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DVOC Field Trip Report
by Adrian Binns

February 17-19, 2007
Ontario and Quebec

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We managed to see 3 owl species on Amherst before the snow set in, with extraordinary looks at Long-ear’s and a Saw-whet along with a calling Great Horned at mid day! Large mixed rafts of waterfowl included both scaups, Common Goldeneye, Bufflehead, Long-tailed Duck, Redhead and Common Merganser along with a few Tundra Swans were seen on what small bodies of open water remained on Lake Ontario. Other highlights on the island included a flock of Snow Buntings and a group of 5 Rough-legged Hawks, including both morphs, interacting with each other in flight; a pair of Bald Eagles and 2 male Northern Harriers flying together.

The owl show continued on the middle day with a perched Snowy and a very active Northern Hawk Owl that we saw catch and devour a vole. From here it was onto Algonquin Provincial Park where Pine Siskins, Red and White-winged Crossbills were a common sight in particular along the main road. The visitor center feeders held a large group of Evening Grosbeaks and we did manage to find a Black-backed Woodpecker along with confiding Gray Jays. It would not really be a birding trip without a stop to a rubbish dump, and indeed we did manage to pick through the trash (birds) and find a Glaucous and an Iceland Gull.

SPECIES SEEN
Tundra Swan
As many as 18 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Mute Swan
3 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Canada Goose
A few between the border and Kingston

Gadwall
18 at Dupont Hot Ponds; a couple on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

American Black Duck
6 at Dupont Hot Ponds

Mallard
400+ at Dupont Hot Ponds

Redhead
1 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Greater Scaup
5 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Lesser Scaup
3 at Dupont Hot Ponds

Long-tailed Duck
1 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Bufflehead
About 8 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Common Goldeneye
70+ on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

Hooded Merganser
1 male at the Dupont Hot Ponds

Common Merganser
3 at the Dupont Hot Ponds; 6 on Lake Ontario on the southern side of Amherst Island

American Coot
4 at Dupont Hot Ponds

Bald Eagle
2 on Amherst Island with one having just killed a duck; 1 north of Ottawa

Northern Harrier
6 on Amherst Island including 2 males in flight together

Red-tailed Hawk
About 9 between the Kingston area and Amherst; On the return journey home good numbers perched along the roadside between Kingston and well into New York State

Rough-legged Hawk
What a show on Amherst! At least 9 birds in all with all morphs seen very well including at one time 5 in the air.

American Kestrel
1 eating a vole at Dupont Hot Ponds; 2 on Amherst Island

Ring-necked Pheasant
1 female at the southern end of the road leading to Owl Woods on Amherst

Ruffed Grouse
1 posing nicely in a tree on 401 just east of Kingston; 2 west of Brennan Hill in Quebec feeding on the dirt road

Wild Turkey
A flock of 17 just east of Portage du Fort in Quebec; About 8 roosting along 81 in New York State

Ring-billed Gull
1 around 10,000 islands near the border; 20 in flight near Ottawa

Herring Gull
20 near Ottawa in flight; 40+ at the Napanee landfill

Iceland Gull
1 1st cycle bird at Napanee landfill, seen well in flight and sitting

Glaucous Gull
1 adult in flight at Napanee landfill

Rock Pigeon
Seen daily in small numbers

Mourning Dove
60+ on Amherst, most being at a feeder; a few on both other days

Great Horned Owl
1 calling in the middle of the day on the north eastern side of Amherst Island

Snowy Owl
1 male perched along a fence line near French Hill Road east of Ottawa

Northern Hawk Owl
Stunning views of a very active bird west of Brennan Hill in Ottawa, that included seeing it in flight a catching a vole.

Long-eared Owl
Great close up looks at 8 in Owl Woods on Amherst Island

Northern Saw-whet Owl
1 on Amherst Island

Downy Woodpecker
2 in Owl Woods on Amherst Island; 1 at the feeders at Algonquin

Hairy Woodpecker
1 in Owl Woods on Amherst Island; 1 at the visitor’s center at Algonquin
Black-backed Woodpecker
1 female at km 8 along Rte 60 in Algonquin

Gray Jay
3 at Opeongo Road in Algonquin

Blue Jay
Seen daily in small numbers at Amherst and Algonquin

American Crow
Up to 25 seen daily, mainly in the southern part of the provinces.

Common Raven
Up to 20 seen daily in Algonquin; 10+ seen in Quebec

Jackdaw
Just seeing who recognized the 3 huge blackbird sculptures with white eyes in the field on the western side of Rte 81 in upstate New York !!

Black-capped Chickadee
30+ in Owl Woods on Amherst Island; Surprisingly few in Algonquin with only a couple of very small flocks consisting of no more that 4 seen

Red-breasted Nuthatch
At least 6 seen daily in Algonquin in small flocks of 3

White-breasted Nuthatch
1 in Owl Woods on Amherst Island; Heard in Algonquin

European Starling
Seen daily in small numbers

American Tree Sparrow
A couple at the East gate in Algonquin with 5 or 6 at the Visitor Centers feeders

Dark-eyed Junco
3 at the East gate in Algonquin with 1 at the Visitor Centers feeders

Snow Bunting
A flock of 75+ on Amherst Island and one of around 500 south west of Ottawa

Red-winged Blackbird
6 along 401 east of Kingston

Purple Finch
7 in Algonquin – 5 along 60 and 2 females at the visitor center feeders

Red Crossbill
As many as 40+ seen in Algonquin, mainly along 60, and at Opeongo Road and the Spruce Bog Trail car park

White-winged Crossbill
30+ seen in Algonquin, with a few at the visitor centers feeders; many heard

Pine Siskin
The most common of the winter finches with large groups often seen in Algonquin, in particular along 60

American Goldfinch
1 seen on both days at the feeders at Algonquin Visitor’s Center

Evening Grosbeak
A wonderful flock of 70+ at the Algonquin Visitor’s Center all very chatty

House Sparrow
Someone saw 6 in Kingston!

Red Squirrel
3 in Algonquin

Grey Squirrel
Both grey and black seen in Kingston

White-tailed Deer
3 on Amherst Island; 1 near Ottawa and south of Algonquin

Meadow Vole
1 in the talons of the Hawk Owl!