Migration Summary for the Period May 6th – 12th


Pelee Island Bird Observatory



It was a busy week for both birds and birders as Pelee Island celebrated it’s 8th annual SpringSong Festival and ‘green’ bird race. Joseph Boyden highlighted the weekend event and Fred Bodsworth returned for a second year as our guest birder. Dinner at the Pelee Island Winery on Saturday was capped off with a reading by Joseph from his captivating novels – Three Day Road and Through Black Spruce. The evening was enjoyed by one and all.       


The race for the Botham Cup was also a smashing success. Eleven teams undertook the grueling 24-hour marathon and, once again, the consummate field-craft and daring-do of the island’s perennial favourites – the Finch and Chips – reigned supreme. A total of 155 species was recorded by all the teams and everyone had a great time.   


There were quite a few migrants documented at Fish Point during the summary period and new arrivals continued to appear on a daily basis including spring ‘firsts’ for Willet and Peregrine Falcon, along with eight other species. Other noteworthy sightings at the beginning of the week included White-eyed Vireo on the 7th and 3 Sandhill Cranes and a Clay-colored Sparrow observed by PIBO staff on the afternoon of the 8th.


On the second day of the bird race a number of unusual species were noted by birders on the island including a Kirtland’s Warbler discovered and videoed along the west shore and a King Rail heard and seen on Stone Road. Sixteen warbler species were recorded by PIBO staff during the morning coverage period on May 10th, including a banded Yellow-breasted Chat, along with increased numbers of flycatchers, vireos and thrushes.


Next week’s summary will be posted on May 21st.


Photo: Sumiko Onishi