Wednesday 14 November 2018

Canada 2018 - Ending the day at Hillman Marsh

With Stephen again at the wheel we headed west towards Point Pelee, it was approximately a 3 hour drive, we were looking for flooded fields or anything that might yield something new on the way. We actually didn't see too much so we found our Motel in Leamington (pretty much the closest place to stat for access to Point Pelee) then headed off to Hillman Marsh. We had heard this wasn't as good as it used to be, maybe this was so, but we found it entertaining nonetheless.
The light was beautiful and the shallow muddy was situated on the west, where you could stand on the bank and view with the sun behind, perfect. Amongst a good number of waders 2 stood out and had drawn a crowd, AMERICAN AVOCETS, really smart birds, surrounded with LESSER and GREATER YELLOWLEGS, lots of DUNLIN, LEAST SANDPIPERS, SPOTTED SANDPIPER. Stephen did a great job finding a single SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER in among all the peeps.
American Avocets

Adding to the assembled waders were at least 40 BONAPARTE'S GULLS, 10 RING BILLED, 20 CASPIAN TERNS, a handful of COMMON TERNS and a FORSTER'S! There was plenty more to see as we scoped the rest of the marsh and walked round the main lake ducks included BUFFLEHEADS, NORTHERN SHOVELER, RING NECKED DUCKS, GREEN WINGED TEAL and 3 RUDDY DUCKS, these ones safe from any cull. HORNED GREBES were also on the water.
Mixture of Gulls and Terns

By standing in the correct spot before we walked the lake we managed to find a GREAT HORNED OWL perched some distance away a nice distraction from the waterbirds. A SANDHILL CRANE made us look to the skies, where a CHIMNEY SWIFT whizzed in and out view at speed. On the walk we found a couple of WOOD DUCK and a couple of DOWNY WOODPECKERS gave good views.
Sandhill Crane

That was a great introduction to Hillman Marsh, and I haven't mentioned the hundreds of TREE SWALLOWS in attendance...

Next stop an early start at Point Pelee.


Helma said...

I have never seen such a sandpiper.
This is really a beautiful bird.
Also nice that you could photograph a crane in the flight.

Greetings, Helma

Stephen Mills said...

Hi Alan,looks like you and Stephen had a terrific time with loads of great birds and mammals.Very jealous plus some lovely photos.
Regards Stephen.

Ana Mínguez Corella said...

Hila Alan.. Nice shots. Congrats and regards

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