Fraternizing with the Locals

As we work further into the Fall, those birds that have been with us from spring into late Summer, like the Warblers and Shorebirds, have mostly moved on. Now we are left with those hearty birds who live with us through the Winter or those tough guys from the North, who think this is the South. As well, we do get those birds which decide to come to the coast, rather than spend the winter inland.


Blue Jay

The most common of those birds that we find across the province is the Blue Jay. These birds are with us all year. We see them, individually and more secretly, throughout the breeding season but as the weather changes in the Fall they begin to collect in flocks and become a lot more vocal and obvious. As winter progresses the flocks continue to grow until one can find flocks of thirty or more at your feeder.

Another favourite in the province is the Black-capped Chickadee. These birds are with us all year long and are active at our feeders throughout the year, much to the delight of everyone. Those who might be new to birding find the Chickadee easy to identify and this in turn might lead them to develop their interest further.

Black-capped Chicadee

Black-capped Chickadee

But Fall also brings some exciting and colourful birds to Prince Edward Island. Some of those are the Waterfowl that pass through in the later stages of migration or who might just be coming into the area in hope of open water and the chance of food. These include some birds like the Northern Shoveller, Hooded Merganser, Wood Ducks and Loons, both Red-throated and Common, which are frequently seen off our coasts. Also, if we are lucky and determined to get out as the weather becomes more inclement, we might get to find some Purple Sandpiper and Harlequin Ducks.

A distant flock of Red-throated Loons off Cavendish Shore.

A distant flock of Red-throated Loons off Cavendish Shore.

The subtle beauty of a Gadwall

The subtle beauty of a Gadwall.

Hooded Merganser

Hooded Merganser with a Mallard

Northern Shoveller wirh Black Duck

Northern Shoveller wirh Black Duck

With this in mind, the next activity for some of us is an Event with Birding on PEI and NaturePEI called “Get Your Duck On”. We will be visiting an number of sites in and around the Prince Edward Island National Park to find what birds we can in the area. Hopefully, we can scope out some of the great fall waterfowl as well as other birds that might be local, or just passing through.

In a previous post listing birding sites across Canada, I noticed that there were none related to Prince Edward Island. In fact, there are a few sites you might like to view. These are:

In checking the lists above, you will see that recent sightings include Fox Sparrows, a Pileated Woodpecker, an atypical Red-tailed Hawk and a rare juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron.


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