throughout the area. (M. Obs.).

Observers: Julian Grudens (JBG), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), Elijah Rodgers (EJR), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and volunteers (LPBO).

September 30

Passage was a little slow as strong southerly winds and warm temperatures prevailed. Activity picked up a little with the onset of strong northerlies over the weekend. Bird diversity is at its seasonal high as warblers and flycatchers mix with kinglets and sparrows. Waterfowl numbers are also building on Long Point’s Inner Bay and Lake Erie. There was a big push of Monarch butterflies this week with 5,202 observed at the Tip alone.

Highlights:

Cackling Goose – One was observed at the Tip September 29 (SMJ).

Long-tailed Duck – Two were observed at Gravelly Bay September 19 (KGC, SBC, SKA).

Horned Grebe – One was observed at the Tip September 26 (SMJ).

Eastern Whip-poor-will – One was observed at Old Cut September 26 (SKA).

Pectoral Sandpiper – One was at the Tip September 27-29 (SMJ).

Parasitic Jaeger – One was observed at the Tip September 24 (SMJ).

Little Gull – Individuals were observed off the Tip September 24-26 (SMJ) and two were at Turkey Point September 29 (SAM).

Bonaparte’s Gull – A high count of 2,090 were observed at the Tip September 25 (SMJ).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was observed at the Tip September 26 and 29 (SMJ).

Horned Lark – The first migrant of the season was observed in the ‘New’ Provincial Park September 24 (eBird).

American Pipit – The first migrants of the season were observed in the ‘New’ Provincial Park September 24 (M.Obs.).

Nelson’s Sparrow – One was at the ‘New’ Provincial Park September 22 (CL).

Connecticut Warbler – Perhaps the last individual of the season flew over the ‘New’ Provincial Park September 24 (SAM).

Eastern Meadowlark – The first migrants were observed in the ‘New’ Provincial Park September 24 (M.Obs.).

Rusty Blackbird – Present in small numbers throughout the area during this period (M.Obs.).

Dickcissel – One flew over Port Rowan September 22 (SAM).

Observers: Shane Abernethy (SKA), Kyle Cameron (KGC), Santiago Castro (SBC), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), Catriona Leven (CL), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Long Point Bird Observatory cooperators (LPBO).

September 23

We are now around the peak for warbler diversity and numbers for many species, with some mid-season birds starting to show up more frequently. Waterfowl diversity and numbers are slowly increasing in the area as well.

Persistent high pressure, warm temperatures, and clear skies over the past two weeks have created perfect conditions for migration with slow, steady activity on the ground. As expected with such conditions, migrant activity at Breakwater and Old Cut was relatively high, where reasonable stopover habitat exists, but the Tip was largely devoid of birds aside from a few days with unsettled weather. The Tip typically doesn’t stay silent for long and on the afternoon of September 22, Long Point’s 2nd Vermillion Flycatcher was observed! The last week of September typically provides the greatest diversity of birds as neotropical migrants are in full force and the first temperate migrants begin to show up. A few big movements and some goodies are also probable so keep your eyes on the weather and Go Birding!

Highlights:

Trumpeter Swan – One bird was observed at the Tip September 18 (KGC).

Surf Scoter – Four birds were observed at Breakwater September 14 (MTT).

Common Merganser – Nine birds were observed at Breakwater September 19 (MTT).

Horned Grebe – One was observed at Breakwater September 5 (SMJ).

Common Nighthawk – Peak migration was observed between September 6-8 at Big Creek National Wildlife Area with counts over 100 each night. A high-count of 282 were counted at Big Creek NWA September 8 (SAM, TM, RR, APT).

Eastern Whip-poor-will – Individuals were at the St. Williams Conservation Reserve (EG) and Timpf Farm (APT) September and 7 and 9, respectively.

American Golden-Plover – One was at Breakwater September 6 (SMJ).

Whimbrel – Two were observed at Breakwater September 9 (JBG, SMJ). One was observed at the Turkey Point Marina September 16 (DB,GS) and September 19 (JRA).

Long-tailed Jaeger – One was observed at the Tip September 15 (SHM).

Parasitic Jaeger – One was observed at the Tip September 16 (KGC).

Little Gull – Six were observed at the Tip September 16 (EJR, SHM).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One immature bird was observed from the ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park September 8 (SAM).

