I spend a couple of hours this afternoon birding the open water along the Ottawa River at Deschenes and Remic Rapids. Overall it was quiet but there was still at least one of the three Red-necked Grebes that were found on February 8th. The grebe was off Britannia Point at the Britannia Filtration Plant. There was a small number of Common Goldeneye 25+, 1 Common Merganser and 1 Long-tailed duck which has been present since late December. While scanning over the ice below the rapids I observed 2 Snowy Owls sitting out in the middle of the frozen river and another one above the rapids out on Lake Deschenes. Interestingly, 14 Snowy Owls were counted on February 4th along the Ottawa River between Deschenes Rapids and Constance Bay. All the owls were sitting well out on the ice.
The Red-necked Grebe is extremely rare during the winter months in the Ottawa-Gatineau district.
With a few Snowy Owls at Deschenes Rapids it may be only time before this grebe becomes a meal.