Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Mountain Bluebird, Dovkie, Black Guilemot (20151214) A trip to Cable Sable Island

It was pretty late in the year to be heading to one of Nova Scotia's birding hot spots. A big thank you goes out to Angela G for getting us togeher for the trip. There was myself and three ladies that headed down from Halifax, almost a 3 hour drive. For many here in Nova Scotia seeing the Mountain Bluebirds would be a highlight, not so much for me. But I was very surprised to hear that they were present here so far from what many would consider their home range.
There was a heavy storm on its way to the coast and the overcast skies provided very poor light, and very little of it.  After finding the MBB's we headed over to the area where Snowy owls are known to frequent. Instead of a Snowy we did see this Black Guillemot. This bird first made its appearance on the blog back in August of 2013, while we were in Newfoundland.
Our guide for the trip was Mark Dennis, and he did a fabulous job of keeping us entertained and moving toward where we might find our next sighting. In this same area we found this pair of Eiders.
Dennis and I also spotted a Merlin as it did a fly-by and we found some Song Sparrows too.
One of our other highlights was this little "auks", a Dovkie that make a shoreline appearance.
These 8 inch birds are the primary prey for many birds and mammals in the north-east of the country. As is usually the case, a new bird gets a second image.
We went back to the MBB spot to see if any other birds on note came into view. There was Snowy that had been spotted a long way out off the lookout, but it was not there when we arrived. SO I grabbed another image of the celebrities.
Dennis took us over to see if we could find some of the other late season birds, but we had no luck. Next up were the Purple Sandpipers to disappoint us, but we did find this Glaucous gull which was a total surprise.
I also grabbed this in-flight gull which is likely a Ringed-bill.
We then had to head out to try and stay ahead of the in coming storm. Overall a super trip. My first ever trip to CSI, but it won't be my last. That's often how I do it-- a little exploration allows me to put some "wild" in my life! Try it, you'll like it, Just like Mikey :)

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