Black-crowned Night-Heron – Individuals were observed at Big Creek NWA, Old Cut, Breakwater and the Tip September 9 (SAM), September 15 (SAM), September 8 (SMJ), and September 16 (EJR), respectively.

Red-headed Woodpecker – Individuals were observed at Breakwater (4) September 15 and 16, and one was banded at the Tip September 16 (LPBO). Individuals were observed at Old Cut September 14, 15, and 21 (LPBO). Sightings away from the Point included an immature at Port Ryerse September 19 (JRA, PD, AMR, RR) and an adult at St. Williams September 22 (RR).

Peregrine Falcon – Several were observed for the period, including two at Old Cut September 8 (CPG), singles at Breakwater September 6, 10 and 19 (LPBO), Long Point Eco Adventures September 17 (DL, RR, JRA, SAM), the Tip September 18 (LPBO), and BSC HQ September 23 (PD).

Olive-sided Flycatcher – Individuals were observed at the Tip (JBF) and Breakwater (MTT) September 8 and 17 respectively.


Photo: Emma Buck

Vermilion Flycatcher – A young bird was observed at the Tip the afternoon of September 22 (SM, ERB). This is Long Point’s 2nd Vermilion Flycatcher after a long run as one of Long Point’s ‘next’ birds. The first, an adult male, was observed April 27, 2018.

Yellow-throated Vireo – One was banded at Breakwater September 11 (LPBO), and another was observed September 19 (JBG).

Tufted Titmouse – A lone individual was observed at Backus Woods September 18 (KGB).

Yellow-breasted Chat – One was observed at Old Cut September 15 (SAM)

Rusty Blackbird – Individuals were observed at Old Cut September 8 (CPG), Breakwater on September 16 (MTT), and the Tip on September 17 (KGC).

Orange-crowned Warbler – Individuals were observed at Breakwater September 9 (SMJ) and September 15 (JBG), and Turkey Point Conservation Reserve September 16 (DB, JC, GS).

Golden-winged Warbler – One was observed at Old Cut September 15 (SAM).

Connecticut Warbler – Numerous individuals were observed at all three research stations throughout the period.

Blackpoll Warbler – High counts of 325 and 255 were observed on September 11 at Breakwater and the Tip respectively (LPBO).

Dickcissel – One was observed flying over Port Rowan September 22 (SAM).

Observers: Jody Allair (JRA), David Bradley (DB), Emma Buck (ERB), James Casey (JC), Pete Davidson (PD), Brett Fried (JBF), Callum Gibson (CPG), Eric Giles (EG), Julian Grudens (JBG), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), Denis Lepage (DL), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Taylor Marshall (TM), Sam Meigs (SHM), Anne Marie Ridout (AMR), Ron Ridout (RR), Elijah Rodgers (EJR), Graham Sorenson (GS), Adam Timpf (APT), Matt Timpf (MTT), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and volunteers (LPBO)

 

September 6

The first week of September brought cooler temperatures and mainly clear skies overnight resulting in significant migration. That hasn’t necessarily translated into lots of birds on the ground. Nevertheless, passerine diversity has increased and numbers are steadily climbing. The vast swallow roosts of recent weeks have now dwindled an echo of the hundreds of thousands of just a week ago. Purple Martin numbers have also decreased from a peak of 30,000 at Old Cut to about 5,000. September can often rival May in terms of diversity and brilliance in our region, so get outside and Go Birding!

Highlights:

Trumpeter Swan – One was observed along the south shore of Long Point September 5 (JBF, MTT).

Horned Grebe – An individual was observed at the Tip September 4 (EJR).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One adult was observed at the Tip September 5 (JBF).

Eastern Whip-poor-will – One was banded at the Tip September 3 (LPBO).

American Golden Plover – One was at Breakwater September 3 (MTT) and one was observed along the south shore of Long Point September 5 (JBF, EJR).

Red Knot – An individual was at Townsend’s Sewage Lagoons September 4 (JL).

Stilt Sandpiper – Two were at Townsend’s Sewage Lagoons September 4 and three were present there September 5 (JL).

Baird’s Sandpiper – One was at the Tip August 29 (JBF, EJR).

Buff-breasted Sandpiper – One was observed along the south shore of Long Point September 5 (JBF, MTT).

Black-crowned Night-Heron – Two were at Old Cut September 4 (SMJ).

