Monday, December 03, 2007

Bird Protection Quebec's Field Trip Report - December 1st, 2007

Apologies, everyone, for this late report for our trip last Saturday (Dec 1) to Cap St Jacques. The trip was a bit of a non-event in that only Felix, new comer Pierre, and your trip leader showed up on a very cold, windy, winter morning -not exactly the late autumn conditions we were hoping for when we set the trip with the thought of finding lingering migrants! The three of us walked a few of the sheltered trails hoping to find where the birds might be hiding but sightings were few and far between.

There were some ducks on the water but the winds blowing in off the Lake of Two Mountains made for watery eyes and frozen cheeks not to mention difficulties with some ID's. The following list includes several species seen by the leader before the trip officially started and after it was officially called off at 10:00 a.m. (I went back to look at the ducks and found a few skulking passerines; had to "pad" the list somehow!)***16 species Common goldeneye - 60, Mallard - 12, Common merganser - 6, ***Ring-billed gull -12, Greater black-backed gull - 5, Mourning dove - 1, ***Hairy woodpecker - 2, Blue Jay- 2, American crow - 6, Black-capped chickadee - 10, White-breasted nuthatch -2, American robin - 10, Dark-eyed junco - 2, ***Northern cardinal - 2, ***Pine grosbeak- 2, ***American goldfinch - 2

In addition there was one interesting looking duck diving in the rapids but we could not make a positive ID under the conditions. Most resembled a 1st winter male or winter female long-tailed duck but fast flowing rapids are not habitat where I am used to seeing this species. Maybe someone with more experience with this bird can help out with regard to its habits and habitat.

Thanks to Felix and Pierre for coming out. Don't really blame anyone else for not as a warm bed was probably much more inviting. Hope Pierre will try again on a more conducive day.


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