Sunday, October 22, 2017

Tricks and treats

Cape May Warbler Setophaga tigrina
Cape May Warbler Setophaga tigrina
Savannah Sparrow Passerculus sandwichensis

  On a Sunday that felt far too hot for late October, the cemeteries held some surprise avian treats on a 4.5 hour stroll today, and a couple of tricky ID challenges to boot. Tricks and treats, see what I did there?
The northern edge of the NDN Cemetery was once again a hotspot, with a quiet area of forest edge choked with Dark-eyed Juncos. I took a seat and picked through the roiling flock for about 20 minutes, and smaller numbers of interesting sparrows started to show themselves. The best was a cracking Savannah Sparrow - a gorgeous, confiding individual.
  I bumped into George Levtchouk as I crossed into the MRC, and we watched a steady stream of Hermit Thrushes moving through Mountain View, and compared notes.
  Best of the day was a Cape May Warbler – October 22 feels quite late for this species. With flashes of a yellowy rump, we first thought it was a Yellow-rumped Warbler, which would have been a more likely suspect this late into fall. It took us a few minutes to game out the ID for the bird, which luckily showed well.
  Later on I topped up my mental loot-bag with a Tennessee Warbler, another species that seems a tad late. At first I thought it was a wren or something, as it was skulking silently in dense scrub. Tricky. But also treaty.

Mount-Royal Cemetery, (Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery), October 22, 2017
Turkey Vulture-3 soaring over N2 
Cooper’s Hawk-1 
Merlin-1 or 2 
Peregrine Falcon-(1 at UdeM)
Ring-billed Gull-(2) 
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker-1 juv. male on Mountain View
Downy Woodpecker-3 (2)
Hairy Woodpecker-2 (2) 
Pileated Woodpecker-1 or 2 heard 
Eastern Phoebe-2 in B3 
Blue-headed Vireo-1
Blue Jay-(1 heard)
American Crow-15+ (7)
Common Raven-1 heard
Black-capped Chickadee-20+ (12) 
Brown Creeper-(1)
White-breasted Nuthatch-5 (2)
Red-breasted Nuthatch-2 in their 'spot' in E5
Winter Wren-3 (1)
Golden-crowned Kinglet-8+ (20+ in the pines near Decelles)
Ruby-crowned Kinglet-20+ (5+) 
Eastern Bluebird-2 (2)
Hermit Thrush-20+, with at least a dozen together on Mountain View, others scattered, (6)
Tennessee Warbler-1 skulking in section I, on the south side, seen briefly but well 
Cape May Warbler-1 approachable individual in a yew tree in F7/L4 area 
Northern Cardinal-4 getting after wild grapes in L2, (2)
Chipping Sparrow-3 (4) 
Savannah Sparrow-(1 confiding bird on the northern edge of NDN) 
Song Sparrow-1 (5)
Fox Sparrow-3 in the woods just north of Mountain View, 1 in section I, (2-3 in the NDN north woods) 
White-crowned Sparrow-(1 1st winter with a large Junco flock)
White-throated Sparrow-25+ (15+ on the north edge of NDN)
Dark-eyed Junco-120+ (80+, with most found on the northern edge of NDN) 
American Goldfinch-3+ (5)
Pine Siskin-9 in a flyby
House Finch-1 probable heard north of Mountain View

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