Olive-sided Flycatcher – Numerous individuals were observed at all three research stations throughout the period (LPBO).

Red-headed Woodpecker – One was observed at Breakwater September 3 (LPBO).

Winter Wren – An individual was observed at Fairnorth Farm September 1 (KB).

Northern Mockingbird – One was observed at the Tip August 29 and September 1 (LPBO).

Eastern White-crowned Sparrow – The same individual has been lingering at Old Cut throughout the period (LPBO).

Orchard Oriole – One was at Old Cut August 28 & 29 (CPG & SMJ) and another at Breakwater September 1 (MTT).

Blue-winged Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut August 31 (LPBO).

Brewster’s Warbler – This hybrid was banded at Breakwater August 31 (LPBO).

Connecticut Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut while two were banded and three more observed at the Tip September 5 (LPBO).

Hooded Warbler – One was banded at Old Cut and Breakwater August 31 (LPBO).

Blackpoll Warbler – A respectable 263 were observed at the Tip September 4 (LPBO).

Prairie Warbler – One was observed at Breakwater September 5 (MTT).

Observers: Kathryn Boothby (KB), Brett Fried (JBF), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), James Lees (JL), Elijah Rodgers (EJR), Matt Timpf (MTT), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and volunteers (LPBO)

August 30

Migration has been generally slow and steady with increasing diversity but no significant movements to speak of, except for the astonishing evening swallow and martin roosts in the Long Point wetland complex. The roost at Big Creek National Wildlife Area was in excess of 100,000 birds with numerous other roosts in the tens of thousands. More than 30,000 Purple Martin spent nights somewhere in the Long Point Crown Marsh and Company marshes west of Old Cut. Unfortunately these roosts can be difficult to observe. The best vantage points are from any of the three observation platforms in or surrounding Big Creek NWA or on the Old Cut Dyke in the half hour of twilight after sunset.

Highlights:

White-winged Scoter – Two were observed at Breakwater August 23 (ZWD).

Red-breasted Merganser – One was observed at the Tip August 23-29 (SAM, JBF).

Common Nighthawk – Birds were observed regularly at dusk from the Old Cut Dyke and Big Creek NWA (LPBO).

Whimbrel – One was observed flying over Big Creek NWA August 24 (SAM).

Ruddy Turnstone – One bird was observed at the Tip August 24, 25, 28 (SAM, JBF).

Baird’s Sandpiper – Individuals were observed at the ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park August 22, and the Tip August 25 (eBird, JBF).

White-rumped Sandpiper – One was present at Silver Lake in Port Dover August 28 (SAM).

Pectoral Sandpiper – One was present at Silver Lake in Port Dover August 28 (SAM). Yellowlegs sp. – One flock totalling 50 Lesser and 10 Greater was observed at Breakwater August 27 (MTT).

Least Bittern – Two were heard from the Old Cut Dyke August 28 (SMJ).

Peregrine Falcon – Several individuals were observed from the Tip, Big Creek NWA, Old Cut, and the ‘New’ Provincial Park (SAM, CG, JBG).

Prairie Falcon – Long Point’s second record was observed between the ‘New’ Provincial Park and Breakwater August 24 (SAM, RWW). Coincidentally, the first was observed at the Tip 23 years to the day in 1996. One observed December 18, 1976 was thought to be a bird that had recently escaped a falconer near Toronto.

Olive-sided Flycatcher – Individuals have been observed regularly at Old Cut and Breakwater (LPBO) with birds banded at Old Cut August 25 & 28 and at Breakwater August 29.

Swallows – A roost of more than 100,000 birds was present at Big Creek National Wildlife Area August 24 through 28 dwindling to about 50,000 on the 29th. The reduction may just be a result of wind conditions. The roost is comprised of Bank, Barn, and Tree swallows and very small numbers of Rough-winged and Cliff swallows. Lower numbers of Purple Martins are roosting further west,.

Purple Martin – High counts of 30,000 were observed at Old Cut (SMJ) and 12,500 at Breakwater (MTT, ZWD) August 27 and August 28 respectively.

Northern Mockingbird – Individuals were observed at all three stations this week; the Tip August 29 (EJR), Breakwater August 25 (MTT), and Old Cut August 29 (SAM).

Orchard Oriole – One was observed at Old Cut August 28 & 29 (LPBO).

