Cattle Egret, Cranes and a Blue-head: November 18, 2021

Colonel Sam Smith Park proved once again that it is one of our finest birding areas.

On the same docks where we often see Snowy Owls in winter, a Cattle Egret had come to roost.

Cattle Egret

This African species was first reported in North American in 1941 in Florida and in 1956 in Ontario.

Cattle Egret
Cattle Egret with gulls

In Africa it follows elephants and other big grazing animals picking off insects they kick up.

Cattle Egret (photo: flickr)

Cattle serve this purpose in North America.

Cattle Egret (photo: birdnote)

The shrill calls of the Sandhill Crane alerted me to a flyover by several. Cranes fly with the necks outstretched.

Sandhill Cranes

I got these photos of a crane in June in Northern Ontario.

Sandhill Crane
Sandhill Crane
Sandhill Crane

It is rare for a Blue-headed Vireo to be in the Toronto region past early October but we had a straggler this morning:

Blue-headed Vireo
Blue-headed Vireo
Blue-headed Vireo

Other birds:

Hooded Merganser (male)
Great Blue Heron
Hooded Merganser (male)
Hooded Merganser (female)
Hooded Merganser (male)
American Black Duck
American Black Ducks
Gadwalls
Gadwall (male)
Ring-billed Gull
Bufflehead (male)
American Tree Sparrow
American Wigeon (male)
Canada Geese
American Tree Sparrow
American Coot and American Wigeon
Canada Geese
American Tree Sparrow
Canada Geese
Mute Swan
House Sparrow (male)
Red-necked Grebe
American Robin
House Sparrow (female)
European Starlings
House Sparrow (male)
Mute Swan
Ring-billed Gull
European Starling
Canada Goose
European Starlings
House Finch (male)
Mourning Dove
House Finch (female)
American Tree Sparrow
Great Blue Heron
American Goldfinch
Red-breasted Merganser (female)

Today’s group:

NATURE POETRY

In the dreamy silence
Of the afternoon, a
Cloth of gold is woven
Over wood and prairie.     Alexander Posey (1873–1908)

Miles Hearn

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