Saturday, July 11, 2009

Summer Series of Birding 2009 - Trip #3 Report

12 birders enjoyed a lengthy, almost 4 hour walk around the grounds of the Montreal Botanical Gardens this morning. The weather was great; warm with a nice breeze and mostly sunny skies. Clouds began to roll in, as forecast, as we wrapped up the morning.

We probably spent as much time enjoying the plants, flowers and trees as we did in watching the birdlife. However, certainly one of the highlights of the day was the spectacular show being staged by the Cooper's Hawk family of seven. Photo taken by Chuck Kling. Click to enlarge and to see other photos

5 young birds were spread throughout a group of trees opposite the Shade Garden, awaiting the delivery of food from their parents. All five were easily visible, often flattened out on branches, relaxing in the shade, waiting for their parents to arrive with food. When food did arrive, the excitement began. Space was at a premium with a large throng of photographers present looking for that "special photo op".

At the end of the morning, we saw one of the adults seemingly taking a bit of break, perched in a tree quietly near the restaurant building.

We were also quite surprised to find a pair of Common Ravens right at the start of the outing flying in tandem around the Olympic Stadium tower and then heading off to the west.

We completed the day with 25 species. Our list follows below. A special thanks to Jane Atkinson for acting as our special tour guide around the Gardens, and providing some interesting stories, particularly her involvement in the creation of one of the major Alpine Garden exhibit areas.

Thanks to all who participated in a fun and relaxing outing. Here are the bird celebrities of the day.

Mallard (50), Pied-billed Grebe (1), Cooper's Hawk (6 or 7 depending on whether
we saw one or two of the adults), Ring-billed Gull (12) Rock Pigeon (10),
Chimney Swift (6), Downy Woodpecker (2), Warbling Vireo (1), Red-eyed Vireo (6), American Crow (12), Common Raven (2), Black-capped Chickadee (20),
White-breasted Nuthatch (1), American Robin (25), Cedar Waxwing (12), Yellow
Warbler (1), Chipping Sparrow (20), Song Sparrow (12), Northern Cardinal (1),
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (1), Red-winged Blackbird (24), Common Grackle (1), House Finch (6), American Goldfinch (24), House Sparrow (4)
- Sheldon

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