Blue-winged Warbler – One was observed at Breakwater on August 23 (MTT) while another was at the Timpf Farm August 24 (APT).

Hooded Warbler – One female was banded at Breakwater August 20 (LPBO).

Prairie Warbler – One was observed at the Tip August 28 (JBF).

Observers:

Brett Fried (JBF), Callum Gibson (CG), Julian Grudens (JBG), Sean Jenniskens (SMJ), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Elijah Rodgers (EJR), Adam Timpf (APT), Matthew Timpf (MTT), Julie Webber (ZWD), Ross Wood (RWW), Long Point Observatory Staff and Volunteers (LPBO).

August 19

Trumpeter Swan – Three were observed at Turkey Point Marina July 21 (RH).

Tundra Swan – One individual lingered throughout spring and was last observed at Lee Brown WMA June 14 (KGC).

Long-tailed Duck – One male over-summered near the Tip (LPBO).

Ring-necked Pheasant – One was spotted along Norfolk County Road 60 July 17 and 18 (MVB, CJ).

White-winged Dove – One continued at the Tip until June 8 (LPBO).

Common Nighthawk – The first migrant of the season was observed at Old Cut August 18 (LPBO).

Upland Sandpiper – One flew over the ‘New’ Provincial Park August 8 (KGB).

Whimbrel – One flew over St. Williams July 21 (RR).

Baird’s Sandpiper – One was observed at Breakwater August 4 (SMJ).

Red-necked Phalarope – One was observed at the Tip August 10 (SAM).

Lesser Black-backed Gull – One was at the ‘New’ Provincial Park July 11 (SAM).

Red-throated Loon – An individual seen flying over Old Cut August 18 provided a first for August Long Point record (ER).

Common Loon – A summering group of 123 was observed on the Outer Bay June 26 (SAM).

Heron sp.- A smaller (than a Great Blue) dark heron seen flying at Highway 59 and Highway 3 in Courtland July 18 (DL) raised suspicions of Little Blue Heron.

Great Egret – A high count of 23 were observed at Breakwater August 14 (MTT, SMJ). They can be observed daily from the Old Cut dyke at dawn.

Merlin – A Simcoe nest which produced three young provided the first confirmed breeding record for Norfolk C83ounty.

Peregrine Falcon – Two were observed flying over the ‘New’ Provincial Park August 9 (KGB). One flew over Silver Lake August 10 (YOW).

Olive-sided Flycatcher – Individuals were observed at Breakwater August 11, 13 and 14 (MTT) and at Old Cut August 14 (SAM).

Bank Swallow – Large numbers can be found throughout late July and August at Long Point. High counts this year were 65,000 from the ‘New’ Long Point Provincial Park August 9 and 30,000 at Breakwater August 15 (MTT, SMJ).

Purple Martin – Up to 25,000 are estimated to be in the greater Long Point area occupying numerous smaller roosts ranging in size from 500 to 12,000 birds. There were high counts of 6,000 at Breakwater August 10 (MTT, SMJ) and 12,000 at Old Cut August 15 (ERB).

Golden-crowned Kinglet – One was observed in the Old Cut woodlot August 17 (ER, CG).


Photo: Stu Mackenize

Henslow’s Sparrow – A territorial male was present near Walsingham from early June through early August (APT). It was observed carrying food in mid-July but breeding was not otherwise confirmed. This is the first summer record at Long Point since 2005. The last migrant was at Old Cut April 29, 2011.

White-crowned Sparrow – One moulting adult was banded at Old Cut August 9 (LPBO). This is the first August record for Long Point.

Golden-winged Warbler – One male was observed at Breakwater August 14 (MTT)

Observers: Emma Buck (ERB), Kenneth Burrell (KGB), Mike Burrell (MVB), Kyle Cameron (KGC), Erica Dunn (ED), Anonymous eBirder (eBird), Callum Gisbon (CG), Randy Husson (RH), Colin Jones (CJ), Denis Lepage (DL), Stuart Mackenzie (SAM), Ron Ridout (RR), Elijah Rodgers (ER), Adam Timpf (APT), Matt Timpf (MTT) Young Ornithologist Workshop Participants (YOW), Long Point Bird Observatory Staff and Volunteers.

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Little Gull Photo: Stu Mackenzie
Long Point Bird Observatory
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