BELINDA GROVER PHOTOGRAPHY

STOPS ALONG THE WAY


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CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER

This was the first and only time I’ve seen a Chestnut-sided Warbler.  Unlike many warblers at this reserve, it wasn’t hiding up in the pine trees, so I could get a clear shot. I wish it had turned a bit so I could have got more of its colouring but was still pleased to add another bird to my list.


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HOUSE FINCHES

The bright head of the house finch caught my eye, I didn’t see the less colourful female when I took the picture. Most finches I’ve seen are more rosy coloured. This one must have found a good crop of red berries as diet can effect their colouring.


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PEREGRINE FALCON (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

I was surprised to see a peregrine falcon as I passed along the shore. Peregrines swoop down on their prey from the air so it wasn’t hunting, probably just cooling off in the lake. Except for the falcon no other bird or squirrel was in sight.


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BARRED OWL

The barred owl or hoot owl is very common in Ontario though I’ve only seen one twice. Like most owls they are nocturnal but both my sightings were during the day. This owl was just slightly off the main path, I happened to look up and there he was.


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NORTHERN CARDINAL

I took this photo in late July, so I think the cardinal had just begun to molt. Molting begins after mating season and before the cold weather sets in. They can look pretty rough over several weeks but this bird still looked pretty spiffy.


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PEREGRINE FALCON

On a drive one day, we stopped at a reserve that advertised a wild bird display. This peregrine falcon was waiting his turn and seemed to look in my direction so I took the shot. I’m not a great fan of these events but the birds were beautiful and if people take away an appreciation of them it can only help conservation efforts.


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BALTIMORE ORIOLE

There are nine species of Orioles in North America; both the Baltimore Oriole and Orchard Oriole can be found here in the east but I’ve yet to see an Orchard Oriole. This colourful bird usually shows up in May and stays the summer.


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DOWNY WOODPECKER

Downy Woodpeckers are the smallest of the woodpeckers and quite numerous. We enjoy them year round. They don’t cache food but survive the winter by excavating the trees for overwintering insects. They are also a frequent visitor to bird feeders.


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BROWN CREEPER (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

This was a first for me and the only time I’ve ever seen a brown creeper, so it was pretty exciting. Their numbers are declining in the eastern part of North America, due to habitat loss, so I was particularly happy to see one. It’s called a brown creeper but I thought it looked more like it was hugging the tree as it foraged for insects.


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CANADA GEESE (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Canada Geese may have their detractors but on a lake in the fall they are among my favourite subjects. They’ve had their young and territory is no longer an issue so scenes like this are common. Ottawa is a city that includes a lot of rural land, so you don’t have to go too far to see them flying in their wonderful V formations (or echelons) as they head south.


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FEMALE WOOD DUCK

I took this in late October 2019. Except for a quick drive to the lake this summer, I haven’t returned. I did see wood ducks on that visit though. Despite the year we’ve had the birds arrived as usual and will migrate back in the spring. This constant is encouraging. With some luck the coming year will have us all headed in the right direction.


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CHICKADEE

I usually see chickadees out in the open flitting from branch to branch. I caught this bird in a quiet moment well off the path in challenging light. I liked the photo but hesitated before posting it because of the flare at the bottom of the image. Still worth featuring though.

On another note, a few of you let me know that you were unable to see the image that accompanied my last post. Mike Bizeau of naturehasnoboss.com had the same problem and suggested I set my image as a featured image. Like Mike, this has altered the appearance of my website (a change I don’t like) but until this glitch has been fixed I will continue to post in this way and hope you will all see my images.

 


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SOUTHWARD BOUND

I saw this white-throated sparrow last October. Although many remain in North America during the winter, given our cold climate, I believe this one was just passing through on its way south. There was plenty for it to eat on this warm fall day.


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GREEN HERON

I watched as the green heron carefully scanned the water looking for a passing fish. It watched, it patrolled, and waited some more. All the herons I’ve photographed are the most patient of fishermen, more patient than this photographer. I took some photos and left the bird as I continued my walk.


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PILEATED WOODPECKER (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

I usually see pileated woodpeckers high up in the trees, rarely on the ground. As we were walking along we came across this bird excavating the bark of a fallen tree. It must have been full of insects because he continued on long after we had taken our fill of photographs and moved on.


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MALE YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER

Although quite common, I’ve only seen a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker once, a few years ago. They are fairly small and beautifully patterned woodpeckers. We heard the bird hammering away at a tree and followed the sound. It was busy feeding and wasn’t at all bothered by our presence.