Absolutely gorgeous weather greeted us on Sunday morning. The wind was almost at a standstill, with a max speed of 8 km/h. We arrived at Millhaven Ferry and set up our scopes in search of snowies. We managed to spot two Snowy Owls and a Coyote; nice start! We managed to spot 4 more snowies on the way over to the island. Birds of prey were showing nicely on the island with 5 snowies, 3 Rough-legs, 5 Red-tails and 3 Northern Shrikes. We checked traditional spots for Short-eared Owls, but did not observe any this time around. Early in the day, we observed a female American Kestrel, making for a 4-falcon weekend trip…amazing!
At around 12:45, we began our hike to Owl Woods. The walk to Owl Woods was fairly difficult; clients agreed to a rating of 4/5 exertion level. The snow depth wasn’t particularly deep, but the snow was loose, making footing quite slippery. However, we certainly had some sightings that made up for the difficulty of the walk 🙂 😉
Without even venturing into the jack pine stand, we managed to find two Northern Saw-whet Owls. For all on the tour, the saw-whets were a real highlight, even a lifer for some. We also enjoyed views of both Pileated and Red-bellied woodpeckers.
We wrapped the Amherst portion up during the late afternoon, catching the 4:00 PM ferry back over to the mainland.
We then drove to Invista Lagoons, where we observed 550 Mallard, 26 Gadwall, 20 American Black Duck, 13 Ring-necked Duck, 10 Mute Swan, 4 American Coot, 1 Belted Kingfisher, and 1 Northern Pintail. A great study to end the day!
A great birding weekend!
Millhaven ferry dock: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42122141
Amherst Island ferry: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42122172
Amherst Island: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42142336
Amherst Island ferry: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42134246
Invista Lagoons: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S42136835