Monday, October 31, 2011


This past Saturday, during one of my daughter's swim practices, my husband and I made a quick visit to the piers at Erieau, then we walked along the marsh trail just outside Erieau.  We saw some birds that I have seen before, like Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Herring Gulls, an Osprey with a fish in its talons (couldn't get a decent picture...the sun was in the wrong place), Yellow-rumped Warbler, Ring-billed Gulls, Double-crested Cormorants.  As usual, there were several birds that completly eluded me...not only do I not recoginize many songs and calls, but fall leaves crunch underfoot, drowning out the rustling about of little birds.  That said, I did see two life birds.... :)

Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher!! Life Bird!  Got to watch it eating a bug of some kind :)

Yellow-rumped Warbler...not a life bird, but first time I've seen one in this plumage.

I think this is a Bonaparte's Gull (life bird!!)...there were at least two flying around.  At first I thought it was a Black-headed Gull, but the bill on this bird is all black.  It has orange/red feet and one of them has a black tail band...reading about it, it seems that the one with the tail band is a juvenile.  As usual, if I have misidentified this bird, please let me know.

McGeachy Pond

Well, it is back-to-school time....two months ago.  That means far less freetime for me.  My schedule now totally revolves around my daughter's schooling and swim schedule (thankfully my son drives and is essentially done school!).  I haven't really had the opportunity to go out birding, but I try to take advantage of the odd hour or so that I occasionally get.  This post is about such an opportunity!  My daughter swims in Blenheim, so I decided to go check out Erieau.  On my way there, I was totally side tracked by a marshy-pond, so I stopped to have a look.  It is really nice....there is a path between the marsh/pond and Lake Erie.  This day, there were several monarchs enjoying some asters, there were Caspian Terns flying above the lake, Mute Swans were swimming in the pond.  There were numerous other birds that eluded me....I could hear a lot of bird songs/calls that I didn't recognize....I am waiting to for the library copy of Birding by Ear.  I saw one life bird, a Belted Kingfisher, using its wings to remain in one spot while looking for fish.  By the time I put down my binoculars and grabbed the camera, he (or she) dove out of sight.  The following pictures aren't birds, but will give you an idea of what it is like at McGeachy pond, if you haven't been.

One of several rabbits I saw along the path.

Four Monarchs on this plant!  There were more, but this was the most I could capture in a photograph...they kept spooking and returning.


Boardwalk into the pond from the path between the pond and Lake Erie.

The path and lake as seen from the tower by the "parking lot".

This was down the road from the pond...tobacco recently picked.

A tobacco drying barn on the other side of the street.