Report on Trip to Rondeau


On Sunday, May 15th, four hardy individuals from the Strathroy Area Bird Club, left the Seniors Centre parking area at 8 AM for Rondeau Provincial Park.  It was raining and the forecast called for continued rain all day.  But birds don’t follow weather forecasts the way humans do.  At least, it doesn’t have the same impact on their behavior.  So, with out binoculars, our sack lunches and our rain gear, off we went.

It takes a little over an hour to drive from Strathroy to Rondeau.  We had a good drive, introducing ourselves and getting to know each other.  The drive took us down Thames Road, thru Appin and on thru Dutton.  We turned west at Wallacetown toward Rondeau and followed the Talbot Line (#3 Highway) to Morpeth.  Then south at Morpeth and into Rondeau Provincial Park.

We headed straight for the visitor centre in the middle of the park.  The visitor centre is equipped with a book store and various displays of stuffed animals and birds.  There is also a large picture window that looks out onto a “feedng” area for the birds.  There are numerous bird feeders  and pond.  Chairs are set up so visitors and comfortable sit and observe the birds thru the window.  For the month of May, the “Friends of Rondeau” have coffee, bagels, muffins and soup available for a small fee/donation.

Following our coffee and refreshment, we headed to the Spicebush Trail, a 1 km trail that circles around a number of sloughs.  A number of boardwalks make the walking quite easy.   We met other birders along the way and shared sightings with each other.  We took our time, spending two hours to make the circular route around Spicebush Trail.

Then we headed back to the Visitor Centre for a bathroom break and more coffee and hot soup.  It was also a good time to catch up on what other birders were seeing and where.

Following the break, we headed over to Bennett Road and the viewing areas that are set up along this stretch of paved roadway.  And following that we decided to drive along Lakeshore Road and the cottages that line the lakeshore along this stretch of road in the park.  One of the cottages had a nice feeding area for orioles.  We counted 16 Baltimore Orioles gathered around the various feeders they had set up.  It was an amazing sight.

Altogether, we saw 48 species of birds, despite less than ideal viewing conditions.  Here is a list of the birds we saw:

  • CANADA GOOSE
  • MUTE SWAN
  • MALLARD
  • WILD TURKEY
  • KILLDEER
  • RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD
  • DOWNY WOODPECKER
  • NORTHERN FLICKER
  • EASTERN PHOEBE
  • BLUE-HEADED VIREO
  • RED-EYED VIREO
  • BLUE JAY
  • TREE SWALLOW
  • BARN SWALLOW
  • RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH
  • RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET
  • BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER
  • VEERY
  • GRAY-CHEEKED THRUSH
  • SWAINSON’S THRUSH
  • WOOD THRUSH
  • AMERICAN ROBIN
  • GRAY CATBIRD
  • EUROPEAN STARLING
  • NORTHERN PARULA
  • YELLOW WARBLER
  • CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER
  • MAGNOLIA WARBLER
  • BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER
  • BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER
  • AMERICAN REDSTART
  • COMMON YELLOWTHROAT
  • CANADA WARBLER
  • SCARLET TANAGER
  • CHIPPING SPARROW
  • WHITE-THROATED SPARROW
  • WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW
  • NORTHERN CARDINAL
  • ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK
  • RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD
  • COMMON GRACKLE
  • BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD
  • BALTIMORE ORIOLE
  • PURPLE FINCH
  • HOUSE FINCH
  • PINE SISKEN
  • AMERICAN GOLDFINCH
  • HOUSE SPARROW
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One response to this post.

  1. Wow, you certainly saw a lot of varieties of birds on your trip. I noticed that you mentioned following the spicebush trail. Did you know that the unassuming little spicebush that grows along the edge of lakes and streams gets it’s name from the leaves. If you crush them they smell like spicy cookies.

    Reply

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