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|A Report from birdtours.co.uk|
Canada- Quebec and Ontario, July 2, 2001 to July 29, 2001,
This trip was not a birding trip, but rather a family holiday with some birding hours thrown in, and outside those hours always keeping an eye on what was flying around. The party consisted of my wife Marlies, who likes to be outdoors, but is not interested in the details ("a bird is a bird"), and our 16-year old twins, son Michel, who has no interest at all in birds ("where is the internet cafe?"), and daughter Wendy, who accompanied me on most of the birding walks, but who wants to keep that secret, as she thinks it diminishes her chances to meet interesting boys ("I don't carry binoculars when there are boys"). She keeps a list, as long as Dad does the work to look them up in the field guides. But she is good in pointing out birds which I hadn't discovered yet, and she has better ears than me, and two see more than one. We live in Europe, in the south of the Netherlands.
I don't consider myself an experienced birder, far from that, as normally my only serious birdwatching is done when on holiday. For the rest of the year my sparetime is mostly occupied by other things, so I have to learn and to study on the spot. Some Canadian and American birders will probably laugh about all the effort I sometimes have to spend at identifying for them common birds, but that is to be expected when you visit a different continent. I will probably also never reach the number of species the "professionals" are seeing at the same spot, but it still gives me a lot of pleasure.
I made a few pictures of some of the birds we saw. I have a Nikon F90 camera, and for birds I normally use a 300 mm lens, which is not enough for most of them. Sometimes I use a converter, which makes it a 600 mm lens, which is still not enough and for which I need much more light, or I have to use a faster film which adds a lot to the grain. So I normally make pictures only to have a visual proof of what I saw, or I use a picture to verify a bird at home, when I cannot find it out in the field. Nevertheless I have a few included here.
I had been to Canada a few more times during the last few years, also looking at the birds during those visits, so some birds on this trip were reasonably familiar to me now, but for many I had to refresh my knowledge again, and consult the field guides heavily.
Books and CDs used
Peterson Field Guides - Eastern Birds, Roger Tory Peterson : heavily used, and always taken when out in the field.
Golden - Birds of North America, Robbins / Bruun / Zim : only used a few times to have some more illustrations available for comparison.
Eastern Birds, John Farrand : used once or twice only to compare something, although seeing photos of the birds instead of drawings can give some additional value now and then.
CD : Les oiseaux de nos jardins, Lang Elliott : used a lot in the camper (which had a CD-player) to verify songs.
CD : Les Sons de nos Forets, Lang Elliott / Ted Mack : also used a lot.
In a Montreal bookshop I found a large selection of bird books, and after a long deliberation I bought :
National Audubon Society - The Sibley Guide to Birds, David Allen Sibley : used quite a few times, as the book is very useful to check other plumages then the breeding ones, has good maps, and is in general very comprehensive, but for me too large to take out in the field.
American Bird Conservancy's Field Guide - All the Birds of North America, Jack Griggs : a book with a different approach, very useful, with lots of educating stories and beautiful illustrations, used quite a lot as well.
We flew from Amsterdam to London-Heathrow with British Midland, and from Heathrow to Montreal-Dorval by Air Canada. In Montreal we picked-up a camper from Cruise Canada, and that was our transport for the rest of the trip, except for a trainride from Cochrane to Moosonee v.v. The return flights were the same, but in the opposite direction.
Hotel and campings
July 2 Montreal-Dorval, Hilton Montreal Dorval Aeroport
July 3 Oka, Parc d'Oka
July 4 same
July 5 St.Philippe de Laprairie, Montreal South KOA
July 6 same
July 7 same
July 8 Mont St.Hilaire, Camping Laurier
July 9 Vaudreuil-Dorion (Hudson), Camping d'Aoust
July 10 same
July 11 Nepean, Ottawa-Nepean Municipal Tent and Trailer Park
July 12 Smiths Falls, Otter Lake Camping
July 13 Bowmanville, Darlington Provincial Park
July 14 same
July 15 same
July 16 Niagara Falls, Niagara Falls KOA
July 17 same
July 18 same
July 19 Bradford, Yogi Bear's Jelly Park
July 20 Astorville, Nosbonsing Marina Trailer park
July 21 Cochrane, Greenland Provincial Park
July 22 Cochrane, Drury Park
July 23 same
July 24 Larder Lake, Raven Beach Park
July 25 Mattawa, Sid Turcotte Park
July 26 L'Ange-Gardien, Camping Ange Gardien
July 27 Laval-Ste.Dorothee, Parc Mont-Lava
July 28 departing for home
July 29 arriving at home
Note : the first appearance of a bird species on this trip is underlined.
July 2. Our expectations are high when we leave the plane, and we guess that it should be possible to spot around 60 different species during this holiday. When we leave the terminal to await the shuttle bus to the airport hotel, the first birds are spotted, the familiar House Sparrow.
Later on, from the window of our hotel room, we see a group of European Starlings with quite some juveniles, and an American Robin, all exploring the lawns around the hotel. We note that the colors of the Robin are different, but that it otherwise behaves exactly like our familiar European Blackbird.
I go out to visit an aircraft viewing area (I guess this is "politically incorrect"), which has a large garbage bin. A couple of gulls are exploring the bin, throwing everything out which they have inspected. They will not be loved for this behaviour, and we hear that the airport authorities are blaming the spectators for throwing their garbage everywhere, while in fact the gulls (and crows) are doing that. They are very close, and the black ring encircling their bills makes them easily recognisable as Ring-billed Gulls. A few swallows fly around, dark above, light below, long forked tail. A quick glance in the field guide confirms that they can be nothing else but the Barn Swallow.
July 3. Next morning I make a little walk through the hotel garden, and stop to look at a small fountain, when suddenly a yellow bird with some rusty breast stripes lands beside me on the fountain. Apparently the bird didn't realize that I was standing there, and flies away again when it notices me. But from previous visits to Canada I have recognized it immediately as a Yellow Warbler.
We leave the hotel to pick up our camper, and in the late afternoon we drive to our first camping, situated in the Parc d'Oka. On the way we see several black birds with red and yellow epaulets, which are the common Red-winged Blackbirds,and a dove with a long tail. This is also an easy one, as there is, except for the Feral Pigeon, only one dove species in this area, the Mourning Dove. The camping is beautifully situated in a wooded area in a nature reserve, and is so spacious that other campers are barely seen from your spot. Although a few birds are heard, non is seen, as all the trees are fully leafed, making visual detection very difficult.
