Greenbirding - A Journal

Occasional short observations - mostly (but not always) about wildlife and gardens

Greenbirding - A Journal/

A “Garden in the Forest” – Part 2

By | 2017-06-04T18:34:20+00:00 June 4th, 2017|arboretum, wildlife|

A couple of weeks ago, we posted here about the volunteer creation of the wildlife feeding "Garden in the Forest" at the Arboretum - you can read it here: to find out what it's about. Time for an update. All the trees, bushes and shrubs are now planted and the site has been thoroughly dug over to try to get rid of big, thuggish weeds and ferns. Needless to say, that's a vain hope but [...]

Arboretum birding (with photographs)

By | 2017-08-12T17:45:12+00:00 May 27th, 2017|arboretum, birds|

Towards the end of April, Chris and led a birding field trip in the arboretum for members of Bird Protection Quebec that turned out to be stunningly successful with slightly over 50 species seen ... which for April, when the snows have barely departed, is exceptionally successful. Today we repeated the exercise for members of the Arboretum itself (we do this every year towards the end of May) timed to coincide reasonably well with peak [...]

Making a “Garden in the Forest”

By | 2017-05-25T19:21:10+00:00 May 25th, 2017|arboretum|

I have been involved this spring in a wonderful volunteer project in the Arboretum ... we are creating a new trail (which I won't spoil for you here, there will be an official announcement and unveiling later in the year) and alongside it a small group of us are creating a "Garden in the Forest". It's a lot of fun, really, despite the complaints from my back and the ever hungry mosquitoes. The garden is [...]

Arboretum addendum – with audio

By | 2017-05-18T17:17:24+00:00 May 18th, 2017|arboretum, audio, birds|

While walking the Orange trail yesterday (see the previous post here for details and photographs) I was experimenting with recording bird songs using my iPhone and the Røde audio recording app. In the summer months there are lots of Red-eyed Vireos singing in the forest and I turned the microphone on what I thought was one just off the trail (I never saw it) and got a good, clear recording with frog croak accompaniment from [...]

Today in the Arboretum

By | 2017-05-17T17:50:20+00:00 May 17th, 2017|amphibians, arboretum, flowers|

What a difference a few days make at this time of the year ... here is the entrance to the Orange Trail just west of the Conservation Centre on 3 May and again today (17 May). The pictures below are of the same stretch of the trail at the same time of day. Last week we took a detailed walk around the Orange Trail specifically focussed on the ephemeral flowers that briefly show themselves in the [...]

Ephemerally Botanising … spring in the Arboretum

By | 2017-05-10T18:28:33+00:00 May 10th, 2017|arboretum, flowers|

LOTS of pictures for you today ... For about two weeks at the start of May (hereabouts) the leaves have not fully opened on the trees and the flowers on the forest floor make the most of the light before they are cast in shade for the rest of the summer ... these "spring ephemerals" are showing beautifully this year. The photos that follow were all taken on a walk this morning along the orange [...]

Simultaneous Butterflies

By | 2017-05-01T16:41:35+00:00 April 29th, 2017|butterflies, garden, insects|

These are not birds ... but they do fly. Warm sunshine in the garden today brought forth four species of butterflies at the same time. None of these are at all rare, but they are beautiful and they behaved exceptionally well for the photographer.  I have provided both spread wing and "head and antennae" images for each one.   Eastern Comma (Polygonia comma) Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta) Mourning Cloak (Nymphalis antiopa) Cabbage White (Pieris rapae) [...]

Arboretum April Record

By | 2017-04-22T15:05:48+00:00 April 22nd, 2017|arboretum, birding, birds|

Chris (who has way better birding ears than this old guy ... well, he is younger) and I led a group of 26 birders on Bird Protection Quebec field trip this morning in the Morgan Arboretum and the adjacent fields. To be honest, we started with 26 but ten got eaten by bears as we ended with 16 ... but it was cold, and grey and damp and we walked for four and a half [...]

Facebook and why I hate it (but have to use it)

By | 2017-04-17T13:07:54+00:00 April 17th, 2017|photography|

A couple of times a week I post single photographs to my "alternative" Facebook page under the "Occasional Sparroworks" identification - see The pictures that I post there and which a lot of people tell me they enjoy, are ones that (I think) are a bit better than run of the mill snapshots and so I would like to enable people to see them at as high a quality as possible. I use Facebook for [...]

Outsmarting Bell

By | 2017-05-01T16:45:12+00:00 March 27th, 2017|equipment|

This is a Public Service Announcement … You may already know this, but just in case you have been living under a rock for some years (like us) you may profit from reading on. Like many people hereabouts, we have a media bundle from Bell Fibe that gives us TV, internet and landline telephone. We use the internet all day long and the telephone as little as possible. In fact the telephone is pretty much [...]