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Keep the binoculars handy as Ron blogs about bird sightings in the Lake Simcoe area.

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Ron Fleming blog: In memory of Samwise

Ron Fleming blog: In memory of Samwise

The first day of my March Break was March 8, so I ushered it in by driving the roads west and north of Newmarket in search of local birds. 

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August at the Lake

merlin

There's something bittersweet about the month of August. The "Au" in its name foreshadows the Autumn ahead while cool evening winds add another reminder that summer will soon pass.

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Swift things are beautiful

Swift things are beautiful

Chimneys suit these cigar-shaped birds; modern venting does not.

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Christmas gifts for birders

An abbreviated version of this article appears in the November-December 2012 issue of Lake Simcoe Living Magazine.

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March birds: Part 2

The flooded fields on the west side of Bathurst St. N. in Holland Landing had 70+ TUNDRA SWANS and 10 SNOW GEESE at 7:45 this Friday morning. Also present were four N. SHOVELERS (4), approx. 40 N. PINTAIL, and three GREEN-WINGED TEAL. A NORTHERN FLICKER was active along the Dufferin Street roadside north of Hwy. 9 (and south of Miller Sdrd.) when I was there around 8:30. I did not find much else in "the marsh" but there was a male AMERICAN KESTREL along Tornado Drive which I believe is the same one observed several times throughout the winter.

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March birds

The first two weeks of March in York Region (north of Toronto/ south of Lake Simcoe) have been busy ornithologically. There are still some winter visitors lingering while an influx of spring arrivals has steadily swelled the bird population.

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Christmas Bird Count

Citizen science for Christmas

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This year's awesome Birdathon!

During the week leading up to May 21, 2011, an American preacher began proclaiming that the “End is Nigh.” According to him, the Judgment Day was imminent. May 21 would be mankind’s last day on earth. The apocalypse, it seemed, was going to coincide with our annual Baille Birdathon.

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Chores vs birds — birds win!

Having resigned myself to domestic chore-doing on Saturday, I tried not to think about birds. But when I turned my lawnmower off, I heard the unmistakable sound of a Blackpoll Warbler singing from a tree across the street from me!  Luckily, I know the lady who lives there so got her permission to stand on the lawn and gawk up at her maple tree.  Sure enough, in all its black-capped glory, there it was in the middle of suburbia, doing its late-May migration thing.

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Baillie Birdathon

One of the most enjoyable aspects of spring for me is being part of the Baillie Birdathon.  I have participated in this environmental fundraiser for over 20 years, the past 10 as part of a four-man team called "The Warbler Hunters".

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