July 4. The day is spent with shopping and hanging around, noting only some previously seen common species.
July 5. Next day the sun is shining and we go to the beach to catch some sun. The sandy beach is bordering the camping on the Baie d'Oka, part of the Lac des Deux Montagnes at the end of the Riviere des Outaouais (= Ottawa River). Quite a few Ring-billed Gulls are around (from now on mentioned as RBGs), which come sit within one meter distance, after we threw a few peanuts at them. A solitary tern is spotted, black-capped, red-billed, and with darker wingtips, making it a Common Tern, which should be the only comparable one that should be present here this time of the year anyway. A Mallard in eclipse plumage appears briefly, swimming from the cover next to the beach. On the car parking, an American Crow is seen walking around, and others are heard in the trees.
In the afternoon we visit the Parc d'Oka nature reserve proper, which is next to the camping. It has a 3 km footpath through the woods, and at the swampy water edge there is an observation tower and a wooden platform leading quite far out into the reeds and the water of La Grande Baie. Walking through the woods, a little band of chickadees is heard, and, a little bit later, also spotted. They are black-capped, and there is only one species of chickadee in this area according to the field guide, so they are Black-capped Chickadees. In a clearing an all-over blue songbird is seen, an Indigo Bunting, and nearby a brown one which defies identification, but might be the female.
We climb the observation tower to have a good view over the area, and many birds are spotted over the water. A Yellow Warbler flashes in front of us, and a Great Blue Heron lands nearby.After having enjoyed the view for a while we descend again and walk the platform. A lot of black-headed terns dart around, which, after a quick consultation of the field guide, are confirmed as Black Terns
a few Great Blue Herons are around, and many Red-winged Blackbirds, including the very different streaked females, are exploring the water plants. A lot of swallows hunt around, but before investigating these, our attention is drawn to a bird further away over the water : it is an easily recognisable male Belted Kingfisher, hovering before plunging down into the water for prey. Now back to the swallows, we recognize the Barn Swallow, but there are also some with a light rump, some of which come down on the boardwalk to rest. Others don't have the light rump, but are completely shiny dark above, and light below, but not with the long forktail of the Barn Swallow. A study of the field guide reveals them to be Cliff Swallows and Tree Swallows. Not bad. This is a very nice place to watch birds, but as the rest of the family is waiting for us, we have unfortunately to return to the camper. On the way back we spot a small woodpecker, and, as I knew from a previous visit what to look for, the red spot on the head, the white throat and the small bill give it away as a Downy Woodpecker. Almost at the end of the path we spot a small songbird. We point the binoculars and try to memorize all its features as quickly as possible, before it disappears again. A yellow cap, black eyebrow stripe, white throat and breast, brown on the flanks, a warbler bill : this surely is a new bird for my lifelist ! A careful study of the field guide indicates that we have noted everything we need to identify it : it can be nothing else but a Chestnut-sided Warbler
After this excitement we return to the camper on the parking and we hear a Red-eyed Vireo (we know the easily recognisable song from the CDs). Although we stand next to the tree from where it is singing, we don't discover it in the foliage. As we only count a bird as we have visually seen it, the vireo is not (yet) strengthening our list. Although I had reckoned to see more birds here at Oka, seen previous visits but which were in different months, it was still quite rewarding. We are now at 20 species.
We drive to our next camping at St.Philippe, east of Montreal. On the way we see our first Feral Pigeon, how exciting. The camping is mainly an open field with a lot of low trees. Some birds are singing from some higher trees, and flying around above the trees, continually calling. It doesn't take long before we have a good view at them, and they are easily identifiable as the handsome yellow and black American Goldfinch. While reading a book, but also keeping an eye at any movement, my attention is drawn to a bird climbing down a tree headfirst : a nuthatch. It has a white breast, a black cap, and no eyeline : the White-breasted Nuthatch. I quickly call my daughter from the camper, so she can add it to her list as well. Another bird is inspecting the base of some trees. It is a sparrow, or, in other words, a "brown job", and a good study is necessary as there are so many species of sparrows in America. It doesn't fly away quickly, so we have the time to note the all-important head marks and the rest of the colouring. It has no streaks on the breast, a rufous cap, a white eyebrow, and a black eyeline. It is quickly found in the book as a Chipping Sparrow. Further we see RBGs overhead, and some Robins, House Sparrows, and a Mourning Dove.
July 6. We visit the city centre of Montreal, where we see large numbers of House Sparrows, RBGs, and Feral Pigeons.
July 7. We discover that there is a nice area behind the camping, reasonably open, but with many bushes and scattered lower trees. We make a stroll around, and see some Barn Swallows and a Yellow Warbler. A few Robins and the ubiquitous Red-winged Blackbirds are around, and we sit down at the edge of a pond to see what will happen. We see and hear a Crow, which to us sounds a bit like a barking dog, a sound very different from the European variety, although visually we don't see any difference. We see also some Tree Swallows, and then a small crested bird appears, a waxwing. A check in the field guide reveals that there are two waxwing varieties in Canada, but the Bohemian has white and yellow markings on the wing, which ours is lacking, and the Bohemian shouldn't be in this area at this time of the year, so it is labelled as a Cedar Waxwing. A second one is joining it, and we have some good views of this beautiful bird. Nearby on a dead tree, a bird is singing, and, oh no, it is one of those difficult brown jobs again. This one has a streaked breast, with a clear black spot, a reasonably long tail, and no really conspicuous markings. After a lengthy study of the guide, we conclude that it is a Song Sparrow.
Then a very, and I mean a very, small bird flies by, and lands on another dead tree branch hanging over the pond. Yes, it is a hummingbird ! As there is only one species of hummingbird coming into eastern Canada, it is identified as the Ruby-throated Hummingbird. How nice to see. After this beauty we continue our walk and hear a sound like a mewing cat. We scan the scrub from where the sound is coming from, and suddenly the bird appears. We have a good view of it, even noting the chestnut undertail coverts, and it is quickly identified as a Gray Catbird. In an open area we spot our first Common Grackles, a bird we are familiar with, and some male and female Brown-headed Cowbirds, which we also remember from previous visits to Canada. In a bushy corner we see our Catbird again, the Waxwings, and an active gaggle of Black-capped Chickadees. We hear the characteristic sound of the Veery, further away, but don't expect to find it between the leaves. Then we see a bird flying from a tree, and quickly returning to it : clearly a flycatcher. Now this can be a difficult one. As the bird stays around we can have a good look at it, and we have the time to compare it with the field guide. Happily it has no white eye-ring, so we can forget the difficult "Empidonax" flycatchers. It doesn't have kingbird markings, so what remains for this area are the Eastern Phoebe, the Eastern Wood-Pewee, or the Olive-sided Flycatcher. It lacks the dark chest patches and white wing tufts of the Olive-sided, but it has two clear white wing bars. This makes it the Eastern Wood-Pewee.
