It is a quiet time of year, no doubt about it. So this will be a shorter post than some.
I'm spending a fair bit of time entering bird sighting data on ebird. I know I was a bit slow to embrace ebird, but have decided to tackle it to some extent. So far I've been entering some of the highlights beginning in the early to mid 1970s, and have even gone back into the 1960s for a couple of things. At the moment, I'm about ready to get on with 1983, and mostly from the Rondeau Provincial Park and St. Clair NWA areas. I haven't entered all the bird data up to that date by any means, but it is a start. And in delving into those past records, field notes and such, I am enjoying re-living some of those memories.
The Snowy Owls in Dover are still around. I've seen at least three in different spots over the last few days, one of which gave terrific views. Bear Line continues to be the best spot for viewing a couple of them.
Today I headed out to Shrewsbury and Erieau. I knew everything would be iced up, and it was. There were ice fishermen on Rondeau Bay, and word has it that there are some pretty good catches of Yellow Perch right now, but the fishermen have to go out a long way. I was going to take some shots of the ice huts, but they were so far out I didn't bother....too much sunlight radiation to make it worthwhile anyway. It seemed that most of the fishermen were much closer to the Rondeau marsh than the Shrewsbury dock.
Along the road between Shrewsbury and Erieau, the snow drifts are quite high. Horned Larks were scattered in various places along the roads. Normally you see them feeding in the gravel, but sometimes they were right up on the snow piles. I was pleased to get the eye-level photos that follow without having to get down on the ground with them. For the third photo, I was actually looking up slightly, and the bird's feet were obscured by a closer and out-of-focus clump of snow.
I did see a couple of Bald Eagles in my travels and both were sub-adults. One was out on the ice of Rondeau Bay, and the other flew right over my car while I was heading out of Erieau.
A small group of Snow Buntings was flying around the pier area of Erieau. Ditto for American Crows. I don't know what the crows were expecting to find.....there didn't seem to be anything whatsoever for them.
A nice adult Red-tailed Hawk was busily feeding on something, but it was too far gone to tell. A few crows were hanging around, hoping for some scraps, I presume.
And an update on a post I made a few days ago, bringing attention to the risks of having personal photos posted on the web being potentially pirated. In discussing things back and forth with the news media that used one of my photos without permission, we came to a resolution, and the cheque arrived in the mail today!