Monday, June 30, 2014

Quiz Answers


Almost forgot the quiz answers to an old post -

annnddd.... the replies put online were correct!

1. Warbling Vireo
2. Lapland Longspur
3. American Robin
4. Chipping Sparrow
5. Northern Cardinal
6. Common Grackle
7. Unknown crow species....
8. Red-winged Blackbird
9. American Goldfinch
10. Blue-headed Vireo
11. Eastern Kingbird
12. Blue Jay (x2)
13. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

--- You may notice, that people went with Fish Crow and American Crow for the "crow" photo... I had several photos of the bird, most of which looked better for Fish Crow than American Crow (taken this May at Pelee) - but I'm not really sure how reliable that method is for separating them (with photos) as they seem to be variable (???) - anyone want to make a case?


I've still got some more bad photos like this, so expect to see a quiz again soon! They seem to be fairly popular...


Sunday, June 29, 2014

Monster storm in MB

Monstrosity spinning in MB - ~980mb is huge for late June/July

Winds feeding into the thing from all over the continent... 

Will it bring rares into Ontario? Would Lake Superior or James Bay be the best places?!

I won't be around to find out... 

Friday, June 27, 2014



The "big" great lakes are waaay below average temps... Hudson bay is looking strange with above and below average areas... 

Both May 2014 and April 2014 were THEE WARMEST months (of their names) since record keeping began for the entire world. ever!

The sunspot situation is looking realllly boring right now. Hopefully it picks up in a few days. 

ENSO regions continue to warm up! El nino time?! 

Big storm in SK/MB will bring the heat to southern Ontario next week. Will it bring any warm southerly birds with it? 


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

And then there was a Hermit Thrush

First bird that I intentionally tried to document with my new "field" camera... I think it works!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

OBRC report sample - another one I didn't "find"

To go along with the post from earlier, another "sample" of something I sent to the OBRC.... This time, the Pelee Scissor-tailed Flycatcher that we saw fly off the very tip!


Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Point Pelee National Park (Tip)

May 11, 2014

While watching a light "reverse migration" at Point Pelee, Ken Berhens
yelled out this bird as it flew off the tip of Pelee. Its flight was
steady and direct - heading way out over lake erie and lost from

The bird (based on P10) appears to be a male, and showed no obvious
feather wear. I compared photos to the bird seen at Blue Heron two
days earlier, and could see no differences - although there was also
no distinctive marks to confirm this.

Description: see photo

Notes: a male Western Kingbird flew off the tip not long earlier,
spotted by Cameron Cox. The wind was light (Beaufort 0-1) and it was



I added the spotter, a brief weather note and the photo to help flesh out the record a bit. Didn't take much effort! !!!

If these posts haven't convinced you, what will!? 

Monday, June 23, 2014

The "North American Gulls" facebook group

So - a blog post about the North American Gulls facebook group! Where could this be headed? -


I have no idea what it's like...

Know why?

- Because it's on facebook! And I'm not signed up for facebook... Therefore, I'm not allowed to participate... The only hope I have of seeing marvelous gull photos on there, is if I sucumb to the facebook mandate and make an account.

I'm then left with two options:

1. - Make a proper account, and let the world know that I've folded to Facebooks wishes

2. - Make a "fake" account, and just be "Joe Steve" who seems to sporadically appear on the North American Gulls facebook page, frequently posting Brandon Holden's photos...

And I'm not happy with either of those options.


Which makes me wonder. How is facebook one of the most popular websites there is? The internet seemed to be a leap forward in our world. Making things more ACCESSIBLE than ever before. 

How many people are out buying new encyclopedias these days? 

Yet we have Facebook - a way of digitizing the "old fashion" human experience where you could visibly inform the world that you and steve were "friends" - or visibly show people that you are more popular than they are (eg,/ more total friends). Never mind the ability to digitally "ignore" people or attempt to hurt someones feelings by "unfriending" them. Yikes!

Never mind the "poke" button.

SO - there's my blog post for the day. What do you say, North American Gull group folk? Any hope of pulling that baby off of facebook? Or am I one of the sore few left behind as the world moves forward? 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Another passerine in flight quiz!!!

Think you got the "right" stuff? A new quiz for Passerines in flight. Once again, the first person who correctly identifies every bird wins no prize. Hopefully you'll have a bit of fun looking at the photos though!

Give it a whirl! 13 images, 14 birds!