Apparently the Eastern Phoebe is regularly bobbing its tail, which this one doesn't, and also the voice is compliant for the Eastern Wood-Pewee. Heading back to the camping we hear the Veery again, but now very close. We scrutinize the bushes, but don't see it. Then suddenly a thrush-like bird flies to the other side of the path, and the sound now comes from there : we have actually seen a Veery, although very short ! Having added 8 species to our list on this walk, we return very satisfied to the camping.
In the afternoon we bring a visit to the Lachine Rapids, a wild water part of the St.Lawrence River, on Montreal island south of the city centre. A bird sanctuary is next to it, in a swampy area, which is always interesting to visit as I know from previous trips. Part of it is however closed right now while draglines and shovelers are reshaping part of the surrounding terrain. A muskrat is very tame, eating clover, and it continues eating even when we squat next to it. There are lots of Red-winged Blackbirds which can be studied at close quarters. A Great Blue Heron.
stands close by. A Common Tern is fishing, and there are of course lots of RBGs around. An American Goldfinch is also spotted. Robins are feeding on the lawns next to the sanctuary. But now to the ducks. There are many of them around, but they are already in eclipse plumage, or almost so. Happily I had spent some time studying eclipse ducks during an earlier visit to Canada in a september month, so I know roughly what to look for. Most of the ducks are found to be Mallards, as expected. Some of the males still have some green patches on the neck, but a lot of them are in full eclipse colours. Then we spot a much darker one between them : an American Black Duck .
Although it is resting, the purple speculum is clearly visible. Further away on the water there are several American Wigeons .
some of them with young. On a rock near the Wigeons, we see a small sandpiper. It is bobbing its tail, and it has a spotted breast, so this is the common Spotted Sandpiper. A cormorant flies over low. As we are not on the coast, this can only be the Double-crested Cormorant. Unfortunately we have only half an hour to explore this area, and it is time to return. Near the entrance we see a young man and woman with a telescope and a field guide. As it is never a bad idea to confirm your sightings with a local expert, we start talking. They explain to us that they are actually working here : it is their duty to promote nature by letting visiting people and kids look through the telescope, explain what they are seeing, and answer their questions. What a nice initiative ! The girl confirms all our sightings, we only seem to have missed one or more Gadwalls. She asks if we have seen the night heron. We say no, and then, almost at the same moment, she says : oh look, there it comes. It flies directly to us, and lands very close, within 5 m! It is a Black-crowned Night-Heron.
and I carefully take out my camera and use the opportunity to make a few photos. Then it slowly walks away, and disappears between the plants. What a beautiful surprise. Although a longer visit would surely have delivered some more species, we are glad with the 12 we saw, and our total stands now at 37.
July 8. We leave our camping at St.Philippe, and drive to the Beauharnois dam, a huge hydro-electric plant in the St.Lawrence River, with a lock in the St.Lawrence Seaway next to it. We park at the large open grass and clover area with a good view of the dam, the lock, and the St.Lawrence. Hundreds, if not thousands of gulls are present at some grassland areas in front of the dam, but they are too far away to identify. When we eat something, a few RBGs get curious, and land not far from us. When we give them something to eat, more and more of them come over to us. Better stop this feeding before the whole army drops down on us. It is surprising again, how close the birds come sit with you. The red eyering is very noticeable. Although the Herring Gull should be present here as well according to the field guide, we still haven't seen any, although we keep a constant lookout for them. On the grass and clover, some Starlings, Red-winged Blackbirds, and Brown-headed Cowbids go about their business, and some House Sparrows, Feral Pigeons, and Barn Swallows are present in the lock area. A Common Tern inspects the fast flowing water from the hydro-electric power station. A group of Cliff Swallows.
find a puddle of water very interesting, and land there all the time, fluttering their wings upright. A Cormorant flies by, and in a bush a streaky brown bird is singing. It is another Song Sparrow, which we are now familiar with. But another two sparrows land at the puddle. They have noticeably shorter tails. I note some yellowish on the face, and I recognize them as Savannah Sparrows, a bird I was able to study at close quarters during a previous visit. Then a flycatcher draws our attention. I don't see any white on its tail, which would have made it an Eastern Kingbird, so I start consulting the guide. I look at the bird again, but now it has a white border at the tail, I wonder how I could have missed that the first time. So it is an Eastern Kingbird, preying from a bush, and also hawking low over the clover fields.
We leave the dam for some sightseeing in the Dorion-Hudson-Rigaud area. At the Hudson-Oka ferry we hear a bird in the tall trees, which we suspect could be a jay. Suddenly a blue bird flies over the road, and a quick focus with the binoculars confirms it indeed to be the Blue Jay. Another bird flies over to the top of another tree, quickly jumping from branch to branch. Before I could focus it has disappeared again. Although I am almost sure it was a Northern Flicker, we don't note it, as we didn't see it good enough to confirm it.
It is already dark when we arrive at our next camping in Mont St.Hilaire, east of Montreal, at the foot of the mountain with the same name.
