Bruce Mactavish, John Pratt and I spent the morning birding various sites along the Ottawa River and a couple of inland locations. Overall, lots of activity and very low water levels along the river. At Shirley's Bay there was a small number of shorebirds including 2 Greater Yellowlegs, 15+ Semipalmated Sandpiper, 1 Short-billed Dowitcher and 1 Sanderling. There was a small movement of land birds mainly warblers including 1 singing Northern Parula, 2 Yellow-rumped, 20+ Yellow, and a few Black and White Warbler. Also present were 2 Great Egret and 3 Caspian Tern. At the Richmond Sewage Lagoon water level were low and the first cell was dry and the second cell had a nice selection of shorebirds including 1 Semipalmated Plover, 1 Solitary Sandpiper, 20+ Least Sandpiper and 150+ Killdeer. The 3rd cell was full of cattails and dry. At the Trail Road Landfill Facility (including ponds) we observed 14 Ruddy Duck, 7 Ring-necked Duck, 11 Pied-billed Grebe and 20+ Turkey Vulture.
At Deschenes Rapids we observed an amazing 34 juvenile Black-crowned Night-Heron and two nests of Great Egrets, one with 3 visible young and the second nest was likely active too but due to the vegetation couldn't confirm young. This is the first confirmed nesting of great egret for the Ottawa-Gatineau district. These birds have been present and under observation since late May on Conroy Island.
Good Birding, Bruce
Directions: Britannia Pier and Dick Bell Park: Both areas are accessible from Carling Ave. west of Carling and Richmond Rd. intersection.
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.
Directions: Deschenes Rapids is located along the Ottawa River at Britannia. Britannia Point is accessible from Britannia Water Filtration Plant Deschenes Rapids
Directions: From Ottawa take Hwy 417 west to Hwy 416. South on the 416 to exit 66 (Fallowfield Rd.) Right (west) on Fallowfield to Moodie Dr. Left (south) on Moodie, go past Trail Rd. on your left and Cambrian Rd. on your right until you come to a very large sand & gravel operation on the left (east) side of the road. ***PLEASE NOTE*** - do NOT cross the gate to the sand & gravel operation. This is private property, and most of the birds can be well-viewed from the road. The landfill site is located on Trail Road. There is no access but the gulls can be viewed from Trail Road just south of the main entrance.
Great Egrets nesting on Conroy Island, Deschenes Rapids. First nesting record for the Ottawa-Gatineau ditrict.