Birds away from our home

Baldwin's Birds


Despite the unsettled weather, along with my wife, I took a short trip away from our garden birds to visit one of Lake Ontario’s shores and those of Wolfe Island. We had a somewhat chilly couple of days driving around sight seeing and also keeping a sharp eye out for any birds that might be around. We were lucky to spot a couple of Turkey Vultures on our way there and also when coming back, but whilst on the island we got to see a couple of Hawks, some Canada Geese and also some interesting ducks. The latter were quite a distance away from the “dead end” of the road that we had just travelled and heading away from the shore, so not too easy to spot and get pictures of. I was able to get good enough pictures to try and identify them, and am concluding that some of them were Goldeneye Ducks, and a couple of them, judging by the crests on their heads, were Common Mergansers. All lovely birds and a privilege to see.

Prior to spotting these water birds, we had stopped along the road a couple of times when we had spotted Hawks. The first one was patrolling across the fields in search of food in the ditches and was soaring very low to the ground, following its contours. It was difficult following its path visually, and even more so to get pictures of it. The ones that I did get revealed that it was very lightly coloured on its back in flight, with blackish tips to its wings, but the red (rufous) tail was not evident. Neither is it very evident on the one that we saw reasonably close by us later, when we stopped again to see it close to a wooded copse. Every time I tried to get a picture, it would move off and so, when I did eventually get one, it was partially concealed by the branches of the tree it was in. The weather wasn’t co-operating either and soon afterwards, we were driving through a snow squall – lovely! Not the best of weather days, but at least we got to see some birds that we don’t normally see, especially in the garden. Stay safe and well.

John Baldwin


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