Friday, May 6, 2016

A Cool Start to Migration in Toronto

Having returned to Toronto after a few days of birding in Florida I was hoping for warm weather and a lot of early migrant warblers.  I really got not much of each.  And I really don't have much time to bird in Ontario during migration this year, so my warbler count may suffer this season.  Still, between Col Sam Smith Park, Tommy Thompson Wet Woods,(don't forget your rubber boots), and Ashbridges Bay Park, this week at home has been relatively productive, even though it still is the early days of spring migration.

One of the nice things about this time of year is you can almost always be a assured of adding a new species to the year list every day, and since re-returning to Toronto I have added 14 species, though not too many warblers.  Fox Sparrow and Swamp Sparrow, were nice additions at Col Sam.  Winter Wren was a nice find while looking for and missing a Golden-winged Warbler at Ashbirdges Bay Marina Park. Otherwise warbler listing, the great sport amongst birders in the spring was rather light.  

And as much as I'd love to condo time warbler season in Ontario, I am posting this blog from my seat in the airplane that will take me to San Francisco.  Tomorrow will be a day of west coast birding with Edgar and Noreem, who were my first guides ever in January of 2012 when I had began a Big Year with no actual idea of how to do a Big Year.  I travelled to San Francisco, a trip I had scheduled months before I even knew about Big Years, with just 39 species 6 days into the year.  After spending a day with my new guides, it was explained to me that I couldn't really call it a Big Year without going to Arizona, the Rio Grand Valley of Texas or Alaska.  Edgar got me thinking and within days I began my research and booked trips to Arizona, Texas and Alaska.  

So, over the next week I have 2 half days of birding in San Francisco, followed by a full day of Texas birding.  I leave Toronto with 221 species and my Big Year is finally getting underway!   

See you on the other side.

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