Fifty Point Marina

Fifty Point Marina

Fifty Point Marina

November 7th

What’s not to like about Fifty Point Marina?  While I waltz off on my own, my travelling companion enjoys a spot of fishing.

Common Mergansers ruled the air and lake.  By a fellow birder’s estimate, the throng numbered 1,500!

Common Mergansers

Common Mergansers

Common Mergansers in flight

Common Mergansers in flight

Once the mergansers settled on the lake it was easier to spot Common Loons, Long-tailed Ducks, Scaups, cormorants and a Horned Grebe.

Common Loons

Common Loons

Common Loon

Common Loon

Long-tailed Ducks (male)

Long-tailed Ducks (male)

Horned Grebe

Horned Grebe

This female Ring-necked Duck was a nice find.

Ring-necked Duck

Ring-necked Duck

We spent quite a bit of time observing the mergansers.  It soon became apparent that once the gulls (ring-billed and herring) detected a school of fish the mergansers et al. joined in the feeding frenzy.

Gull and merganser feeding frenzy

Gull and merganser feeding frenzy

November 14th

Lasalle Marina was my first stop.  The bright spark in the overcast morning was an encounter with two of three Carolina Wrens.   Two were noisily foraging in the leaves in front of me while one was singing in the west.

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren profile

Carolina Wren profile

This wren found what appeared to be an awfully weird looking morsel.  The wren hopped into the open, trying two or three times to consume the tidbit.  Well, my curious daughter, in sharpening the photographs, screamed, “Come quick!  Look!”  The morsel consisted of multiple larva encased in web/silk.

Eyeing the insect sack

Eyeing the insect sack

Retrieving the insect sack

Retrieving the insect sack

Consuming insect sack

Consuming insect sack

Next stop was Spencer Smith Park to check for waterfowl.  Scoters, scaups and buffleheads were slowly drifting in from the west, near Emma’s Backporch.  Too far for photographs.

A stop at the naval memorial was in order, given the previous day’s tragedy.

Naval memorial at Spencer Smith Park

Naval memorial at Spencer Smith Park

Final stop was a return trip to Fifty Point Marina.  Although many of the Common Mergansers seen the previous week were no longer present, I was not disappointed.  We had excellent views of this Surf Scoter.

Surf Scoter

Surf Scoter

Close-up of Surf Scoter

Close-up of Surf Scoter

On our return to the marina a hungry and very vocal Red-tailed Hawk flew by.

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

We spent some time at the marina, he fishing and I observing a group of Buffleheads whilst seated on the bleachers.

Fifty Point Marina

Fifty Point Marina

Two female and two male Buffleheads

Two female and two male Buffleheads

Four female Buffleheads

Four female Buffleheads

We chatted with a lad practicing his flyfishing technique in advance of his trip to Saugeen River.  He explained his introduction to the sport, the skill set required, etc.  On learning that he took lessons at Grindstone Angling, a Waterdown-based fly shop, I thought, “hmmmh, would make a great gift”.

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