Saturday, February 28, 2009

Bird Protection Quebec's Field Trip Report for Saturday February 28th

BPQ Field Trip to Grenville Area

Five hardy souls met the two leaders at the SAQ parking lot in Grenville and for the next five hours explored the roads north and east of Grenville as well as making an owl foray into Prescott County, Ontario across the Ottawa River.

The terrifying flash freeze warnings were, as Mark Twain once said of his death, greatly exaggerated.

We began by exploring chemin Scotch where the birds were few but thehabitat gorgeous. Most of the birds were encountered near the few feeders in the area. A Pine Grosbeak let itself be heard only; otherwise there were both nuthatches, a few redpolls, jays, and chickadees.

At the bottom of chemin Scotch near where it crosses Autoroute 50, Jacques suggested we check out the area where on Wednesday we had seen six Bald Eagles in flight. Thanks to Jacques, we had great views todayof two Eagles (one magnificent adult) perched on a snag up on the ridge.There was also a White-winged Crossbill flyover.

We then went east to explore some of the more open agricultural habitattowards St-Philippe, and Martine found a Northern Shrike. It flew off, and Clémence refound it. It flew off, and then Jacques relocated it by which time everyone had had scope views at some distance.

In Ontario we went to Green Lane near Hawkesbury where an Eastern Screech-Owl has taken up residence in a Wood Duck box. Mike Beaupré and I had seen it on Wednesday, but it wasn't showing at noon today. Five of us continued to Ridge Road south of Vankleek Hill where a Northern Hawk Owl has been seen off and on since December 1st, and there it was. Thanks to a barking dog, the owl kept swiveling its head, so we had good views of its piercing glance despite the fact that it was facing away.

Merci beaucoup à Clémence, Martine, Sylvie, Jean et Michel etparticulièrement à Jacques Bouvier . . . une journée bien agréable! Temperature: from -18 to -12 Celsius . . sunny . . . cold . . . bitter wind off the Ottawa River when we scanned for ducks. Mercifully there was only one, so we didn't have to linger.

Bird of the Day: Bald Eagle in Quebec; Northern Hawk Owl in Ontario. .. who could choose?
Total Species (see below): 20
Totals are for Quebec unless otherwise specified (more or less in orderof appearance):

European Starling (3), American Crow (6), Pine Grosbeak (1), Black-capped Chickadee (57), Blue Jay (12; 2 in Ont.), White-breasted Nuthatch (6), Common Redpoll (14; 4 in Ont.), Red-breasted Nuthatch (3), Common Raven (4), Bald Eagle (2), White-winged Crossbill (3), Hairy Woodpecker (3), Brown Creeper (1)Mourning Dove (1), Downy Woodpecker (1), Northern Shrike (1), Common Merganser (1), House Sparrow (1 seen; many vocal but hidden), Rock Pigeon (12 in Ont.), Northern Hawk Owl (1 in Ont.)
Étourneau sansonnet, Corneille d'Amérique, Durbec des sapins, Mésange à tête noire, Geai bleu, Sittelle à poitrine blanche, Sizerin flammé, Sittelle à poitrine rousse, Grand corbeau, Pygargue à tête blanche, Bec-croisé bifascié, Pic chevelu, Grimpereau brun, Tourterelle triste, Pic mineur, Pie-grièche grise, Grand Harle, Moineau domestique, Pigeon biset, Chouette épervière
- Martin

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