White-throated Sparrows in our Toronto backyard

white-throated sparrow, ontario, pic 3

Our backyard was a beehive of activity all spring long with many migrating birds choosing to stop by for refreshment and food.  Several pairs of White-throated Sparrows (Zonotrichia albicollis) seemed to find our property quite attractive for they stayed around for almost three weeks. Read more

Razorbill Auks on Carrick-a-Rede in Northern Ireland

razorbill

At the time Bob and I visited Northern Ireland, we had only a casual interest in birds and animals, so it was just by happenstance that we took several photographs of the peculiar looking birds called Razorbill auks (Alca Torda) that were nesting on Carrick-a-Rede Island.  What struck us about their appearance was the thick black beak that is so deep and blunt. Read more

Our walk on the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland

giant's causeway, northern ireland, pic 6

Bob and I arrived in Northern Ireland a day earlier under rainy skies that persisted into the following morning and dampened our hopes for a clear day to visit the Giant’s Causeway.  In light of the inclement weather, we chose to tour the Bushmill’s Distillery en route as a means of killing a couple of hours, and lo and behold, by the time we drove a little further east to the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the rain had stopped. Read more

Our bike ride on Inishmore Island

rental bikes on inishmore island, ireland, pic 2

Bob and I had spent the early part of one morning touring the ancient fort, Dun Aonghasa, and photographing the wide variety of wildflowers at that location, so by the time we returned to our accommodations at Kilmurvey House, our rental bikes were ready and waiting for us.  A quick stop at the nearby cafe afforded us some sandwiches and apples that were tucked into our backpacks before setting off on our bike ride on Inishmore Island. Read more

A River Otter enjoys a spring day near Haliburton, Ontario

otter on ice, minden, ontario

Bob and I had the opportunity to drive to the town of Haliburton on a recent spring weekend, with a set time required for our arrival, so nothing much was going to get in our way of arriving on schedule.  As we drove along Highway 35, Bob drew my attention to a black blob on the ice of Cedar Lake, and I recognized it immediately as a River Otter (Lontra canadensis). Read more

The Ring-billed Gull Colony at Tommy Thompson Park

ring-billed gull colony at tommy thompson park, toronto, 5

On a recent outing to Tommy Thompson Park, Bob and I were in search of American Woodcocks in the Wet Woods, several having been sighted there a week earlier.  Although we only managed to flush a couple of those elusive birds, we certainly had no trouble photographing some of the thousands of Ring-billed Gulls (Larus delawarensis) that had congregated at the Ring-billed Gull Colony at Tommy Thompson Park. Read more

The shorebirds at Lago de Cuitzeo in Michoacan, Mexico

white-faced ibis, lago de cuitzeo, mexico, 15

When Bob and I set out from Zitacuaro for San Blas on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, our spirits were high.  Being a birding hotspot, our destination had us filled with anticipation.  What we did not expect to find was the lush aquatic environment and the prolific population of shorebirds at Lago de Cuitzeo, which is found along Toll Highway 15D still in the State of Michoacan. Read more

Brown Pelicans at San Blas, Nayarit, in Mexico

brown pelican, san blas, nayarit, mexico, pic 8

Our first morning in San Blas, Mexico, Bob and I awoke to the sounds of Great-tailed Grackles, church bells, and seabirds.  From our third-floor balcony, a slim band of blue water was barely visible beyond the tall, swaying palm trees of the hotel’s inner courtyard, so we knew that an interesting walk lay ahead of us.  After a relaxed breakfast, we navigated the dirt streets to the harbour where huge Brown Pelicans (Pelicanus occidentalis) soared on the ocean breeze. Read more

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