Anyone living in the southern part of Ontario right now knows that we are in the midst of a deep freeze. In fact, today was the coldest day since January 15, 2012, and it’s supposed to be even colder tomorrow. This made me extra jealous as I was dropping my brother off at the airport for his flight to Panama…
Since I was wide awake at 4 am, and in the middle of Toronto, I decided to head up to Algonquin Park (yes, where it was even colder, -20 before windchill!!!). I am glad I did. The morning was calm, and everything was coated in a thick blanket of fresh snow. It was truly beautiful. Sadly my camera that I brought was completely out of batteries, so I was unable to document anything today! Grrrrr.
It was pretty quiet in terms of the numbers of birds around. Most of the critters I saw were around the feeders at the Visitor Centre, and along the Spruce Boardwalk Trail. I added COMMON RAVEN and BOREAL CHICKADEE to my Ontario 2013 list. The only new birds for the year were 3 PINE GROSBEAKS feeding at the Visitor Centre (including 1 stunning male…grrrrr camera). This alone made the drive worthwhile!
I left the park and drove down to Presque’ile Provincial Park and quickly found the BARROW’S GOLDENEYE that has been frequenting the area off of the lighthouse. This was a new species for me in Ontario! I was so happy to see it, as I have missed several in the past. It provided a great comparison to the many Common Goldeneye that were keeping it company. There were also some nice rafts of Long-tailed Ducks right beside the shoreline…grrrrr camera.
So it was a great day with 2 Big Year species, and 2 more Ontario 2013 species. And I learned a valuable lesson in never leaving home without a fully charged camera!