Saturday, January 31, 2009

Amherst Island Birding

Birded Amherst Island today. Despite the -20 C temperature this morning, birding was good. Due to snow conditions,we parked along the South Shore Road and walked in to the "Owl Woods." We observed 5 Northern Saw-whet Owls and 6 Long-eared Owls. On our walk out we observed one Northern Shrike. We drove around the island roads and counted 47 Rough-legged Hawk, 16 Red-tailed Hawk, 3 American Kestrel, 11 Snowy Owl and 2 Short-eared Owl. There were 140+ Snow Bunting along the South Shore Road. Overall a good outing.

At the DuPont Plant/Elevator Bay pond we observed 6 Ring-necked Duck, 6 Hooded Merganser, 16 American Coot and 3 Gadwall among the 1000+ Mallards and 200+ American Black Duck.

Please review OFO's Ethical Birding Principles.

Good birding,

Directions:Amherst Island:
Located 18 km. west of Kingston. Exit off Hwy. 401 at exit 593 (County Rd. 4, Camden East) and drive south to the very end (Millhaven). Turn right on Hwy. 33 and drive 100 metres until you see the sign for the Amherst Island ferry. The ferry (20 minute trip) leaves the mainland on the half hour and leaves the island on the hour. Cost is $8.00 Canadian round trip. There are no gas stations on the island. There are restrooms on the ferry, and at the island ferry dock. The East End K.F.N. property is at the easternmost part of the island on the east side of the Lower Forty Foot Road. To reach the Owl Woods, turn left (east) at the four-way stop sign by the general store and drive 3.4 km along Front Rd. to the (seasonal) Marshall Forty-Foot Rd. Marshall Forty-Foot Rd. is across the road from house #2320. Drive along Marshall Rd. to the mid-way point, where there is an "S" in the road (1.2 km, look for the K.F.N. kiosk which had owl observing ethics). Park in the gravel lane or off the road edge. Because of liability issues, visitors to the Kingston Field Naturalists' property at the east end of Amherst Island MUST be accompanied by a KFN member. For KFN contact information or how to become a member, please visit

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