This past Friday morn, I wanted to get up early so we could go on an early walk, hopefully to benefit from the more abundant sighting luck we tend to have in the AMs. Sunrise is now 5:30 as opposed to 7am so we do miss the rising of the sun this time of year, but still get out early enough to have more luck spotting bird and animal life.
We started out at Halls Rd. in Whitby, walked tot he lookout (not much life this visit) and continued on the path that leads to the shore of Lake Ontario. Then, it's a about a 1/2 hr saunter east along the stones and sand shoreline, with a few grappling over or under fallen or growing trees outcrops, to the path that leads up to Lynde Shores Conservation Area. This leads around the marsh. Well, that morn, gawd knows What occurred weather wise to bring all kinds of rotting driftwood pieces and loads of small dead fish. The terrain appeared odd and the the odour was difficult to handle in areas. Not usual that is for sure. We could not think of any large enough wind and rain storms that would have brought all that debris onto the shore, and quite a distance in from the water edge too.
We decided we would venture onto the paths that lead to Lynde Shores. We spotted a deer in the brush near the tall wooden look out tower, saw a cat bird, tons of warblers and Vesper Sparrows, an Alder Flycatcher, Blue Jays, and Orioles. We hoped to see a mink again, having seen one run across the path a few days earlier in the evening. We ran into an older couple, 38 year residents of the area south of Lynde Shores, who talked about the history of the area and also shared some of their sightings over the years. They had seen a mom possum with babies on her back, and a hawk eating a warbler, and other interesting things. Off the wood pier/dock at Lynde Shores, we laughed at all the splashing by the paired carp probably spawning in the shallow water.
Since I did not want to walk back along the lake shore path, we decided we'd walk out through the Lynde Shores entrance, onto Highway 2, and back over to Halls Rd. then down to where the car was. Luckily we did this, what ended up adding up to an over 3 hr trek that morning, because if not we would never have run across the guys parked and out with their cameras and binoculars. At first, spotting at a distance, 2 or 3 guys parked on a side road, or some lone car stopped for no apparent reason, etc., I always am a bit wary as to Why and What. Then, once I spot the cameras or binocs, relief sets in lol! Ok, they are just birders or photogs and obviously see something interesting. These particular guys were watching a Kingbird nest. One bird was on the nest and the other was perched farther off, on a tall grass. The nest was close, just above my head by 2ft or so, and I was able to grab a shot of the bird on it.