As June was past and we looked forward to the birds of Summer, our focus on the birds is changing. Rather than being occupied by looking for the arrival of migrants, people are finding birds that are in the midst of their breeding cycles and we are seeing birds that are in stages of raising young and recently fledged birds.
Osprey numbers have increased nicely over the time I have been on the Island and both natural nests, and those on constructed platforms, can be spotted throughout the province. At the same time, other birds are being impacted by a variety of causes, and efforts are being made to assist them. There are programs taking place on the Island such as building nest boxes and bird banding to provide us with new information as to how our birds are faring.
One such program is on Hummingbirds. The program was proposed by Brenda Penak through the Island Nature Trust. Over one week in July, Brenda and Cindy Cartwright, one of Canada’s foremost Hummingbird researchers, created a Hummingbird Garden in Victoria Park, Charlottetown, gave presentations on our Ruby-throated Hummingbirds and trapped and banded Hummingbirds.
Similar programs are taking place across the Island on American Kestrels, Piping Plovers and Woodland birds. There are also studies and surveys on Bobolink and Barn Swallows.
In the meantime, life goes on with the birds.
There was a late season bird walk in an area of the Island known as the Devil’s Punchbowl with the Trout River Watershed Committee.
Now, with July over and August upon us, our shores are being littered with birds on their southerly migration. The Bonaparte’s Gulls numbers are more evident and shorebirds are increasing daily. I say bring it on!