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Posts tagged “migration

Almost a Wild Goose Chase

Went on the Snow Goose Chase yesterday. The migration was early this year and we were late, as the chase often is held in April. however we saw lots of species, 57 to be exact.

The group was enthusiastic and we were rewarded with a smaller remaining flock of snowgeese.We all roared with delight when someone yelled to the driver, “Stop! Stop! There they are!” We were treated to snacks and a warm buffet in Tofield plus there were  scopes, field guides and extra binoculars to share. A few companies sponsor this event but it is organized by the Edmonton Nature Club and we had spotters driving ahead of us and guides on the bus pointing out the various birds. it was a lot of fun. No lifers for me , but it was a thrill to see Black Backed Stilts and a Marbled Godwit through the provided scopes, unfortunately too far for my camera.

Here are some photos of some of the species-most are a distance away, to be expected on a bus tour. Kudos to the Edmonton Nature Club and its dedicated volunteers of expert birders. They will be having some walks in the upcoming season and I hope to join them.

Bonaparte’s Gulls

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Song Sparrow

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American White Pelicans

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Yellow-Headed Blackbird

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Mountain Bluebird -Male

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Mountain Bluebird – Female

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A Gaggle of Snow Geese

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Greater White- Fronted Goose

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American Avocet

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and a terrific sky that had me running back to the bus to change lens.

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Mighty Migrators

This is a photo of a bird being released after being banded. This event that took place at the Ellis Bird Farm is a big deal especially to the scientific community.In this photo the host of Ellis Bird Farm, Myrna Pearman, is holding the female Purple Martin The attachments to the birds are geo-locators. They are sensitive to light and can tell the scientists how much light there is and with  this information, pinpoint location and how fast they travel. The reason why they attached this back pack at this location is that this area of Alberta is  one of the northern points in the Purple Martin’s migration. Scientist Bridget Stutchbury discovered one of the birds that were fitted with a geo-locator travelled from Brazil to Pennsylvania in 13 days, an average of 233-577 km per day.Amazing feat.

You will hear more from me about the Ellis Bird Farm when I hopefully will attend the bluebird festival in July- they support the highest nesting density of Mountain Bluebirds ever recorded. Right now they are not doing tours because some of the population suffered as a result of a spring snow storm in past years.

©Jane Chesebrough

©Jane Chesebrough

©Jane Chesebrough