Up early this morning and took myself off to the bPQ field trip that was birding “The Pits” at St-Lazare … a place made world famous for its huge variety of species by my friend Mark, who has been there seemingly every day for the past umpteen years. I am not a field trip birder, usually far too many people and while it’s nice to catch up on the news of the day it does tend to push the birds to the other side of the bush. Anyway, I hadn’t been there this year and it does, arguably, just about come under the definition of my West-Island-Plus birding area if you cross your fingers. Twenty minutes drive anyway, not a huge expenditure of greenhouse gases.

A couple of days ago the wind was from the north and migrating birds were moving in numbers – the aforesaid Mark ticked off 57 in the area we visited this morning and got some very nice species on his list so hopes were high … unfortunately today’s wind had shifted to the south-west and everybody was laid low. There were birds, but it was a rather slow morning and only half the above number of species which came to the following … the ones in bold are additions to this year’s patch list.

Mallard 20, Green-winged Teal 12, Great Blue Heron 2, Great Egret 2, Green Heron 1, Turkey Vulture 1, Spotted Sandpiper 1, Greater Yellowlegs 2, Lesser Yellowlegs 3, Ring-billed Gull 4, Red-eyed Vireo 3, American Crow 3, Black-capped Chickadee 5, American Robin 8, European Starling 50, Ovenbird 2, Black-and-white Warbler 1, Tennessee Warbler 1, Bay-breasted Warbler 2, Black-throated Blue Warbler 1, Pine Warbler 1, Yellow-rumped Warbler 3, Scarlet Tanager 1, Rose-breasted Grosbeak 1, Common Grackle 40

There is a rather grainy picture of the Scarlet Tanager in the gallery below … at this time of the year they turn green so don’t start asking what I am talking about, it’s a Tanager.

Note: Warblers, which are so bright and visually distinctive in the spring all turn dull shades of green and mirky yellow in the fall and become effing hard to identify – commonly referred to as confusing fall warblers, because they are. I am reasonably confident of the species names attached to the pictures in the gallery and will defend why I allocated them but I am prepared to be proven wrong … it’s confusing in the fall, as I just said.

Back home this afternoon we had a few more migrating this and that’s through the garden so I have attached a couple of photos taken from the deck.

** As there are a lot of pictures, I have put them in a gallery. As usual just click on the thumbnails to open the gallery and see them all at full size. If you have come to this posting because you subscribe to my blog (thank you) you will need to click on the heading in the email you receive to actually go to the blog and see the photographs … for some reason full photos get included in the emails but galleries do not.

First the gallery of images from the pits …


And a few from the garden …