Eurasian Wigeon

It was cool, windy and wet when I made my way to Reifel to help out on the trails this afternoon. Understandably there were not many visitors, but there was a  Great Horned Owl to show the hardy few I met along the east dyke trail. The birding highlight of the day,

Eurasian Wigeon
Eurasian Wigeon

… was a Eurasian Wigeon in the house pond at the back of the gift shop. While neither my shooting position or weather were ideal, it was still good to see this winter visitor.

In other sanctuary news, the well known raptor snag got blown down this past week. Along the main path to the large covered viewing platform,

Peregrine Falcon
Peregrine Falcon

… it was a favourite roosting spot for birds of prey and for visitors to see and photograph them.

Long-tailed Duck

Late this morning I got a heads up about an unusual visitor at Reifel, so I made my way out there just after lunch.

Long-tailed Duck
Long-tailed Duck

A Long-tailed Duck was in the house pond behind the gift shop.

Long-tailed Duck
Long-tailed Duck

While normally seen on open water or at the mouth of the river, these diving ducks do occasionally find their way to inside ponds.

 

Great Horned Owl

There was a decent crowd at Reifel when I arrived to help out on the trails this afternoon. There weather was a mixed bag with sun, clouds and some light rain. Some highlights from the morning walk were Rough-legged Hawk, American Bittern, Belted Kingfisher and Varied Thrush. There was also a Great Horned Owl at the northeast corner again. As owls are always a favourite for visitors I headed there first. The owl was in a better spot for viewing today than last week.

Great Horned Owl
Great Horned Owl

I ended up spending the entire afternoon with the camera set up on the Great Horned Owl utilizing the live view feature so people could get a good close look. Needless to say this owl was a hit with everyone who came by.