Wednesday 11 December 2013

Manitoulin Island

This summer and fall I have had the pleasure of doing some work up on Manitoulin Island.  Here are some photos and video from my time up on the Island.

Panoramic of Providence Bay. October 20, 2013.

At the end of October I saw the abundant sandhill cranes that stop here on their migration south.  They are truly magnificent birds, really tall and very active when they are together.  The call they make is very distinctive:

For some reason the video quality is greatly reduced on youtube.  My camera takes HD video that looks a lot better on my computer.  I need to figure this out...

I also did a trip up on November 19th and 20th.  Since there isn't much to do on the island and I was by myself I decided to go birding.  I looked on ebird to see what hotspots might be good at this time of the year and focused mainly on sites located on the edge of the lake.  We were getting a strong north wind that day and so I thought it might push some stuff into the sheltered bays along the north shore or at the tip of some of the peninsulas.

I stopped near Mudge Bay and spied not a whole lot, although I did see 4 red-necked grebe among an assortment of ducks and gulls.

I then followed the entire shoreline and stopped in Gore Bay at the marina where I saw some ducks including a goldeneye, common merganser, mallard, black duck and great looks at 2 more red-necked grebe!

Red-necked Grebe on Nov.19/13

After Gore Bay I went down to Julia Beach and nearby causeway and saw long-tailed duck, goldeneye, bufflehead, all 3 mergansers and numerous bald eagles.

Long-tailed duck at Julia Beach

The next morning before I left I checked Providence Bay and saw some gulls, bald eagles and a flock of snow buntings down on the beach.  Although I was a little disappointed by the diversity of birds, it was still nice to see the grebes and in good abundance too!

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