July 9. In the morning we have a quick look at the birds at or near the camping : nothing special, RBGs, Robins, Starlings, Red-winged Blackbirds, Mourning Doves, Goldfinches, and Grackles, but a Gray Catbird is more interesting. We see some swallows flying around which I suspect to be Cliff Swallows, but when they land on some wires, I see they have breast bands. So in fact we are looking at Bank Swallows.Next we go to the Mont St.Hilaire, which stands alone 400 m high in the otherwise flat area. It is mainly a nature reserve covered with mature forest with some signposted trails, and a lake, Lac Hertel, not far from the visitors center. We first go to the lake, and then take the Pain du Sucre route through the woods. In the picknick area on the lakeshore, we see a Robin, some Goldfinches, a Waxwing, and some Chickadees. However, during the 3.5 km walk to the Pain du Sucre, we see some squirrels and chipmunks, but not a single bird. We only hear a few, like the Ovenbird and the Red-eyed Vireo, and some which we don't recognize. After a steep climb we arrive at the Pain du Sucre rocks, one of the highest points at around 400 m, and have a beautiful view over the whole area. Then we finally see a bird, and an interesting one for Canada, a soaring Turkey Vulture, which flies at our level, and sometimes even below us. Then, below, another bird appears in a fast glide. It is clearly another raptor. It is brown above, with slighly darker wingtips, and has a white band at the tail tip. Seen the fast way of gliding it should be a falcon, but it has disappeared already before we can take a second look. Some minutes later however, we spot it again, together with a second one, but now far below us, and only for a few seconds. The field guide does not give us a 100% sure solution, so we will have to study the other guides which we keep in the camper. A porcupine climbs up on our rock, and has a look at us.
As with many Canadian animals, it comes very close. We had never seen one before, and we didn't know they were soooo slooow. After a while it climbs backwards from the rock again, a comic sight. We also descend again and start our hike back. Again we don't see any bird in the fully leafed woods, and not only that, we are overtaken by a heavy thunderstorm and finally arrive back at the camper soaking wet. A very disappointing trip birdwise, we haven't seen any woodpecker, nuthatch, wren, or thrush! In the camper we study all our reference material, and we conclude that the falcons can be nothing else but female or juvenile Merlins, or juvenile Peregrine Falcons. Seen the size we list them, with some reservations,as Peregrine Falcons. Later on, we learn that Peregrines actually breed at Mont St.Hilaire, and that finally takes our reservations away. We depart to our next camping, which is officially in Vaudreuil-Dorion, but is in fact very close to Hudson.
July 10. Today we stay at the camping for a relaxing day of doing nothing. The camping is in a wooded area with large old trees. Robins are feeding on the ground. Crows are in the treetops, easily recognisable by their "Keeaw, keeaw, keeaw" call, or are sedately walking over the camping when it is quiet. Chickadees pass by regularly to scan the trees and bushes and come within a few metres. Goldfinches are darting around over the top of the trees continuously putcheebubupping, or sometimes singing in a tree. A Grackle is wandering around, learning a young how to find food, and we see a nuthatch. But this one is much smaller then the one we saw previously, and it looks like its breast has a reddish hue. We quickly consult the field guide, and see that we have to look if it has a black line through the eye. It indeed has, so we can note a Red-breasted Nuthatch.
July 11. We depart Hudson in Quebec for Ottawa in Ontario. We know by now which birds are familiar on roadsides. In the first place the conspicuous Red-winged Blackbird, but also Starlings, Crows, Grackles, Robins, Mourning Doves, and (flying) RBGs. On parkings with services you can see House Sparrows, and on one of these we spot our first Killdeer, which we had expected to see much earlier.
We will spend the night at a camping in Nepean, on the westside of Ottawa, which has some open spaces, but also lots of brush and lower trees. RBGs fly around (where do they not ?), two Mourning Doves come close to our camper, and some Chickadees hop from tree to tree, regularly calling to keep contact with each other. A Red-eyed Vireo is continuously singing (if that is the word) its monotonous phrases. As the trees are low, and the bird is close, we make an effort to finally see one, and this time the search is succesful. We caught it long enough in the binoculars to see its features, and as it moves through the leaves, the sun is for a short moment at such an angle with the bird's eye, that even the red of it is clearly visible !
July 12. When we wake up we hear the Mourning Doves, and we cannot but agree that they are aptly named. They have indeed a very sad sound, and you really feel pity on them ! Just before leaving our camping spot, we see a flycatcher going around between the branches, so we turn off the engine again. Although we cannot see all the features, the yellow belly, and the clearly visible brown wingstripe identify it as a Great Crested Flycatcher.
Just before dark we arrive at a small camping at the shore of Otter Lake, near the town of Smiths Falls. Lying in bed, we suddenly hear the weird, but beautiful yodeling sound of a loon. This surprises us, as we expected them actually further north.
July 13. Next morning we sit for half an hour at the lakeshore to see what is happening. A Song Sparrow sings its song at the water edge, a Robin sings in a higher tree, a Mourning Dove walks on the ground, some Goldfinches flit around, a Grackle inspects some rubbish at the waterline, and at the other side of an inlet, we see a Great Blue Heron sedately wading along the reeds. As everywhere, lots of RBGs fly around, but then we see one that behaves different. We point the binoculars, and note a black cap and a heavy red bill, so it's not a gull, but a big Caspian Tern. Far out at the lake we see a black-headed gull, and we consult the field guide to see which features identify which species. We try to find it again, but bad luck, it has disappeared, and we didn't look good enough at the wing pattern to identify it. We guess that it is a Bonaparte's Gull, but as we are not totally sure, we don't note it on the list. It proves again, that you first have to note all the details, and only then consult the book! Looking over the lake again, we suddenly spot a swimming bird in front of us, that we hadn't seen approaching : it is just there. It is a Common Loon, which is a bird I always love to see. Most of the body stays under water, but the head and neck are clearly visible. It doesn't stay long at the surface, and remains under water for quite a long time, before it appears again at an unpredictable spot. A very rewarding sight to see this bird hunting.
After this we depart and head south in the direction of Toronto. On the way we spot twice a buteo, but we cannot stop, nor identify them while driving, although we guess they might be Red-tailed Hawks. For a rest we turn off the main road, and arrive at a beautiful birding spot on a weedy lake near Cushendall, which is close to Kingston on Lake Ontario. My wife almost gets a heart attack when a snake jumps away when she steps out of the camper. And she was already deadly afraid for snakes ! A careful investigation reveals that the place is infested by snakes, large dark ones, 80 cm or so, with a faint marking,
and smaller ones with black and yellow longitudinal stripes.
The black ones also swim in the water.
As we are not familiar with Canadian snakes, and don't know if they are venomous, we are careful not to step on them while looking at the birds. We notice that they can be very fast , and even jump a meter high. They are not really afraid of us, because they keep hanging around. But now to the birds.
