The Courtship Ritual of Cedar Waxwings

The Courtship Ritual of Cedar Waxwings

Cedar waxwings courting in trees at Oxtongue Lake in Ontario

My childhood home at Oxtongue Lake holds a very special place in my heart, and we visit there often.  Every season has something special to offer and to excite Bob and me.  In early June, it was the nesting pair of returning Eastern Bluebirds that first captured our attention, but with expansive views from mom’s sunroom windows, we saw at least a dozen other species of birds including four pairs of Cedar Waxwings. Read more

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Eastern Bluebirds at Carden Alvar in Ontario

Eastern Bluebirds at Carden Alvar in Ontario
eastern bluebird, carden alvar, carden township, city of kawartha lakes, ontario

Bob and I were up early on May 3rd in our attempt to get to the Carden Alvar at a decent morning hour.  We’re usually a little slow to get off the sheet, but in this case, we did better than usual and found ourselves on Wylie Road by 8:30 a.m.  I know it’s not sunrise, but we still scored lots of sightings, among them several pairs of Eastern Bluebirds. Read more

A Wilson’s Snipe at Ontario’s Carden Alvar

A Wilson’s Snipe at Ontario’s Carden Alvar
wilson's snipe, carden alvar, city of kawartha lakes, ontario, pic11

Bob and I came home from Ontario’s Carden Alvar very satisfied with our experience in that unique habitat.  The combination of grasslands, forests, shrublands and wetlands creates a landscape that is not only favoured by a wide variety of wildlife but also is attractive to those people who go in search of the birds and animals that live there.  One such bird that we managed to see was a Wilson’s Snipe. Read more

White Ibis at the shrimp ponds in San Blas



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White Ibis at the shrimp ponds in San Blas

white ibis at shrimp ponds, san blas, mexico, pic 2

What great fun to set off exploring the vicinity around San Blas, Mexico, in search of wildlife.  The morning that Bob and I scoped out the shrimp ponds on the outskirts of this small fishing community, quite a variety of birds met our searching eyes, most of which we had never seen before.  Among those plying the water for something to eat was this impressive White Ibis. Read more

A Brown Thrasher at Carden Alvar



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A Brown Thrasher at Carden Alvar

brown thrasher, carden alvar, city of kawartha lakes, ontario, pic 5

Our first time visiting the Carden Alvar had Bob and me astonished by the myriad sounds of nature that combined into a marvelous symphony:  choruses of frogs, whirring of Wilson’s Snipes, echoing conk-la-rees from the Red-winged Blackbirds, and Savannah Sparrows raising their voice in song.  On several occasions, all were overshadowed by another lively bit of birdsong that had us mystified…until we finally spotted this Brown Thrasher. Read more

A Black-throated Blue Warbler in our Garden

A Black-throated Blue Warbler in our Garden

black-throated blue warbler, male, toronto, pic 1

One day in early May, as I returned home from doing some errands, I found Bob tied up on the telephone.  He no sooner hung up the receiver but what he declared, “there’s a new bird in our back apple tree!”  It turned out to be a male Black-throated Blue Warbler. Read more

An American Woodcock at the Carden Alvar

An American Woodcock at the Carden Alvar

american woodcock, carden alvar, city of kawartha lakes, ontario, pic1

Our anticipation ran high the night before our first visit to the Carden Alvar that is located northeast of Toronto, Ontario.  We had our alarm set for 5:45 a.m. but I woke up at 5 a.m. and couldn’t get back to sleep.  We were on site by 8:30 a.m. and spent hours touring the area.  It was around mid-afternoon that we came across an American Woodcock, and the sighting pretty much made our day! Read more

A Northern Potoo in the mangrove swamp at San Blas

Northern Potoo in the mangrove swamp at San Blas, Mexico

Northern Potoo in the mangrove swamp at san blas, mexico, pic 5

On our boat tour through the mangrove swamp near San Blas, in Mexico, we saw no less than three Northern Potoos, one of the most highly-sought-after species for birdwatchers.  Bob and I had booked a week’s stay in the tiny fishing village on the Pacific Coast and planned to use our time wisely.  Known as a birding hotspot, the town attracts scores of avian enthusiasts, so we had to secure our guides and tours promptly upon arrival to ensure availability. Read more

Evening Grosbeaks in Algonquin Park

Evening Grosbeaks in Algonquin Park

evening grosbeaks on the spruce bog boardwalk trail in algonquin park, ontario

One of the highlights of our January visit to Algonquin Park was seeing a small flock of Evening Grosbeaks.  What a marvelous way to spend my birthday, trekking about the trails in the Provincial Park.  Our winter weather had been so fickle…fluctuating between spring-like temperatures and those more typical of the Canadian Arctic…that we had no idea what was in store for us when we booked our stay in Whitney. Read more

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