Saturday, 27 December 2014

Coats and Hats Optional

It's not very often that you can leave the winter clothing at home while birding the Niagara River at Christmas, but that is exactly what happened this past week while I was down near Fort Erie with family as the temperature soared to near 10 degrees.  I managed to get a bit of time to go birding along the river, and although I didn't find anything out of the ordinary, I did have some interesting observations including an adult Little Gull at Waverly Beach on Christmas day!

American Black Ducks
I checked all the usual spots including Adam Beck and had numerous Iceland Gulls as well as a bird that I thought looked to be a good candidate for a Thayer's Gull.  Edit**After looking at the photos the bird in this picture may be just a lightly marked Herring Gull, I'm not sure if this was in fact the bird I was looking at or not. Any ideas?

Out on the river I also spotted this Common Loon just hanging out,

Common Loon
Red-breasted Mergansers
On Christmas eve a big wind storm blew into the Niagara region with gusts of near 90km/h.  On Christmas day I checked Waverly Beach and watched the birds struggle with the strong wind.  After watching for a half hour I was rewarded with a Little Gull! 

A Bufflehead struggles against the wind at Waverly Beach

Merry Christmas!

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