There are many young Tree swallows sitting on the electricity wires,
and also Barn Swallows are hunting over the water, now and then taking a splash into the water. A Yellow Warbler and an American Goldfinch are in the bushes, and the ubiquitous Red-winged Blackbirds are present as well. An unidentified and unseen bird sings somewhere between the waterplants, and in another corner, an Eastern Kingbird is catching insects on the fly. Some Black Terns flit around the water, and when a Caspian Tern appears, they attack it, and even manage to chase it away. Between the water-lilies we detect a Mallard with young, and while looking at them we see something at the reed edge behind them, which looks like a bird. It has brown stripes, and two more or less black ones higher up, but strangely there is no head visible. Could this be one of the elusive American Bitterns? After 10 minutes or so, it finally moves, shows its head, and starts slowly walking along the plants. It indeed is an American Bittern, and it is also our fiftieth species, a very welcome sight indeed.
Having really enjoyed this spot, we continue our journey to Darlington Park, near Oshawa on Lake Ontario, one of the Great Lakes. But before arriving there, we make a stop at a highway parking place between a group of about 20 RBGs. I decide to try if I can persuade them to handfeed. I throw some bread at them, closer and closer. The immatures are the boldest, quarreling and screaming. Finally they dare to come within half a meter with a quick jump and using their wings to backoff rapidly again. Then I stretch my arm and hold the food in my hand. But they find it too dangerous when I look at them, so I turn my head away. Then, after some trial jumps, the first one grabs the bread from my hand. Although they stay wary, in the end I can look at them while they snatch it from my hand. But only the immatures are bold (or naieve?) enough to do it. In Europe I have never managed to get gulls to do this.
July 14/15. The Darlington Park is an official Provincial Park and Wildlife Area, with several trails and bordered by the lake. It also includes McLaughlin Bay, a lake separated from Lake Ontario by a narrow beach and scrub area. We will stay here for three nights. Walking to the lakeshore, we are surprised by the large numbers of Canada Geese dabbling in the water, which can be approached very close.
They also graze on the large picknick area, and you can really walk between them. Of course there are lots of RBGs, but also Common, and Caspian Terns fly around. A flock of about thirty Mute Swans is also present. Groups of Double-crested Cormorants fly by in line- or V-formations, as well as some small groups of Feral Pigeons. A few Spotted Sandpipers are on the wateredge, and one has (at least) one chick. A Belted Kingfisher uses overhanging trees to plunge into the lake. In the Bay area we see a Mallard, two Great Blue Herons, a young Black-crowned Night-Heron, and many Red-winged Blackbirds. We hear, but do not see, a Loon. Barn Swallows hunt over the water. Between the cattails we hear a bird which we don't recognize. After patiently searching we finally see it, and it looks like a Chipping Sparrow. Later we check the song on the CD, and discover that it is in fact a Swamp Sparrow, which also better fits the habitat.
Along the trails we see Robins, many Song Sparrows, several Waxwings eating berries, or just sitting on a branch being beautiful, many chickadee-dee-dee Chickadees, a few Yellow Warblers, a Mourning Dove, many noisy Crows, a Downy Woodpecker, quite a few Goldfinches, and some Gray Catbirds. Some of them sing their melodious song from a conspicuous spot, which song resembles to us a little bit like a European Blackbird. Also some Common Grackles and Eastern Kingbirds are spotted. In the higher trees there are Blue Jays. A nice new species is a Baltimore Oriole, which sits still long enough for us to enjoy its handsome colours.
We also make a trip to the Darlington Nuclear Power Station. Just after leaving the campground, we spot a Red-headed Woodpecker, which just in front of us flies over the road to land on a dead tree stump, where we can have a good view of it while passing, an unmistakable beautiful bird. The power station has its own wildlife area with the Waterfront Trail. It has a pond, an artificial hill, some brushy areas, and some open grassy spaces. Some martin houses and other nesting boxes are there, plus some raptor poles. But we see no activity at these. Around the power station itself, there are many RBGs and some Feral Pigeons. Over one of the meadows we see a low flying female Northern Harrier preying. We make a walk to the Coot's Pond, where we don't see any coots, but a Pied-billed Grebe is a very welcome sight.
There are also many Mallards, some Common Moorhens, and some Black Terns. For the rest, lots of Red-winged Blackbirds
and Starlings,some Robins, many Barn- and Tree Swallows, some Crows, Goldfinches, Song Sparrows, and Grackles, and a few Eastern Kingbirds, one of which is feeding at least three young.
A Killdeer is also around. A Few Waxwings show us again the smoothness of their feathers.
Leaving the pond we meet a local birding expert, who gives us some insight explanations about the local birdlife. Then he says he hears the high tones of a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and indeed he leads us to see it. Without him we wouldn't have discovered it ! He tells us that the Red-headed Woodpecker that we spotted earlier is a rare sight here, and that he will put our sighting on the internet rare birds sighting list which he maintains.
On the other side of the camping, there is a large office of another industry, General Motors, which has transformed the surrounding area into a wildlife area with many trails and viewing spots. More industries should do this. A view at it promises that it could be very worthwile to go birding there, but unfortunately we have to depart.
July 16/17/18. After the enjoyable Darlington area, we depart for Niagara Falls where we will stay a few days. The camping is a crowded, urban-environment one, with only House Sparrows, Starlings, Grackles, and a few RBGs. Around the falls, birds are of course not the main attraction, but we keep a casual look at them. The RBGs are, as expected, the most numerous ones, but there are also quite a few Cormorants around, who swim and dive much closer to the falls as man dares to go, almost into the curtain ! A few Mallards and Canada Geese are also in the river. In the park area around the falls we see some House Sparrows, Robins, and Crows. Between the RBGs we now also discover a few Herring Gulls, with which we reach our goal of 60 species for this holiday. We would have liked to have a more spectacular one to reach that number, but OK, it counts. We also visit the US side of the Niagara Falls, which is much quieter and park-like than the crowded Canadian side. However, US Immigration charges our family of four USD 24 for the privilege of passing the frontier! We note that there is a RBG colony on the steep cliffs next to the falls, with some chicks present.
Additional to the birds mentioned on the Canadian side, we see a few Starlings, Red-winged Blackbirds, Goldfinches, and Grackles. Although we didn't look seriously at the birds here, bird watching around the falls could be interesting, as we saw some more of them for which we didn't have the time to identify them, among which a heron, and some songbirds.
