We saw this along the way on the side of the road. I don't know why I feel compelled to take pictures of (and then post) dead birds. Call me crazy but I think it's important to take a minute for them, and also to reflect on our impact on the environment. This sighting is particularly unsettling...I love all birds, but to see a pileated, an absolutely majestic bird, is extremely sad. Of course lots of birds we find have died of natural causes, but this one, along the roadside, was more than likely on a collision course with a vehicle :(
We figured it would be a good idea to sign up for one of the guided hikes since it's a new area and this would be a good starting point for us. That meant getting up super bright and early since we were staying with one of my uni room mates in Windsor, over an hour from the park.
|Sightings board in the visitor centre|
Alvan was our tour leader, whose blog I just found. He was pretty young guy, so it was pretty inspiring to see another younger person so knowledgeable and passionate about birdies. In fact, I saw lots of other young people birding, which was nice, since I don't see much of that around here. (*sigh of relief; I'm not alone*) The highlight of the walk for me was seeing an eastern screech owl that I would not have found otherwise. Our leader set the scope on it (a nice Swarovski...if I didn't have scope envy before, I sure do now!). I recalled the birdchick's digiscoping skills so I tried getting a shot through the eyepiece with my iphone. Not the best shot, but at least documentary, and it has kind of a neat effect.
#221: Eastern Screech Owl (Rufous morph); Point Pelee National Park; May 20, 2012
After our walk we headed down to check out the tip. It's definitely a cool spot. A scissor-tailed flycatcher had been reported earlier in the morning but we didn't see it. There was an interesting combination of die-hard birders and very-obviously-not-birders. I even heard some people say, "Yeah, it must be like, Birdwatcher's Day or something," LOL.
Around noon we decided to take a break and headed to Kingsville for lunch at Jack's (yum!!) and a little winery visit. A little refreshed (but let's be honest...still exhausted!), we headed back for the afternoon. It was a lot quieter than I had expected it to be...I was expecting a lot more warblers. The majority of warblers were yellow warblers, but some others were spotted as well. There were more Baltimore orioles than I've ever seen before, along with orchard orioles, which was nice, since we don't have those in Ottawa.
|Pretty good looks at an Eastern Towhee|
#222: Prothonotary Warbler; Point Pelee National Park; May 20, 2012
|showing off those undertail coverts!|
|Matt taking a picture of me taking a picture of the red admiral|
Fairly exhausted, we decided to call it a day. We pondered the thought of coming back for park opening the next morning on the way home, as we felt we had missed a few key birds, and hoped it might be a more productive day. However, I doubted it would be much different without any change in the weather. As we headed out of the park, I wanted to stop and get a shot of how lush a lot of the park is, with vines growing up all the trees in a way that it just doesn't do around here in Ottawa.
Matt wandered off down a little path and called me over to check out the beach. I don't know how but I did notice some birds....and...DANG....they were cuckoos!! I felt an immense sense of joy and the thought of coming back first thing in the morning the next day was long gone!
#223: Black-billed cuckoo; Point Pelee National Park; May 20, 2012
|nice beach at Pelee--calm and quiet at the end of the day|