Hey Birders, Brandon Holden and I toured the north shore of Lake Erie from Port Stanley to Nanticoke. We followed the lakeshore (Front Road) the entire way. Despite the heavy snowfall we came across some nice sightings.
Bohemian Waxwing - 1 at the Port Stanley Arena/School with a flock of 80+ Cedar's -- pretty far south for a BOWA (at least, farthest south I've seen)
Savannah Sparrow - 1 at a feeder in the town of Copenhagen
Spotted Towhee - 1 at Aaron Allensen's feeders, just east of Port Burwell, was with at least 2 Eastern Towhee's The spotted towhee at Aarons' feeder has white at the base of the primaries! This is usually a feature associated with hybrids (Eastern Towhee's have no spots, other than white at the base of the primaries... Whereas Spotted Towhee's usually have white everywhere but the primaries. With that said, the Sibley guide comments that apparently pure Spotted Towhee's can have white here - so where does that leave us?
Well we aged the bird as an adult (red eye) and is a male - that is very extensively marked. I would suspect that this extremely well marked adult male could very easily be one of these "pure" Spotted Towhee's with extra white... As I'd guess a hybrid shouldn't look this fancy! (more intermediate in other ways, esp. for an adult male). Anywho
Chipping Sparrow - 2 at a feeder with ~200 A. Tree Sparrow's in Houghton Centre, 1 'Cassiar' Dark-eyed Junco also present - one with a very reddish cap was aged as an adult.. would usually expect these lingering/out of season birds to be young birds..
'Green' morph Pine Siskin - 2 at the Finney's feeder at Long Point - probably one of our most spectacular birds of the day. We sat at the Finney's backyard feeder, not 20ft from the birds, and had incredible views of these two "Green Morphs" (aka Super-colourful Siskins) for several minutes
Other species seen included several flocks of the following: Rusty Blackbirds (~30 in total), Red-winged Blackbird (~120 seen), Brown-headed Cowbird (~200), White-throated Sparrow (~25), Song Sparrow (~20), Merlin (1) and Northern Flicker (2).