June 4th – Townsend Sewage Lagoons
The journey from Burlington to Townsend, Ontario was lovely. It’s always an adventure to leave the familiar for the unfamiliar. We were unsure what to expect. Would we be turned off by the sights and smells? We, well I, worried needlessly. It’s a gorgeous spot.
A singing male Bobolink greeted us warmly then headed off to a nearby field.
We, in turn, greeted two Burlington birders, who put us on to our target species, the Wilson’s Phalarope. The female Wilson’s Phalarope is larger and more colourful than the male.
During our stay we observed Killdeer (many), Canada Geese (numerous), Savannah Sparrows, an Eastern Kingbird, Spotted Sandpipers, a Least Sandpiper, two Northern Shovelers, and others.
Prior to our departure, we put two newly arrived birders on to the female Phalarope.
Then on to the Tollgate Ponds on Eastport Drive. Quite a number of Ring-billed chicks have hatched. They are easily photographed, having hatched immediately behind the concrete barrier. Do pop by if you can. They are incredibly cute!
After lunch we checked in at Bronte Marina, Oakville, to check in on Cliff Swallows and the two Red-necked Grebe nests.
The Cliff Swallows are confronted by heavy competition from the House Sparrows.
This snapping turtle was digging when I arrived at Hendrie Valley Park.
Nearby her previous nest lay exposed, having been destroyed by a predator, likely a racoon or mink.
Further on, an Eastern Phoebe rested on a branch, undisturbed by my presence.
My last stop was Spencer Smith Park where a Common Tern slowed down enough for me to get a couple in flight shots.
Parched and hungry, I walked over to my favourite coffee shop. Overhead, at the intersection of John and Pine Streets, Chimney Swifts were twittering as they zoomed by.
A pair of Barn Swallows have constructed a nest in the corner of the parking garage at the above-noted intersection. This swallow will dive-bomb pedestrians if they linger too long.
This was the last photo I took before the bird went after me!