Northern Goshawk

A change of pace in the weather while helping out at Reifel this afternoon. It was overcast with a light rain and nowhere near the number of visitors the last few nice weekends had brought out.

One bird that has eluded me since first being sighted at the beginning of the month is the Northern Goshawk. It has been seen in a few different locations in the sanctuary. I started off my walk along the east dyke trail and from there made my way to the centre dyke trail. On nearing the south end I spotted the Goshawk briefly roosting up high. It then moved off back in the direction I had just come from. I backtracked to the trail that leads to the blind off the centre dyke, relocated the Goshawk and got a good look. Unfortunately I did not bring my long lens today anticipating it to be wetter than it was. I did have my 70-300mm on the camera under my jacket and managed a distant record shot.

About 20-30 minutes later as I was starting out along the outside dyke from the southwest corner the Northern Goshawk flew into a tree right in front of me.

Northern Goshawk
Northern Goshawk

This provided for even better viewing and photo opportunity. Too bad it was such a gloomy day and for all the branches between me and the bird. Now I just have to hope it sticks around and provides further opportunities on a nicer day.

Dunlin + Harris’s Sparrow

With another Sharp-tailed Sandpiper being spotted at Reifel a couple of days ago, that was today’s destination. A break in the weather made for a nice afternoon walk. There was no sign of it on checking the southwest field where it had been sighted. From there I checked the west field, also with negative results.

Dunlin
Dunlin

The west field did, however, have lots of Dunlin and dowitchers.

Dunlin
Dunlin

I focussed in on this one Dunlin,

Dunlin
Dunlin

… while it rested and then preened itself.

Dunlin
Dunlin

While not what I was initially after, the Dunlin did provide some good photo opportunities.

A Northern Goshawk was apparently seen this morning, but I did not see it in my travels this afternoon.

Harris's Sparrow
Harris’s Sparrow

The Harris’s Sparrow was still present today in the same area along the north dyke trial. A great afternoon to be out and about before the expected rain tomorrow.

Harris’s Sparrow

It was sort of a mixed bag weather wise this afternoon while helping out at Reifel. Overcast, some rain and the occasional bright spot. In spite of this there was still a half decent number of visitors. Target bird today was a Harris’s Sparrow that was observed yesterday.

I made my way out the east dyke trail to the northeast corner where it had been spotted. This actually allows a good view along both the east and north dyke trails. Spent a little time chatting with some other birders looking for the bird, but there was just the regulars at the corner. Not long after they left I noted lots of activity along the north dyke trail closer to the tower. As I got a little closer I spotted the Harris’s Sparrow on the ground. It, along with the other birds, got flushed back into the bushes when people passed by. I stopped and set up once I got to the general area. There was a lull in people along the trail,

Harris's Sparrow
Harris’s Sparrow

… and the Harris’s Sparrow eventually made an appearance again. One just has to be patient and wait for those quiet moments along the trail,

Harris's Sparrow
Harris’s Sparrow

… as the birds will reappear. The Harris’s Sparrow was very cooperative and provided good viewing and photo opportunities. Definitely the bright spot on a mostly dreary afternoon.