Upland Sandpiper – Persistence Pays Off

Upland Sandpiper is a common breeder in central portions of its range, but it is uncommon to scarce and declining in much of the east and northeast, where they tend to be very local. I’ve had very few sightings of this sandpiper species and even less to show in photographs; however, my luck changed for the better on June 4. A few days earlier on an OFO (Ontario Field Ornithologists) field trip to Carden Alvar, I did see one in the tall grass near a herd of horses grazing in a meadow, but it was far in the distance.

Willow Flycatcher Basking in Gorgeous Light

When everything falls into place for bird photography, which doesn’t happen nearly often enough for me, I attempt to take full advantage of the situation. Today’s photos captured on June 10 highlight Willow Flycatchers. The morning sunlight was great and this Willow Flycatcher (see photos below) posed for many photos before moving on to even better locations, which provided either a better background, improved direction of light or both.

Eastern Meadowlark Carrying Insects to Nest

While looking across fields near the US (New York state)-Canadian border near Elgin, Quebec, I came across a few Eastern Meadowlarks. One in particular caught my attention as it sat on a wire with some type of bug in its bill. After grabbing a few photos, this bird flew back into the field and landed at what appeared to be its nesting area. It still had the bug in its bill so I assumed it was bringing back food to its nest.

Dickcissel Belts Out Its Song

If only all target species on my outings were this easy to photograph, bird photography would be a breeze. Upon arriving at the known breeding location of this Dickcissel, I barely had time to stop my SUV when my friends and I spotted a male Dickcissel flying past the passenger window about eye level. It perched on a nearby Mullein stalk and promptly started singing its heart out for several minutes. The direction of the early morning light was absolutely perfect and I had ample time to capture several good images.

White-eyed Vireo – Heard but Not So Easily Seen

More often than not, one is more likely to hear a White-eyed Vireo than see one. However, during spring migration at Long Point yesterday, the reverse was true when my friend, Andrew, and I stumbled upon a White-eyed Vireo at Old Cut Banding Station in Long Point, Ontario. Neither of us heard it, but Andrew caught a glimpse of something moving in the brush that made him think it might be a White-eyed Vireo. A quite search began and it wasn’t long before we gleaned some fleeting looks.