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Algonquin Park Birding Report: May 18

*This report was originally posted by Ryan Rea on ONTBIRDS (May 18, 2018) and is provided here with the kind permission of the Ontario Field Ornithologists.

A few more spring migrants trickled into Algonquin Park this week and enjoyed the continuing warm weather. New spring arrivals on May 11 included Cape May Warbler, Magnolia Warbler, Rose- breasted Grosbeak, Veery and Gray Catbird. Two Solitary Sandpipers were recorded at the Old Railway Bike Trail on May 12. The first Ruby-throated Hummingbird of the year was recorded on May 14 at the Algonquin Visitor Centre. May 16 had a nice variety of new arrivals, with Olive-sided Flycatcher, Swainson’s Thrush, Scarlett Tanager Chestnut-sided Warbler and Bay-breasted Warbler all being recorded respectively. American Bittern (almost three weeks later than average) and a Virginia Rail (10 days later than average) were recorded this week as well. For details and recent images of how spring is progressing in Algonquin see:

Algonquin Park’s boreal species were also observed over the last week, including:

* Spruce Grouse: a male was seen on the Spruce Bog Boardwalk near the trail register box on May 13. Also reports of Spruce Grouse on the Mizzy Lake Trail and the Opeongo Road.

* Black-backed Woodpecker: a male and female were observed on Spruce Bog Boardwalk Trail (May 12). A female was also spotted on the margins of the Airfield on May 11.

* Gray Jay: a few reports from Spruce Bog Boardwalk Trail, Mizzy Lake Trail, and the Trailer Sanitary Station throughout the week.

* Boreal Chickadee: 3 individuals were observed on Mizzy Lake Trail on May 14.

Winter finches were still fairly widespread this week but numbers continue to decrease.

* Evening Grosbeak: Occasional birds continue to be seen (and heard) at the Visitor Centre. A pair was observed on Opeongo Road (May 10).

* Purple Finch: a few spread out at various locations

* Red Crossbill: small numbers continue to be seen along Highway 60, and the Visitor Centre continues to produce sightings.

* White-winged Crossbill: A pair was reported from Opeongo Road (May 16), and a few along Highway 60 as well.

* Pine Siskin: Still the most common winter finch by far. Flocks were recorded along Highway 60, at Opeongo Road, the Visitor Centre and various other locations.

Ryan Rea, A/Natural Heritage Education Specialist- Algonquin Park.

DIRECTIONS: Algonquin Provincial Park is three hours north of Toronto, via Highways 400, 11 and 60. Follow the signs which start in Toronto on Highway 400. From Ottawa, take Highway 17 to Renfrew, then follow Highway 60 to the Park. Kilometre markers along Highway 60 in the Park go from the West Gate (km 0) to near the East Gate (km 56). The Visitor Centre exhibits, bookstore and restaurant at km 43 will be open daily (9 am to 5 pm) until June 15. Get your park permit and Information Guide (with a map of birding locations mentioned above) at the East Gate, West Gate or Visitor Centre. Locations are also described at:

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The Muskoka Bird Board is a place to share reports of birds and other nature sightings in Muskoka and surrounding areas. You may also post a question about birds or birding in general. You don't have to include an email address in your post. Remember to include the location of your sightings - even the nearest town or major crossroads would be fine. See the Posting Guidelines for more information and helpful tips about using the Muskoka Bird Board.

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