> From: "Jean Iron" <[log in to unmask]>
> Date: August 23, 2010 4:02:46 PM EDT
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: [Ontbirds] James Bay Shorebirds, Ontario #6 - Photos
> This is my sixth and final report for the period 14-17 August 2010
> at Longridge Point on southern James Bay. The crew returned home on 18
> August. I was a volunteer surveying the endangered rufa subspecies of
> the Red Knot and other shorebirds under the direction of Mark Peck of
> the Royal Ontario Museum. Other crew members were Don Sutherland, Mike
> McMurtry, Doug McRae, Lisa Pollock, Christian Friis and Ray Ford. Click
> link at bottom for 6 pages of photos and observations from this year's
> SHOREBIRD OBSERVATIONS: For most species only the high count day is
> given in checklist order.
> Black-bellied Plover: 71 on 15 August - all adults molting from
> alternate to
> basic plumage. We did not see juveniles, which normally begin arriving
> in James Bay in late August and early September.
> American Golden-Plover: 2 on 14 August - all adults molting from
> to basic plumage. Juveniles normally start arriving in James Bay in late
> August and early September.
> Semipalmated Plover: 176 on 15 August - 1/2 juveniles.
> Killdeer: 17 on 15 August - 1/2 juveniles
> Spotted Sandpiper: 17 on 15 August - 2 adults in full alternate plumage,
> 15 juveniles.
> Greater Yellowlegs: 214 on 16 August - more than 1/2 juveniles. Adults
> were molting from alternate to basic plumage. Many adults were in wing
> molt suggesting that a good number of adults undergo a complete prebasic
> molt in James Bay before continuing south. Of those adult shorebird
> species that molt during migration, most molt only body feathers and
> delay wing molt until reaching the wintering grounds.
> Lesser Yellowlegs: 454 on 16 August - mostly juveniles.
> Whimbrel: 14 unaged birds on 16 August.
> Hudsonian Godwit: 556 molting adults on 13 August and 448 on 15 August.
> No juveniles as of the 16th. They should arrive soon. Most adults depart
> James Bay by early September whereas the juveniles remain well into
> Marbled Godwit: 5 juveniles on 12 August were the last sightings.
> Ruddy Turnstone: 994 on 16 August. Mostly adults with only a few
> RED KNOT: 705 on 14 August, 1989 on 15th and 994 on 16th. Most were
> adults with about 8-10% juveniles. Many adults were bright red
> suggesting that they were recently arrived males from the breeding
> grounds. On 15th at high tide, knots flew in late evening to the tip of
> Longridge to roost for the night.
> Sanderling: 153 molting adults on 15 August. First juvenile on 16
> Semipalmated Sandpiper: 4300 mostly juveniles on 16 August.
> WESTERN SANDPIPER? Doug McRae photographed a possible adult on 10
> August. See 2 photos on page 2 of website via link below. We sent the
> photos out for opinions. One reviewer said, "White-rumped is a
> reasonable conclusion. I don't see anything obviously wrong. The rufous
> bird in the second photo has the same bulk and same outline as the
> White-rumped to its left." Readers are invited to comment. There is one
> previous report of Western Sandpiper from James Bay.
> Least Sandpiper: 222 on 15 August. Most were juveniles except for a few
> White-rumped Sandpiper: This is most common shorebird at Longridge. 6650
> molting adults on 16 August. Some recent arrivals (males?) were still in
> worn alternate plumage. The west coast of James Bay is a critical
> stopover site for White-rumps to fatten and molt before migrating to the
> wintering grounds in southern South America. The first juveniles begin
> arriving in late August.
> Pectoral Sandpiper: 252 on 15 August. Pectorals are not on the tidal
> mudflats. They prefer short and medium height grassy areas.
> Dunlin: 141 adults on 16 August.
> BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER: 1 adult on 15 August, 2 adults and 4 (first)
> juveniles on 16th.
> Short-billed Dowitcher: 5 juveniles on 15 August
> Wilson's Snipe: 35 on 16 August.
> Wilson's Phalarope: 1 molting juvenile on 15 and 16 August.
> Red-necked Phalarope: 3 juveniles on 16 August.
> OTHER BIRDS: Little Gull, 3 molting adults and 1 molting into second
> basic plumage on 16 August. Black Tern, 1 adult on 16 August. Common and
> Arctic Terns, 18 adults and juveniles on 16 August. After checking many
> small terns, we conclude that Common Terns are more frequent than
> previously believed. Great Horned Owl, 2 duetting on 15 and 16 August.
> Common Nighthawk, 1 on 14 August. Eastern Kingbird, 3 on 16 August and 1
> on 17 August. Tree Swallow, 152 on 15 August and 321 on 16 August. Bank
> Swallow. 31 on 15 August and 62 on 16 August. Cliff Swallow, 18 on 15
> August and 80 on 16 August. Barn Swallow, 1 on 15 and 16 August.
> SWIFT, one was seen on 16 August by Doug McRae and Don Sutherland during
> major swallow migration. It had a distinct whitish throat and
> contrasting pale rump strongly suggesting a Vaux's Swift (no Ontario
> records) from western North America. The observers are confident that it
> was not a Chimney Swift, which breeds farther south in Ontario. They
> will file reports with the Ontario Bird Records Committee.
> HAWK FLIGHTS: Two significant flights were observed along the coast
> during southwest winds on 15 and 16 August. Hawks were moving south
> along Longridge Point. Northern Harrier, 12 adults and juveniles on 15
> August and 11 on 16th. Sharp-shinned Hawk, 2 juveniles on 15 August and
> 1 juvenile on 16th. Northern Goshawk, 1 adult and 3 juveniles on 15
> August. Broad-winged Hawk, 1 adult and 6 juveniles on 15 August; 15 on
> 16th, over half the birds seen well enough to age were juveniles.
> Red-tailed Hawk, 1 adult, 2 juveniles and 1 unaged bird on 16 August.
> Merlin, 13 on 16 August. Peregrine Falcon, 3 juveniles and 1 unaged bird
> on 16 August.
> BUTTERFLIES: One new species since last report is Hoary Comma on 15
> DRAGONFLIES: Two new species since last report are Taiga Bluet and
> White-faced Meadowhawk on 15 August.
> ONTARIO SHOREBIRD CONSERVATION PLAN.
> SNOW AND ICE COVER MAP shows James Bay reaching deep into central
> Canada. www.natice.noaa.gov/pub/ims/ims_gif/DATA/cursnow_usa.gif
> MAP OF SOUTHERN JAMES BAY. Yellow pointer shows location of Longridge
> Point. Ontario borders the west coast of James Bay and Quebec borders
> the east coast. Provincial boundaries extend to the low water mark on
> James Bay. Offshore islands extending to the low water mark are in
> Nunavut Territory. The waters and seabed of James Bay are internal parts
> of Canada under exclusive federal jurisdiction and not part of Ontario,
> Quebec or Nunavut.
> PHOTOS OF SHOREBIRDS AND SURVEYORS.
> Jean Iron and Ron Pittaway
> Toronto, Ontario
> ONTBIRDS is presented by the Ontario Field Ornithologists - the provincial birding organization.
> Send bird reports to ONTBIRDS mailing list [log in to unmask]
> For information about ONTBIRDS visit http://www.ofo.ca/
Coordinator OFNC Falcon Watch
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