Another of the ducks we saw while out and about on Tuesday. It was riding the waves on Rondeau Bay.
Anas strepera We don’t tend to think of ducks as pirates, but Gadwall often snatch food from diving ducks as they surface. This widespread, adaptable duck has dramatically increased in numbers in North America since the 1980s. source - https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Gadwall/lifehistory
Spotted this American Coot in a drainage ditch, seems he know the hokey pokey.
"Now put your right foot in
Your right foot out
Right foot in
Then you shake it all about"
Although it swims like a duck, the American Coot does not have webbed feet like a duck. Instead, each one of the coot’s long toes has broad lobes of skin that help it kick through the water. The broad lobes fold back each time the bird lifts its foot, so it doesn’t impede walking on dry land, though it supports the bird’s weight on mucky ground.
A number of ducks were in a small cove at the shore due to big waves on the bay.
There was a group of wigeon that stayed reasonably close to shore giving me a photo op.
The American Wigeon's short bill enables it to exert more force at the bill tip than other dabbling ducks, thus permitting efficient dislodging and plucking of vegetation.
Taken at the Canadian Raptor Conservancy facility on a rainy day.
Great Horned Owls are fierce predators that can take large prey, including raptors such as Ospreys, Peregrine Falcons, Prairie Falcons, and other owls. They also eat much smaller items such as rodents, frogs, and scorpions.
Two of more than 40 horned grebes we saw Oct 26 while boating on Rondeau Bay..
We tend to see them during spring and fall.
A sleeping or resting Horned Grebe puts its neck on its back with its head off to one side and facing forward. It keeps one foot tucked up under a wing and uses the other one to maneuver in the water. Having one foot up under a wing makes it float with one "high" side and one "low" side.
We followed up on a rare bird posting and were lucky enough to find the bird within minutes of arriving.
Long distance shots until the bird flew up and went west over Lake Erie.
Pelican chicks can crawl by 1 to 2 weeks of age. By 3 weeks they can walk with their body off the ground and can swim as soon as they can get to water. Older chicks move up to running, then running with flapping their wings, and by the age of 9 to 10 weeks, they can fly.
One of several sparrow species that visited the yard this fall.
White Throated Sparrow. Zonotrichia albicollis.
White-throated Sparrows stay near the ground, scratching through leaves in search of food, often in flocks. You may see them low in bushes as well, particularly in spring when they eat fresh buds. White-throated Sparrows sing their distinctive songs frequently, even in winter.
The turtles were out in good numbers grabbing a few rays when we were out on the boat the other day. Since then the weather has turned, bir waves and cold temperatures so they are probably gone for the year.
I think it looks very prehistoric poking out of the weeds.
Emydoidea blandingii This species hibernates in the soft bottoms of water bodies. Particularly in the spring, the Blanding’s turtle basks on rocks, logs or substrates in sunny locations.
Bullfrogs breed later than most other frogs, usually from mid-June to late July on warm, humid or rainy nights. The egg masses may contain up to 20,000 eggs and, when first laid, spread out over the surface of the water. Bullfrog tadpoles, which grow for up to three years before changing into frogs, eat suspended matter, organic debris, algae, plant tissue and small aquatic invertebrates. source - https://www.ontarionature.org/…/repti…/american_bullfrog.php
Setophaga pensylvanica On the wintering grounds in Central America the Chestnut-sided Warbler joins in mixed-species foraging flocks with the resident antwrens and tropical warblers. An individual warbler will return to the same area in subsequent years, joining back up with the same foraging flock it associated with the year before. Source - https://www.allaboutbirds.org/…/Chestnut-sided_…/lifehistory
This duck reminds me of he bath time rubber ducky with its cocked tail and relatively large head.
I think this bird was injured as it didn't climb of the mound and swim/fly away.
It is duck hunting season.
Ruddy Ducks lay big, white, pebbly-textured eggs—the largest of all duck eggs relative to body size. Energetically expensive to produce, the eggs hatch into well-developed ducklings that require only a short period of care.
Lots of birds still coming to the pond including this Eastern Towhee.
Eastern Towhees tend to be pretty solitary, and they use a number of threat displays to tell other towhees they’re not welcome. You may see contentious males lift, spread, or droop one or both wings, fan their tails, or flick their tails to show off the white spots at the corners. Studies have shown that male towhees tend to defend territories many times larger than needed simply to provide food.
This close and no closer. It is always a challenge to try to figure out what the comfort zone of an animal is. Ideally I try to get a photo without disturbing the subject. We came a little too close for comfort with this pied-billed grebe.
Podilymbus podiceps Part bird, part submarine, the Pied-billed Grebe is common across much of North America. These small brown birds have unusually thick bills that turn silver and black in summer. These expert divers inhabit sluggish rivers, freshwater marshes, lakes, and estuaries. They use their chunky bills to kill and eat large crustaceans along with a great variety of fish, amphibians, insects, and other invertebrates. Rarely seen in flight and often hidden amid vegetation, Pied-billed Grebes announce their presence with loud, far-reaching calls. source - https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Pied-billed_Grebe/id
This young sapsucker came to the pond for a minute then left without drinking or bathing. Probably had something to do with the 3 blue jays that came in squawking loudly.
