April 14th – Passion and Patience

U of Guelph birding aficianados. ELO

This was definitely a day that tested our patience, but the passionate energy of hopeful nature-enthusiasts made up for it! I arrived at dawn to a very birdy scene and had just nearly finished opening nets when a smug cloud darkened the horizon. I checked my weather app and sure enough, 100% chance of thunderstorm for the next hour… so much for the 30% chance of drizzle. So, I ran about and closed up all the nets, acquiring 5 birds in the process, and hurried back to the hut just as the rain broke. About halfway through the storm some friends from Guelph arrived, and we waited out the rain which cleared away into beautiful blue skies. We were able to open again for about 2 hours before having to close early due to the wind and more showers. A slow day for catching perhaps, but it was still birdy and we managed to complete a census as a group between net rounds. We were definitely not lacking in spirit! After doing totals (which did not take long…), Eila surprised us with her amazing poetry recounting the day’s events (I’m told she may quit her engineering quest and soon strike up a career as a poet…)!

“Once upon a dawnlight dreary, while we pondered weak and weary, waiting for the clouds to split, for they had dumped quite a bit. Many a nature-nerd awaited hoping for the birds that were fated , never to fall into a net, too much rain and wind I bet. Finally, blue emerged from above, nets were reopened with much love. A FISP snuck in to much delight, the net stopping its flighty plight. Unfortune hit yet again, for he was but our only friend, except 3 more SOSPs who had before been caught, and thus our hearts were lonely and distraught. A census then distracted us- turtles basking, bluebirds twitting, and BOGUs causing quite a fuss! Vultures came in, the clouds became grim, and quickly the nets were closed yet again. What a tumultuous morn’, with weather forlorn, but what made it great were a group of slay friends.”
– – ELO

Birding the road….ELO

…and the wetlands…..

Notable sightings were a massive flock of the first Bonaparte’s Gulls of the year, which I noticed were flying towards the river just as the thunderstorm broke, and we later saw some more on census, totalling to over 200 for the day. The first Greater Yellowlegs of the year also made an appearance, flying high over the field. Although a very unsettled day, there were still many birds around, however not many migrants, as the migration conditions were pretty poor last night.

Midland Painted Turtles taking some sun.

Banded 3 of 3 species

Field Sparrow.


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