Will we, Won’t we?

The birding has picked up some, with hoped for birds appearing in southern Nova Scotia. The highlight for me was my Cape Sable Island Canada Warbler then, like buses, along came another just an hour later on The Cape! That was more or less the highlight of that particular visit although this plover stood out from the rest by virtue of being quite a bit darker around the head markings and with a broad breast band. The bill looked a bit hefty too but, the plumage anomalies aside, it was ‘just’ a Semipalmated Plover.


The darker bird above, some archive shots below including a dark looking individual.

The shorebird numbers are steadily dropping, we peaked into early August, earlier for the Short-billed Dowitchers. This of course makes it easy to sift through, hoping for a rarity such as a Common Ringed Plover, Little Stint or Greater Sandplover! You have to be optimistic. We did come up with a good bunch of Pectoral Sandpipers and the usual suspects were happy to pose.


A Pectoral Sandpiper, a White-rumped, a Semipalmated and a Least all walk onto a sandbar.

Nice to see wheeling flocks of shorebirds that are not being chased by a Merlin.


You know the summer is done when the duck diversity starts to expand. These female/immature Hooded Mergansers were tamer than I’m used to.


Under-appreciated on this continent, I drove miles to see my first when one showed up in the UK, I think that there has only been one other since.


Sometimes it pays to sit still, this Northern Harrier came very close at Daniel’s Head.


Finally a good mix of warblers.


Prairie, Wilson’s and a Common Yellowthroat.

On Sept-11th, 2017 at Clam Point I had a Warbling Vireo in the yard. I just could not get a clear shot of it and then, just as it popped out and I clicked, it moved rapidly. The light was awful and other excuses, still a nice year and yard tick.

 The will we, won’t we bit refers to the hurricane situation. Jose is currently pratting around in the Caribbean and the track has kept everyone in the dark, normally they develop then pick up pace and do their stuff. It may be that Jose will finally set off north and may hit Nova Scotia, or just brush us a bit. Had it been a quick hurricane than raced up the eastern seaboard we might have expected some rare birds on it, as it is we might just get wet, we” have to wait and see. 

Stop press sort of, Clyde found three Blue-grey Gnatcatchers on Fish Plant Lane, CSI Sept-12th, 2017. Only he, Johnny and Sandra Nickerson saw them, Mike and I were on The Cape at them time although we did abandon our walk and give it a go but there were so  many hawks aloft that all small birds were sensibly keeping low. We did get a Pine Warbler on The Cape, a nice CSI year tick for me.


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