Downstream from the falls, there is a hiking area on the Canadian side, the Niagara Glen Nature Reserve, where you can descend 60 m down to the river edge via some trails through the forest. We decide to make a short stop here. Just before that, we see that there is a camping nearby : when we had known that, we would have gone here, because it is much nicer situated! Above the reserve we see a Turkey Vulture circling. There is also a large picknick area, where the RBGs relief you from any left-overs, together with some House Sparrows. We use one of the trails to go down to the river, but due to the noise of the rapids, you don't hear many birds. And because you have to watch every step on the treacherous rocky trails, you cannot look around a lot as well. Nevertheless some Blue Jays succeed in being louder than the rapids, and we see also some Robins and Chickadees. That is all.
July 19. After having marveled at the falls, it is time to head north. We overnight at a camping in Bradford, north of Toronto. This is an open camping with some lower trees, where we see Goldfinches, a Chipping Sparrow, and Grackles.
July 20. The next camping is in Astorville near North Bay, on a lake. We don't really look at the birds, but note nevertheless some Goldfinches, and a Mallard with some young.
July 21. The next stage of the trip is leading us to Cochrane, which is as far north as you can go by car. From here you can only take the train to reach Moosonee on the James Bay, a part of the Hudson Bay, as there are no roads going there. On the way to Cochrane, we see now only Crows on the roadsides, and only one (unidentified) overflying raptor. It is surprising how few of these you see while driving in Canada, compared to Europe. And when you finally see one, it is too dangerous to stop on the highway for identifying them. The first night in Cochrane we stay in the Greenland Provincial park, about 35 km northwest of the town. This is a beautiful remote park, where, for the first time, we don't hear any trains, highway traffic, or aircraft. Birds, other animals, and the wind in the leaves is all you hear. Black bears and moose are regularly seen in the park, but unfortunately not by us. We camp on the lakeside at Park Lake.
A Kingfisher is fishing near us, making a lot of noise. Quite a few Common Ravens are around with their cracking voices, and some Goldfinches and Robins are also seen. In the evening and the night we hear the beautiful sounds of the loons again. Weird and wonderful at the same time.
July 22. Next morning we make a long walk. A band of Chickadees is exploring some lower trees and bushes, and while we look at them, we spot another group of birds, picking at the needles of some lower pine trees. They are heavily streaked brown birds with a notched tail, and a rather sharp bill. We have to consult the field guide for this one, and look under the sparrows. We add Lincoln's Sparrow to our list.
At the edge of the forest next to an open stroke of land with electricity masts, we see and hear a couple of American Kestrels, sitting alternatively on the higher branches of the trees, or on the power lines. At Green Lake we sit on the wooden viewing platform for a rest, and spot four Common Loons on the lake below us. But no songbird is appearing here. Further into the woods we glimpse some kind of thrush, which regularly calls as "chuck". It plays hide and seek with us, but we finally manage to focus the binoculars on it, and a noticeable feature is that it regularly cocks its tail. Although the reddish of the tail is not so clearly visible for us, with the help of the field guide we identify it nevertheless as a Hermit Thrush. We hear a Veery, and to our great surprise, we manage to get it into full view, while it continues singing. We also hear several Red-eyed Vireos, but they manage to remain out of sight. We take the trail to Sandbar Lake, which, we find out, is almost overgrown, and we have to climb over several fallen trees or go around them. As we have to watch our steps, we cannot look around a lot, and thus see no birds. Also at the lake, we don't see anything, except for some Chickadees. Close-by we hear a bird sing a very characteristic, easy to remember, song. But as we start looking for it, it stops singing, and we can't find it (later on, checking the CD, we find out that it is a White-throated Sparrow). Disappointed we start our return walk. About halfway we pause for a moment, and discover a woodpecker with no red on the head, and looking a bit brownish. The white wing patch however is the clue to identify it as a juvenile Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. Continuing our walk back, we spot a Red-breasted Nuthatch, and we even get a Red-eyed Vireo in our binoculars. The Kestrels are still at the same spot. Returning at Park Lake we see a Loon with two chicks in the water.
Five species were added to our list here at Greenwater Park, so we leave the grounds quite satisfied for our next camping in Cochrane proper, where we will stay two nights. This camping is close to the small town, and is in Drury Park, which is including Hector Lake. In town we see two Mute Swans at the central lake, which are probably introduced and kept there by the municipality, as they are even proudly mentioned in a tourist brochure. In the night we hear several Loons, but next morning none is to be seen.
July 23. We don't invest much time at the birds here, as our purpose of camping in Drury Park is to take the train to Moosonee from the nearby train station. This train, the Polar Bear Express, departs at 0830 am, to arrive four hours later at its destination. On the way we notice that the trees grow smaller the further north you go, and that many clearly have to wrestle with the climate to survive. On the way to Moosonee, we do not see any bird, even not an overflying Crow or Raven. Although we were not continuously staring out of the window, we get the impression that the density of birds lessens substantially here, or they all hide for the train. Also on the return trip (departing at 1800), we don't see any bird.
In Moosonee and the nearby Indian village of Moose Factory, we have five hours for sightseeing, which we do partly by boat on the Moose River, and partly by old school buses which are used for excursions to visit the Cree Indian community, but which are very cramped for adults. On the Moose River we see about five gulls, which are too distant to identify, and not one shorebird. In Moose Factory, on an island opposite Moosonee, we once hear a small songbird, which song we don't recognize, and also get a glimpse of it, but too short to see any detail. And that is all. But OK, this is not a birding trip.
July 24. Before departing Cochrane, we have a quick look around at the camping, but we see only Crows and Ravens. We again hear a White-throated Sparrow, that stops singing when we start looking for it. But at Hector Lake we see an American Wigeon, which has managed to bring ten chicks to adolescence, without them being caught by predators, but probably only to have them shot later by game(?) hunters or so.
From Cochrane we depart for the Raven Beach Park camping in Larder Lake, almost on the Quebec border. On the way we see two hawks(?) together and one almost collides with our camper. I wish I could instantaneously recognize raptors, or that I have a photographic memory to instantly freeze the image in my mind, but unfortunately I have neither, so, alas, raptors which I see while driving remain unidentified.
Just after having everything set up at Raven Beach, we see a Turkey Vulture using the thermals at this warm early evening. We didn't know they come up so far north, at least it is quite a bit out of the range given in the field guides. At first it is harassed by an (unidentified) falcon, and next the poor bird has to cope with attacks by a crow. But it keeps on soaring.
