Saturday, 26 March 2011

Spring migration

The spring migration of birds is well undeway, reports to the area this past week include great blue herons, belted kingfisher, American woodcock, e. meadowlark, e. bluebird, Wilson's snipe, cowbirds and songsparrows along with the flocks of robins and redwinged blackbirds.  Waterfowl continue to gather in the open waters, pied-billed grebes and lesser scaup in the Cataraqui River and a few double-crested cormorants in Kingston Harbour, hooded mergansers are in the creeks and ponds north of the 401. Several species of ducks and small flocks of swans are coming in near Prince Edward Pt.  Raptors, such as kestrels, rough-legged hawks, merlin, and n. harrier are showing their presence.  Red-shouldered hawks are cruising the air over forests along Opinicon Rd.

This is a time of transition, pine siskins, dark-eyed juncos, common and hoary redpolls are still lingering and slowly making their way back north.

The ice on the inland lakes is beginning to thin and turn dark, along the shorelines there are slim patches of open water.  Much of the ground is bare, thicker layers of snow that lay in the shaded hillsides are taking longer to melt.   There is a "chance of flurries" forecast for tonight with a sunny stretch for the remainder of the week.  Temperatures will go a few degrees above freezing during the day but are predicted to dip a few degrees below freezing overnight.  Sunshine will pique impatience for warmer days to come.

R. Burke

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