Sphyrapicus varius The sapwells made by Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers attract hummingbirds, which also feed off the sap flowing from the tree. In some parts of Canada, Ruby-throated Hummingbirds rely so much on sapwells that they time their spring migration with the arrival of sapsuckers. Other birds as well as bats and porcupines also visit sapsucker sapwells. source - https://www.allaboutbirds.org/…/Yellow-bellied_…/lifehistory
Normally we see groupings or rusty blackbirds, this day just one.
It's a start.
Like most members of the blackbird family, the Rusty Blackbird undergoes only one molt per year. The change in appearance between winter and summer results from the rust-colored feather tips of "winter plumage" wearing off and leaving behind the smooth black or gray "breeding plumage."
We have at least two titmice coming into the feeders and the pond.
They have been around but not frequent visitors this summer.
Unlike many chickadees, Tufted Titmouse pairs do not gather into larger flocks outside the breeding season. Instead, most remain on the territory as a pair. Frequently one of their young from that year remains with them, and occasionally other juveniles from other places will join them. Rarely a young titmouse remains with its parents into the breeding season and will help them raise the next year's brood.
Normally we don't have red-breasted nuthatches in the summer.
They are around in the cooler weather looking for a quick meal.
The cold front that came through Wednesday night brought this one to the pond.
The Red-breasted Nuthatch collects resin globules from coniferous trees and plasters them around the entrance of its nest hole. It may carry the resin in its bill or on pieces of bark that it uses as an applicator. The male puts the resin primarily around the outside of the hole while the female puts it around the inside. The resin may help to keep out predators or competitors. The nuthatch avoids the resin by diving directly through the hole.
Another shot taken from the pontoon boat. It was busy having a bath and I don't think it noticed the boat as we drifted in.
Green Herons usually hunt by wading in shallow water, but occasionally they dive for deep-water prey and need to swim back to shore—probably with help from the webs between their middle and outer toes. One juvenile heron was seen swimming gracefully for more than 60 feet, sitting upright “like a little swan,” according to one observer. source - https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Green_Heron/lifehistory
A really fast little bird, it was tearing through the hedge snapping up food.
It paused just long enough to get a reasonably good shot.
It bounces through the pond but doesn't linger for a bath.
Regulus calendula The Ruby-crowned Kinglet is a tiny bird that lays a very large clutch of eggs—there can be up to 12 in a single nest. Although the eggs themselves weigh only about a fiftieth of an ounce, an entire clutch can weigh as much as the female herself. source -https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Ruby-crowned_Kinglet/lifehistory
Our favourite bird spotter, Steve, knocked on the door this morning to tell us there was an Eurasian Collared Dove just down there road.
He gave us directions and then made sure we found the dove where it wa sitting high in a tree.
Not a lifer but still a rare sight around here.
The Eurasian Collared-Dove’s species name, decaocto, comes from Greek mythology. Decaocto was a servant girl transformed into a dove by the gods to escape her unhappy treatment; the dove’s mournful cry recalls her former life.
We have had a number of Carolina wrens in the yard for the past 2 weeks.
Loud singers first thing in the morning.
The Carolina Wren is sensitive to cold weather, with the northern populations decreasing markedly after severe winters. The gradually increasing winter temperatures over the last century may have been responsible for the northward range expansion seen in the mid-1900s.
At the corner of the marina and the main channel are two old pilings.
Spotted this kingfisher monitoring the water nearby. Just couldn't get close enough for a real close up, this photo is heavily cropped.
Megaceryle alcyon Belted Kingfishers are stocky, large-headed birds with a shaggy crest on the top and back of the head and a straight, thick, pointed bill. Their legs are short and their tails are medium length and square-tipped. source - https://www.allaboutbirds.org/…/Belted_Kingfish…/lifehistory
We don't often see ovenbirds and then usually just glimpses.
Today was different, we had one visit and perch in the open.
I have so many good photos I didn't know which one to pick.
This is one of the best ovenbird photos I took.
On its breeding ground, the Ovenbird divides up the forest environment with the other warblers of the forest floor. The Ovenbird uses the uplands and moderately sloped areas, the Worm-eating Warbler uses the steep slopes, and the Louisiana Waterthrush and the Kentucky Warbler use the low-lying areas.
Another of the pond visitors, a Philadelphia Vireo.
Unlike most birds that come to our pond vireos do a splash and dash bath. They sit in the bush above the pond, fly down, hit the water and go straight back up to the bush. Vireo philadelphicus A bird of young deciduous woods, the Philadelphia Vireo is the most northernly breeding species of vireo. It is often overlooked because its more common relative, the Red-eyed Vireo lives in the same areas and gets most of the attention. source -https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Philadelphia_Vireo/lifehistory