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Early August and birds on the move

August 13, 2013

I added up my year totals and realized that I had missed adding Cedar Waxwing to the list, given me 81 species from the apartment and balcony so far this year.  And, I don’t think it is over.   The 84 total from 2012 is easily attainable.   But it is over for the Andorinhas (Purple Martin) in Gatineau this year.  August 8 was the last day I heard their flight calls from our balcony.  Since then there has been no sign of them.  I even ran past their apartment which was quiet and empty.  So they have left their cosy apartment to meet up with many more of their kind in large post breeding, pre-migration roosts somewhere, maybe along Lake Ontario or the St. Lawrence.   We are looking forward to seeing those beloved Andorinhas in Campinas Brazil later this year.

Young Ruby-throated Hummingbird visits the feeder on August 10

Young Ruby-throated Hummingbird visits the feeder on August 10

Otherwise, some birds that we had observed in the spring but not seen since, have returned, even if just to say hello and goodbye.   About 10 days ago, while enjoying the inexplicable antics of the entertaining families of Chickadees, a Yellow Warbler popped out of the Japanese Elm foliage right in front of our dinner table!   Then, three days ago, Cris called me a work to tell me that Beija-flor (hummingbird) has returned.  In fact it has stayed and appears to be enjoying both our feeder with fresh 4:1 water – sugar solution, and the multitude of reddish flowers on the balcony including scarlet runner beans, geraniums and nasturtiums.

On Sunday, during breakfast, the latest arrival in the Elm was a pretty female American Redstart.    Having breakfast and supper on the balcony is really making a difference and confirming that birds are moving around and that they turn up in unexpected places.  We just need to be watching or listening when they come by.

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