Hooded Mergansers at Humber Bay (10 am & 1 pm groups) /October 29, 2019

We had many bird species today on a day which ranged from heavy fog to sunshine and temperatures from 9 to 16 degrees.

Species list: red-necked grebe, great blue heron, mute swan, Canada goose, mallard, gadwall, bufflehead, long-tailed duck, hooded merganser, herring gull, ring-billed gull, rock pigeon, belted kingfisher, downy woodpecker, eastern phoebe, blue jay, black-capped chickadee, brown creeper, ruby-crowned kinglet, golden-crowned kinglet,  European starling, house sparrow, red-winged blackbird, northern cardinal, American goldfinch, dark-eyed junco, song sparrow.  (27 species)

There were 8 Hooded Mergansers mixed in with about a dozen Gadwall:

Hooded Mergansers
Gadwall with Hooded Merganser (male)
Hooded Mergansers

a few winter ducks were also present:

Long-tailed Duck (female)
Bufflehead (female)

You can see in these photos why Starlings are called “starlings”. White dots on a dark breast. This is their winter plumage.

European Starling in Autumn Olive bush
European Starling in Autumn Olive bush
European Starling in Autumn Olive bush

Other birds:

Herring Gull & Ring-billed Gulls
American Robin in Mountain Ash
Ring-billed Gulls
Mute Swan
Song Sparrow
Rock Pigeon

Other nature:

Woolly Aphid on European Alder
Spindle Tree (Euonymus europaea)
Spider Web

Park views:

10 a.m. group (2 photos as more arrived later:

1 p.m. group:


O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.                        – Robert Frost (1874–1963)

Miles Hearn

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