PIBO Migration Summary

May 21st – 31st, 2012



Canada Warbler


Migrants were active at the Point during the first half of the summary period and crested on May 27th when sixty species were recorded, including 11 warbler spp., but things tapered off after that with the exception of a variety of shorebirds, some large groups of Cedar Waxwings, and lots of flycatchers. Six spring ‘firsts’ were noted from May 21st – 31stincluding four shorebird species. Diversity at the station ranged from 60 species on May 27th to a low of 28 on May 29th, a day of intense rain, hail, and thunderstorms. Activity in the netting area declined towards the end of the month, too – 106 birds of twenty-eight species were banded over eleven days (21st – 31st) compared to 202 birds of forty-one species from May 11th – 20th, and 452 individuals of fifty-one species from the 1st – 10th


May 21st was active, with 58 species tallied during the official ‘count’ period including two singing Acadian Flycatchers and a banded Hooded Warbler. Red-eyed Vireos and Gray-cheeked Thrushes were numerous along with seven warbler species. Six warbler species were recorded on the 22nd along with a build-up of gulls at the tip (1100) and a single Whimbrel. It remained fairly active from the 23rd – 25thand a nice variety of migrants filtered through the area including small numbers of shorebirds, Caspian and Common Tern, ‘Traill’s’ and Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, Swainson’s Thrush, and a range of warbler species.


An Acadian Flycatcher banded on May 26th was likely the same individual heard singing in the netting area since the 21st. Fifty-three species were noted on the 26th including ten warbler species and the first Semipalmated Plovers of the spring. May 27th was the busiest morning of the summary period, with sixty species documented including 6 flycatcher spp., 5 thrush spp., and 11 warbler species. An overcast day on the 28th made for a quiet time both on the census and at the banding station, and thunderstorms the following day limited coverage to a late-morning census. While few migrants were about, 3 Least Bitterns were heard in the evening during a paddle around Lake Henry at the north end of the island.


The last two days of the month were generally uneventful, although an afternoon outing on the 30thconfirmed that the pair of Prothonotary Warblers at Fish Point were still on territory, and there were lots of birds at the tip on the evening of the May 31st including 10 Semipalmated Sandpipers, 6 Semipalmated Plovers, and a Lesser Black-backed Gull among more than 1200 gulls gathered on the point.                         


PIBO’s next migration summary will be posted on June 12th.


Photo: Sumiko Onishi