July 25. Next morning we make a walk around the camping and its surroundings, which is quite interesting birdwise, although on the lake we see only a few RBGs, and a Cormorant, which flies over close-by at low level in full sun. (By the way, lakes in Canada look to me often very empty compared with Europe, where you almost always see some coots, ducks, or moorhens). There are many Crows and some Ravens, and a group of Chickadees and some Goldfinches. A Hummingbird is attracted to some feeders at the camping. This bird must also be around the northern edge of its range. We hear several times White-throated Sparrows, but this bird is really driving us crazy, as again we can't find it. We do see however a Red-eyed Vireo, which is easy to view this time, and while studying it, we note that the dark line on the lower side of the cap is a good marking.
Next to the Vireo we see another bird going through the leaves. It has yellow patches on the side of the tail, on the wings, and on the sides. We quickly find out in the guide that it is a female American Redstart, a new species.
It can be watched at close range also. Continuing our walk, a larger bird crosses the road and almost collides with my head. It lands on the lower trunk of a tree, and starts hacking. A woodpecker, which is clearly larger, and with a longer bill than the identical looking Downy Woodpeckers we had seen earlier on this trip. As we had studied them at the time, we recognize this one immediately as a Hairy Woodpecker ,
without having to consult the field guide. It is joined by a second one, and they spend a lot of time right in front of us hacking and probing in a dead part of a tree. They are paying no attention to us, and they are so close, that we cannot even use the binoculars. We have the time to take some pictures. Quite a varied collection of birds here.
We depart the camping and cross the Quebec border shortly after, and head south. On the way we see more unidentified falcons and other raptors while driving than in the other weeks combined. A bit like in Europe. We make a stop at the Barrage d'Angliers, which is a part of a large hydro-electric system of dams and power stations in the area. The (very) fast flowing water is attractive to a lot of birds, in fact it is a good spot to watch several species. Of course there are some RBGs, but also some Cormorants, a Common Tern, a Spotted Sandpiper, and a Common Loon. Even better, there is a large flock of Common Mergansers, with many juveniles, and it is funny to watch them spurt into the currents, and dive and run around over the water : they are clearly having fun.
Between the weeds on the water edge there are many Grackles, Red-winged Blackbirds, and a Song Sparrow. We see some flycatchers hawking for insects from some more distant trees, and we decide to walk up to it to see which flycatcher it is. Well, they are not flycatchers at all, but Cedar Waxwings! So we see a, for us, new way of taking food by a group of Waxwings.
It is good that we came up here, as we also spot a warbler in some lower brush. At first it hops around a bit between the bushes, but then it lands on a branch and starts preening. It isn't disturbed by us, so we can study it at ease. Although being quite fluffy while preening, we note nevertheless a yellow rump, and yellow side patches. Further it is a bit browny, and heavily streaked. This identifies it as a female Yellow-rumped Warbler, number 69 on our list.
Shall we reach the 70 ? We make some pictures of it, and while doing so, we suddenly spot a Hummingbird close-by sitting on a branch. We are able to quickly make a picture as well,
before it darts off to some flowers in front of us, where we can make another picture in the hover. How cute !
We continue our journey to Mattawa in Ontario, where we will stay for the night. We make one last stop on a remote road, and besides a few Waxwings and Chickadees, we hear our White-throated Sparrow again. Despite a desperate and intensive search, with even my wife joining in, we can't find the bird. They better rename it the Stealth Sparrow !
July 26. The camping in Mattawa is on a riverside, and has two brushy ponds, many high and old trees, and some large grass areas. As everywhere, a few RBGs fly overhead, and some Red-winged Blackbirds are on the water edge. Robins are found on the grass, and feasting in some berry trees. Mourning Doves are quietly sitting in a higher tree, softly voicing their mournful call. The Crows are much noisier in the tops of the trees. People in town must keep Feral Pigeons, as quite a few are seen. The omni-present Goldfinches are here as well, always calling while flying around. Then we spot a woodpecker, and the small bill and the small size makes it a Downy-, rather than a Hairy Woodpecker. On the water edge there are also Grackles, and around the ponds we see some sparrow, which doesn't want to come into view long enough to be identified, but is probably the common Song Sparrow, and some warbler with the same behaviour. Then we see another woodpecker, and we expect it to be our Downy again. But the bill looks longer, and the bird looks bigger, so it should be a Hairy Woodpecker, but both the Downy and the Hairy at the same place ? We consult the field guide again, and learn something new : the Hairy has no black dots on its white tail feathers, while the Downy does. Our woodpecker definitely has no dots, so it is a Hairy one. Surprisingly the Downy appears now also, and we look at its tail feathers ; it indeed has black spots. As both woodpeckers are in view now, we can nicely compare them, and will (hopefully) never forget their differences anymore. Then we see a falcon in the top of the highest tree. Unfortunately it is right against the sunlight, so we see it only as a dark silhouette against the sky. We think it is a Merlin, as an American Kestrel would probably have shown some colour difference in its silhouette. But we are not sure enough to make it a confirmed sighting.
Later on, we depart for L'Ange Gardien in Quebec, which is near Hull on the other side of the Ottawa River. The camping is quite small, with high pine trees, and in the evening we hear more than one White-throated Sparrow. To no avail we search the trees and it always stops singing when we come close. Again we cannot find the bird in order to put it on our list. Birding can be very frustrating ! For the rest there is not much to see at the camping.
July 27. In the morning I make a walk on my own, as my daughter prefers to sleep a bit longer. There is a sandy area with some scattered brush, where a few Mourning Doves are flushed. But there are also some areas with trees, bushes, and a lot of seedy weeds. Many Robins are there, but then I suddenly spot two unmistakable Northern Flickers in a tree. I have actually reached the 70 species ! A third one joins them, and some time is spent looking at these handsome birds. Some Song Sparrows frequent the lower bushes and weeds, and also a Goldfinch is seen there. Crows are flying over, or sit in the higher trees, and a Turkey Vulture is soaring overhead. Some Blue Jays are heard, but later appear into view as well. Looking at the Robins, there are some adults, but also many juveniles in differing states of maturing plumage. I see two that look slightly different, and then I realize they are no Robins. They look thinner, and browner, with brown spots on the breast, and a slightly longer tail. I identify them as Brown Thrashers. They should have yellow eyes, but I didn't notice that, so maybe they are not yet adults. Finally I spot some yellow in the bushes, and expect a Yellow Warbler. After some effort I find it back, and see that it is only yellow on the underside. Is this going to be a new species? I carefully memorize all the details I can see : a yellow throat and belly, a grayish head, and a conspicuous white eye-ring. This is sufficient to find it in the field guide as a Nashville Warbler. Lots of birds on this spot, and three new species. When I tell my daughter, she really regrets having stayed in bed, missing the three new ones for her list.
