Friday, September 8, 2017

Road Trip to Kenora

On August 25th, my girlfriend Lindsey and I packed up the car and headed off towards Kenora for a week long trip.  It was not a birding trip rather a trip home for Lindsey, but I hoped to get as much birding in as I could.

Before just we left the Algoma District, while stopped at the A&W in White River, four Red Crossbills flew over, calling away.

We broke up the trip and stopped in Terrace Bay for the night.  The highlights of the drive up there two bull moose near the side of the highway, a Common Nighthawk and a Red-tailed Hawk.  My Thunder Bay District bird list was seriously lacking, so I was able to add quite a few common birds to the list while driving.  I hoped to find some cool shorebirds down at the Terrace Bay Beach, but a Spotted Sandpiper was as much as I got.  By the time we left the Thunder Bay District, I was up to 41 species.  Quick stops at rest areas really helped get the smaller birds that would almost impossible to see while driving.

We entered the Kenora District, where my list was a little better, but definitely could be greatly added to.  Throughout the week, I was consistently able to find birds in between all the family visits and fishing on Lake of the Woods.  We went walleye fishing on Lake of the Woods our first day and we sure did well fishing.  Better yet, American White Pelicans and Bonaparte's Gulls were out and about on the lake.
American White Pelican

Bonaparte's Gull

Lindsey's dad lives on Rabbit Lake, a small lake at the north edge of Kenora.  While fishing on the lake, I was able to find plenty of small passerines and even a couple shorebirds.  A Boreal Chickadee was in with some Black-capped Chickadees and there was a variety of warblers. A Killdeer and a Semipalmated Sandpiper were chilling on one of the beaches before a dog came along and flushed them.

A trip of the Old Man Lake, probably an hour and a half north of Kenora, produced a Black-backed Woodpecker, an Olive-sided Flycatcher and two Gray Jays.  We pulled some nice bass out of  the water there too.

Not of the other species were really that exciting.  I was just able to find a decent amount of the common birds, despite really dedicating much time to strictly birding.

On the drive home, just before Vermilion Bay, a Black-billed Magpie flew up from the side of the road and into a tree.  In the fields just before Dryden, there was a Northern Harrier, some Savannah Sparrow and a Hairy Woodpecker, making my final Kenora District list for the trip at 90.  This gave me an even 100 species for my Kenora District Life List.

The drive back through Thunder Bay featured a crazy thunderstorm, with hail.  This greatly limited the birds sightings, of course.  We arrived in Nipigon for the night and her I was able to add a few more species.  Once we arrived back in Algoma, I was up to 49 species for the Thunder Bay District.  Not bad considering it was only at like seven before the trip.

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