A Solitary Sandpiper at Lower Reesor Pond in Toronto



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A Solitary Sandpiper at Lower Reesor Pond in Toronto

spotted sandpiper at lower reesor pond - toronto 2

Bob and I recently visited Lower Reesor Pond in north Toronto because it is fairly close to our home and the day’s weather was uncertain.  There had been recent reports of a Green Heron sighted there, and we were keen to see for ourselves what waterfowl might be on location.  One of the birds that pleased us that day was a Solitary Sandpiper (Tringa solitaria). Read more

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A Viceroy butterfly At Tommy Thompson Park



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A Viceroy butterfly At Tommy Thompson Park

viceroy butterfly at tommy thompson park - toronto - ontario 2

Over the previous few weeks, Bob and I have made countless trips to Tommy Thompson Park, in Toronto, Ontario, in search of Monarch Butterflies, caterpillars and their elusive cocoons.  On one visit, another Monarch Butterfly landed on a bush right in front of me, or so I thought until I got a closer look at its wings.  The brightly-coloured orange butterfly turned out to be a Viceroy butterfly (Limenitus archippus). Read more

A Flutter of Monarch Butterflies At Toronto Shoreline



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A Flutter of Monarch Butterflies At Toronto Shoreline

monarch butterflies - tree 3 - at colonel sam smith park - etobicoke - ontario 19

Last fall, Bob and I ended up spending most of the day at Colonel Samuel Smith Park at the edge of Lake Ontario in Toronto.  Our mission to locate a flutter of Monarch Butterflies started early in the morning, but it was not until late in the afternoon that we finally knew success.  There was no mistaking the chosen tree for its branches hung with hundreds and hundreds of these beautiful butterflies, come together to rest for the night. Read more

Osprey At Tommy Thompson Park In Toronto



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Osprey At Tommy Thompson Park In Toronto

osprey at tommy thompson park - toronto - ontario 1

Over the summer, Bob and I made numerous trips to Tommy Thompson Park.  It all started when we went to look for Monarch Butterfly larvae.  On one subsequent trip to the Park, we ventured further out on the Spit than usual and were quite pleased to find an Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) perched on a tree stump in the middle of the first large pond. Read more

A Hornets nest in Milliken Park in Toronto



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A Hornets nest in Milliken Park in Toronto

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Last week, Bob and I walked over to Milliken Park to check up on the Trumpeter Swan Cygnets and search for Monarch Butterflies.  As we busied ourselves photographing a beautiful Monarch specimen on a milkweed flower, we became distracted by numerous Cedar Waxwings perching in the top of a dead tree.  We were happy to see that a number of those birds were still at the park.  When I glanced into the crown of a nearby maple tree, I was dumbfounded as to what I was seeing.  It looked like a huge turban made out of cloth, but then I recognized it as a hornet”s nest.  It was huge! Read more

Monarch Butterfly Chrysalis At Tommy Thompson Park



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Monarch Butterfly Chrysalis At Tommy Thompson Park

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This past summer, Bob and I made for Tommy Thompson Park once again.  We were certain, given the large number of Monarch Butterfly larvae that we had seen before, that we would be able to find a chrysalis on one of the many Milkweed plants.  Our memory served us well as to the locations of a good share of the well-advanced larvae, but it took us two days to actually locate a Monarch’s chrysalis amid the fields of stately Milkweed plants.  Our persistence had paid off! Read more

Monarch Butterfly larvae at Tommy Thompson Park



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Monarch Butterfly larvae at Tommy Thompson Park

monarch butterfly larvae at tommy thompson park - toronto

On a nice outing to Tommy Thompson Park in Toronto, Ontario, we finally succeeded in locating some of this year’s crop of Monarch Butterfly larvae …ten in fact.  We were ecstatic. Read more

Monarch Butterflies Mating At Lower Reesor Pond In Toronto



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Monarch Butterflies Mating At Lower Reesor Pond In Toronto

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What a sad summer it was here in Toronto, Ontario in 2014, because Monarch Butterflies (Danaus plexippus) were conspicuous by their absence.  Bob and I had been monitoring sightings posted by nature lovers on Facebook, and websites such as The Insects and Arachnids of Ontario, The Weather Network, and Butterflies and Moths of North America.  We were not the only people discouraged by the poor showing of these beautiful insects so far this year. Read more

Sunchokes growing wild at Lower Reesor Pond in Toronto



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Sunchokes growing wild at Lower Reesor Pond in Toronto

sunchokes growing at lower reesor pond - toronto 2

How beautiful is a sprawling drift of Sunchokes fading into the distance!  That is just what we found when Bob and I visited Lower Reesor Pond in northeast Toronto.  This native species of sunflower goes by many different names including Sunchokes, Sunroot or Earth Apple. Read more

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