The birding along the Ottawa River continues to improve with record low water levels and lots of exposed mudflats mainly at Shirley's Bay, Andrew Haydon Park and Britannia Pier. Ben and I did a quick check at various locations along the river and observed 9 Great Egret, 6 at Britannia and 3 at Shirley's Bay, 21 Black-crowned Night-Heron at Britannia including 19 juveniles! These are likely from the small breeding colony at Deschenes Rapids. Hundreds of ring-billed Gulls roosting at the rapids along with 8 adult Great Black-backed Gull. Shorebirds along the river included small numbers of Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs, 1 Pectoral Sandpiper, 2 Solitary Sandpiper and 10+ Spotted Sandpiper. There were 3 American woodcock feeding along the trail at Shirley's Bay at dusk.
Directions: Shirley's Bay: From Ottawa take Hwy. 417 west to the Moodie Drive exit and turn north (right) on Moodie Drive and continue to Carling Ave. Turn left at Carling Ave. and follow Carling to Rifle Road. Turn right (north) on Rifle Rd. Park at the lot at the end (boat launch).
Walk back to the road, and continue through the gate on the Department of National Defense property. There is a trail on your right (clearly marked with vehicle "No Entry" signs) which heads into the woods, and, eventually to the dyke. There is lots of POISON IVY along the dyke.
**** PLEASE NOTE**** YOU MUST OBTAIN PERMISSION FROM THE RANGE CONTROL
OFFICE BEFORE ENTERING THE DYKE AREA-- Call (613) 991-5740 and request
permission to visit the dyke area for birding.