Thank goodness we ONCE AGAIN completely ignored the weather report for Leamington. It did not rain all day today any more than it rained all weekend the last time that was predicted for the park and town of Leamington. Fortunately, Sylvain and I have taken up the hobby of manifesting the weather we want, then going on out to enjoy a beautiful day.
Since today was my Saturday to have breakfast with Pa, we arrived at the park at around lunchtime. It was cool and overcast with no wind, not even at the very tip!
We had barely stepped off the tram before we were looking at Prothonotary, Blackburnian male and female, Black-throated Blue male and female all in the same little area. Photographers were having a field day with the Prothonotary, which was not in its usual habitat but was catching small insects along large trunks of trees. What a gorgeous bird.
On the west side near the tram loop, a group of birders was cooperating in a stake-out of the Henslow’s Sparrow that had been seen in the vicinity an hour earlier. They spread out along the path so that if any one of them saw it, he/she could call everyone else over for a look. We joined them for about 15 minutes, then gave up.
I’ve noticed that since we completed the 100-species challenge, birding has become more fun again. I have a competitive streak as well as OCD, and when I get caught up in those aspects of my personality, mindfulness goes out the window. While we were working on the 100, I noticed that I was often slightly uptight, less fun to be with, and often found myself ignoring an absolutely beautiful feathered creature that was right in front of me simply because we had already ticked it on our list and needed to move on to try to get the next species. Pathetic, I know.
Today we moved more slowly, smiled more, laughed more and got more enjoyment out of every little thing around us…from a violet blooming amid the bright, spring-green moss to the charming “drink-your-teeeea” call of an Eastern Towhee.
Still, the OCD side of me wants to list what we saw. Instead of doing our usual trails (tip, Woodland, Schuster-Tilden), we decided to start at White Pine and make our way north along the bike path to DeLaurier. This ended up being a very good decision; we ran into pockets of warblers, etc. Our list for the day is:
- White-crowned Sparrow
- Mourning Dove
- Chipping Sparrow
- Blackburnian Warbler (male and female)
- Prothonotary Warbler
- Black-throated Blue Warbler (male and female)
- Yellow-rumped Warbler
- Magnolia Warbler
- Red-eyed Vireo
- Eastern Pewee
- American Goldfinch
- Red-breasted Nuthatch
- Cedar Waxwing (heard first, then seen)
- Red-breasted Merganser
- Black-crowned Night Heron (roosting at the tip – we could see its red iris)
- Black-throated Green Warbler (seen and heard)
- Red-headed Woodpecker
- Palm Warbler
- Eastern Kingbird
- Red-bellied Woodpecker
- Black and White Warbler
- Canada Warbler
- Grey Catbird
- Baltimore Oriole (males and females abundant)
- Orchard Oriole (males and females)
- Ring-billed Gull
- Common Grackle
- Black-capped Chickadee
- Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
- Blue Jay
- Indigo Bunting (2)
- Eastern Towhee – singing “drink-your-tea”
- Great-crested Flycatcher
- Chestnut-sided Warbler
- Common Yellowthroat