Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Birdathon - Part 2 (Assiniboine Park)

This is, Birdathon Part Two! The afternoon and evening birding.

After we got home from Oak Hammock Marsh at around 1:30 we ate lunch and took a bit of a break. We went biking for a bit, saw Swainson's Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, Western Kingbird, and a Merlin. Christian met us on the road. He was coming to look at the Long-eared Owlets.
We went back to the house to check them out.

Long-eared Owls

Long-eared Owls

Long-eared Owlet
After a photographing session, and discovering the (we are quite sure) Cooper's Hawk nest, we headed back to the house. On the way we saw a Yellow-bellied Flycatcher! Another lifer! It's possible I could have seen one before, but not been able to identify it. Thanks to Christian for this one!
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher Lifer! Will took this photo
We had some supper while we started to tally up some birds, and discuss what we would do next. Christian said he would come with us for more birding.
We decided on Assiniboine Park first, and Birds Hill Park later.

On the way we saw a Peregrine Falcon on the Investors Group Building (where they are nesting). Two of them in one day!

We went to a trail where the Great-horned Owl fledglings were hanging about. We found one pretty quickly, they are big! It was just a fantastic experience to see an owl so large so close.

Great-horned Owl fledgling

Great-horned Owl fledgling *wink*

Great-horned Owl - Close up
The other birds we were looking for was the Indigo Buntings that are nesting there. Christian played it's song on a sound player and it sang back. We waited until we spotted it, and it came closer. It flew onto a branch right above us.

And I just realized that I spelled Indigo wrong on the photos! Haha! Whoops.

Indigo Bunting

Indigo Bunting

Indigo Bunting
We found another Great-horned Owl fledgling, there are three in the area.
Great-horned Owl fledgling

Great-horned Owl fledgling

Great-horned Owl fledgling
On the way home Christian called to stop the car. There was something in the field. Black-bellied Plovers. We crossed a muddy ditch to get a better look. There were seven or eight of them if I remember correctly, and an American Golden Plover as well! The Black-bellied was a lifer, but we saw Golden Plovers in Churchill.
Black-bellied Plover
After we got home we went to Birds Hill Park and saw a few birds, not too many though.

So that's my first Birdathon! 95 species, 9 lifers. I think very successful! The lifers were: Gadwall, American Bittern, Peregrine Falcon, Sora, Dunlin, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, Forster's Tern, Indigo Bunting and last but not least, Black-bellied Plover!!

The full species list is as follows:

  1. Canada Goose                                              
  2. Wood Duck
  3.  Gadwall
  4.  Mallard
  5.  Blue-winged Teal
  6.  Northern Shoveler
  7.  Green-winged Teal
  8.  Canvasback
  9.  Redhead
  10.  Ring-necked Duck
  11.  Lesser Scaup
  12.  Common Goldeneye
  13.  Pied-billed Grebe
  14.  Double-crested Cormorant
  15.  American White Pelican
  16.  American Bittern
  17.  Great Blue Heron
  18.  Turkey Vulture
  19.  Northern Harrier
  20.  Cooper's Hawk
  21.  Bald Eagle
  22.  Swainson's Hawk
  23.  Red-tailed Hawk
  24.  Sora
  25.  American Coot
  26.  Black-bellied Plover
  27.  American Golden-Plover
  28.  Killdeer
  29.  Spotted Sandpiper
  30.  Lesser Yellowlegs
  31.  Hudsonian Godwit
  32.  Dunlin
  33.  Baird's Sandpiper
  34.  Wilson's Phalarope
  35.  Franklin's Gull
  36.  Ring-billed Gull
  37.  Herring Gull
  38.  Black Tern
  39.  Forster's Tern
  40.  Rock Pigeon
  41.  Mourning Dove
  42.  Great Horned Owl
  43.  Long-eared Owl
  44.  Ruby-throated Hummingbird
  45.  Downy Woodpecker
  46.  Hairy Woodpecker
  47.  American Kestrel
  48.  Merlin
  49.  Peregrine Falcon
  50.  Yellow-bellied Flycatcher
  51.  Least Flycatcher
  52.  Eastern Phoebe
  53.  Great Crested Flycatcher
  54.  Western Kingbird
  55.  Eastern Kingbird
  56.  Blue-headed Vireo
  57.  Red-eyed Vireo
  58.  Blue Jay
  59.  Black-billed Magpie
  60.  American Crow
  61.  Common Raven
  62.  Purple Martin
  63.  Tree Swallow
  64.  Bank Swallow
  65.  Barn Swallow
  66. Cliff Swallow
  67. Black-capped Chickadee
  68. White-breasted Nuthatch
  69. Eastern Bluebird
  70. Gray-cheeked Thrush
  71. Swainson's Thrush
  72. American Robin
  73. Gray Catbird
  74. European Starling
  75. Northern Waterthrush
  76. Tennessee Warbler
  77. American Redstart
  78. Yellow Warbler
  79. Chipping Sparrow
  80. Clay-colored Sparrow
  81. Savannah Sparrow
  82. Song Sparrow
  83. White-throated Sparrow
  84. Indigo Bunting
  85. Bobolink
  86. Red-winged Blackbird
  87. Western Meadowlark
  88. Yellow-headed Blackbird
  89. Brewer's Blackbird
  90. Common Grackle
  91. Brown-headed Cowbird
  92. Purple Finch
  93. Pine Siskin
  94. American Goldfinch
  95. House Sparrow

Thank you Christian for making it such a success!

There's still time to donate! The Great Canadian Birdathon is a fundraiser for bird conservation and research.
If you would like to donate you can go to my page here.

Thank you to everyone who has donated!


  1. Superb effort to get 95 species! Next year let's try for 100! Great fun was had by all!

    1. Perhaps if I wasn't sick I could have got 100. I did miss the phoebe and White-breasted Nuthatch, those were the biggest misses.
      Still very successful for my first birdathon, I wasn't expecting to get anywhere near there.