We leave L'Ange Gardien for our final stage : back to Montreal, where we select a camping in Laval, as that is close to where we have to return the camper. The camping is nicely laid-out, has two martin houses, some people have placed feeders at their spots, there are some grass areas, and there is a, supposedly artificial, pond, but with natural looking weeds and cattails, bordered by trees and bushes. It has a duck island in the middle, which houses some Mallards. But surprisingly, there is also a juvenile Pied-billed Grebe. Around the pond there are Red-winged Blackbirds, Grackles, House Sparrows, Goldfinches, a Downy Woodpecker, and an Eastern Kingbird. In the trees on the camping there are Crows and Blue Jays, and RBGs and Feral Pigeons are flying over. On the lawns there are some Robins, and a mixed gang of Starlings and molting gray and blue Brown-headed Cowbirds, who are cleaning the grass of everything edible. On the ground and on the power lines there are many Mourning Doves, and a few roaming Chickadees are also spotted. We didn't expect it anymore, but this camping gives us our last new species, number 73, the Purple Martin. At least 15 or so are around, attracted by the martin houses. They are quite big, compared with other swallows. Although in an urban environment, this camping is well worth keeping an eye on the birds, and is a worthful conclusion of our vacation. But the White-throated Sparrow has managed to keep off our list !
Note : the sequence is as in the Peterson, and for the numbers see below at The Places
1. Common Loon (Gavia immer) at 13,21,24
2. Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps) at 16,27
3. Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax Auritus) at 5,6,15,17,18,23,24
4. Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) at 2,3,6,13,15
5. Black-crowned Night-Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax) at 6,15
6. American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus) at 14
7. Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) at 15,22
8. Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) at 15,17
9. Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) at 3,6,14,15,16,17,18,27
10. American Black Duck (Anas rubripes) at 6
11. American Wigeon (Anas americana) at 6,22
12. Common Merganser (Mergus merganser) at 24
13. Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura) at 9,19,23,26
14. Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus) at 16
15. Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) at 9
16. American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) at 21
17. Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) at 16
18. Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus) at 11,16
19. Spotted Sandpiper (Actitis macularia) at 6,15,24
20. Herring Gull (Larus argentatus) at 17,18
21. Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis) at 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,11,12,13,15,16,17,18,19,23,24,25,27
22. Common Tern (Sterna hirundo) at 3,5,6,15,24
23. Caspian Tern (Sterna caspia) at 13,14,15
24. Black Tern (Chlidonias niger) at 3,14,16
25. Feral Pigeon (Columba livia) at 2,5,7,11,15,16,25,27
26. Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) at 2,4,8,11,12,13,15,25,26,27
27. Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) at 4,23,24
28. Belted Kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon) at 3,15,21
29. Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) at 26
30. Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) at 15
31. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius) at 21
32. Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus) at 23,25
33. Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens) at 3,15,25,27
34. Eastern Kingbird (Tyrannus tyrannus) at 5,14,15,16,27
35. Great Crested Flycatcher (Myiarchus crinitus) at 12
36. Eastern Wood-Pewee (Contopus virens) at 4
37. Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) at 3,4,14,16
38. Bank Swallow (Riparia riparia) at 8
39. Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica) at 1,3,4,5,14,15,16
40. Cliff Swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) at 3,5
41. Purple Martin (Progne subis) at 27
42. Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata) at 10,15,19,26
43. Common Raven (Corvus corax) at 21,22,23
44. American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchus) at 2,3,4,10,15,16,17,18,22,23,25,26,27
45. Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapilla) at 3,4,9,10,12,15,19,21,23,27
46. White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) at 4
47. Red-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta canadensis) at 10,21
48. Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis) at 4,8,15
49. Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum) at 26
50. American Robin (Turdus migratorius) at 1,2,4,6,8,9,10,11,13,15,16,17,18,19,21,25,26,27
51. Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus) at 21
52. Veery (Catharus fuscescens) at 4,21
53. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea) at 16
54. Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum) at 4,9,15,16,24
55. European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) at 1,2,5,8,11,16,17,18,27
56. Red-eyed Vireo (Vireo olivaceus) at 12,21,23
57. Nashville Warbler (Vernivora ruficapilla) at 26
58. Yellow Warbler (Dendroica petechia) at 1,3,4,14,15
59. Yellow-rumped Warbler (Dendroica coronata) at 24
60. Chestnut-sided Warbler (Dendroica pensylvanica) at 3
61. American Redstart (Setophaga ruticilla) at 23
62. House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) at 1,2,4,5,7,11,17,18,19,27
63. Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) at 2,3,4,5,6,8,11,14,15,16,18,24,25,27
64. Baltimore Oriole (Icterus galbula) at 15
65. Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula) at 4,8,10,11,13,15,16,17,18,20,24,25,27
66. Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) at 4,5,27
67. Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea) at 3
68. American Goldfinch (Carduelis tristis) at 4,6,8,9,10,13,14,15,16,18,20,21,23,25,26,27
69. Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sanwichensis) at 5
70. Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina) at 4,20
71. Lincoln's Sparrow (Melospiza linclnii) at 21
72. Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana) at 15
73. Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia) at 4,5,13,15,16,24,26
1. Montreal-Dorval airport
2. Roadside / while driving, Quebec
3. Parc d'Oka
4. St.Philippe de Laprairie
6. Lachine Rapids
7. Montreal city centre
8. Mont St.Hilaire - camping
9. Mont St.Hilaire - nature reserve
11. Roadside / while driving, Ontario
13. Smiths Falls - Otter Lake
15. Darlington Park
16. Darlington nuclear station
17. Niagara Falls
18. USA - Niagara Falls
19. Niagara Glen Nature Reserve
21. Cochrane - Greenland Provincial Park
22. Cochrane - Drury Park and town
23. Larder Lake - Raven Beach
24. Barrage d'Angliers
26. L'Ange Gardien