Bondi Resort Blog

Come on into our Blog for a look at the wonderful world we've got to share! With over 240 hectares (600 acres) of wilderness woodlands surrounding the resort, just ten minutes from Algonquin Park, we feature over 400 metres (1200’) of waterfront and beach; boat rentals; summer hiking trails winding through fields and woods; 20 km. of groomed cross country ski trails and snowshoeing in winter; access to nearby snowmobile trails for sledders, and a toboggan hill for the young at heart.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Migration and Rare Birds

The first huge flock of Canada geese overflew us this morning, heading south.

There is magic in watching these massive formations, the long straggling V's stretching across the sky. 

Once upon a time, not many years ago, we were all delighted to see those formations, to hear the honking of the geese overhead. They brought the seasons, escorting Spring north as we raked and planted, and rolling up the Autumn season as we put gardens to bed for the year.

Something happened, in the last little while.  Suddenly there were a lot of geese who no longer felt the need to join those flights and migrate. They came as far as here, and stopped.  Suddenly, we had geese nesting on the lake. Goslings dabbling along the shorelines.  Flocks hanging out (or trying to... we have our ways) on the lawns.

And this, to be frank is an issue.  They are beautiful birds... just not when they are occupying the beachfront area.  Taffy is a secret weapon -- seems they think she is some sort of ferocious goose-eating fox.

A friend from Manitoba, who does a lot of science research up north in Nunavut on the traditional summering grounds of the Canada geese has her own theory. She tells me that a dramatic increase in the population of Snow geese has pushed the Canadas south. Snow geese graze very closely, and don't like to share, and when the Canada geese arrive, there is too much competition for the available food. Not being as dumb as they might at first look, they re-locate.

All the same, we still love to see those great flights -- correctly termed Skeins of geese across the autumn skies.   This formation allows the geese to be 80% more efficient than if they were flying solo.

It is the migration season.  Last week, we had guests here from Ireland. One of them is a retired ornithologist, so one would never argue with him in matters pertaining to birds. They were delighted to spot one of our resident pileated woodpeckers. They've been hard at work cleaning up the cherry trees.

He also spotted a species passing overhead that is definitely a Rare Bird up here.  A Sandhill Crane overflew us.

I was taken aback -- we are just beyond the normal range of these birds, so they are most unusual.  "Not a heron?" I asked, pushing my luck, and go the kind of look one would expect from an expert.

After all this is a very identifiable bird, with a unique raspy call...

We do get unusual birds during the migration season, being pushed a little away from their flightways by weather and circumstance.  That one, however, that was an exciting sighting!

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