Wednesday, 8 April 2020

April 8 2020

NATURE MONCTON INFORMATION LINE, April 08, 2020 (Wednesday)

To view the photos mentioned in this edition go to http://nminfoline.blogspot.ca .

To respond by e-mail, please address your message to the information line editor,  nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com .

Please advise the editor at nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com  if any errors are noted in wording or photo labelling. Note that corrections, deletions, or delayed additions may not always appear on the Info Line and email transcript but will always appear on the BlogSpot. For this reason, it is recommended that those wishing to look at historical records use the BlogSpot rather than the email transcript. The BlogSpot can always be accessed from the website.


 For more information on Nature Moncton, check the website at
www.naturemoncton.com .

Edited by: Nelson Poirier nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com
Transcript by: Brian Stone bjpstone@gmail.com
Info Line # 506-384-6397 (384-NEWS)


** GART Bishop mentioned finding CROWBERRY in bloom in the Cape Spenser, Saint John area recently. Gart took some documentary cell phone photos that are attached. Gart points out that this is a male plant that he has taken the photos of. Gart also points out that Crowberry is an evergreen member of the Heather family that is usually found along the coast as a dense ground cover. It does indeed bloom in April but its juicy, black fruit is not ripe until August. The sexes are on different plants. The small blooms are only 2 mm. and are nestled down in the needle-like leaves to be easily overlooked.

** Richard Blacquiere has been watching the rapidly growing waterfowl assemblage at the Hampton Lagoon. A pleasant surprise present on Tuesday was a male RUDDY DUCK [Érismature rousse]. Distance made the photo documentary but positive. That wedgewood blue bill of the spring male is striking!

** Anita and David Cannon spent much of the late afternoon on Tuesday watching a male PILEATED WOODPECKER [Grand pic] and were nothing short of impressed by how much of a tree one bird could decimate in a few hours. The attached photos show the few hour effort. I suspect that woodpecker did not retire hungry Tuesday evening.

Dave Christie comments he had his first male BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD appear to accept his yard ground offerings on Tuesday morning in the company of COMMON GRACKLES and a RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD. A bit later as he was watching the bay from his home, a male NORTERN HARRIER perched atop a conifer tree to briefly survey the area.

** Daryl Doucet and Gail Mills visited the Cassie Cape wharf on Tuesday to get a nice photograph of several male BLACK SCOTERS [Macreuse noire] with one female with them. COMMON EIDERS [Eider à duvet] were also there as well as a RING-BILLED GULL [Goéland à bec cerclé] watching over things.

** Pat Gibbs has a regular male RING-NECKED PHEASANT [Faisan de Colchide] patron and now lots of COMMON GRACKLES [Quiscale bronzé] have arrived to the pheasant’s disgust. It took after one and caught it. She was not sure of the outcome, but found a chunk of black feathers later so the pheasant apparently got the point across. Pat also got a pleasant MOURNING DOVE [Tourterelle triste] photo as well as one of a SONG SPARROW [Bruant chanteur] chiming from the top of a Cedar tree.

** Bob Blake comments that they usually has about 5 resident EASTERN CHIPMUNKS [Suisse] during the summer. The first one appeared out of winter torpor on Monday.

** Brian Stone ventured cautiously out into his driveway from his isolation on Tuesday evening to await the arrival of the April full Moon which is the largest and brightest of the year. As he waited for the Moon to clear the low cloud cover he turned his camera to the opposite side of the sky to capture a wide angle view displaying the position of the bright planet Venus to demonstrate its height above the horizon. Back on the other side of the sky as the Moon began to climb above the clouds a neighbor decided to celebrate by adding his own light show to the natural one unfolding. Two for the price of one! Brian also included a picture of his CROCUS just coming into bloom, a bit behind some others in town.

** A portion of the Little Southwest Miramichi River in front of our camp is open and I was surprised to see an adult BALD EAGLE [Pygargue à tête blanche] at the edge of the ice looking into the water for some time. It must have had a reason to be doing so but it would seem like an unlikely spot to be able to capture anything.
On Wednesday morning, a pair of BLACK DUCKS was sitting in the same spot, no doubt with other things in mind. This waterfowl species is one of the few where genders are very similar except the yellow bill of the male and greenish bill of the female.   


Nelson Poirier,
Nature Moncton





RUDDY DUCK (MALE). APRIL 7, 2020. RICHARD BLACQUIERE

CROWBERRY IN BLOOM. APRIL 6, 2020.  GART BISHOP

CROWBERRY IN BLOOM. APRIL 6, 2020.  GART BISHOP

BLACK SCOTER. APRIL 7, 2020. GAIL MILLS

COMMON EIDER (ADULT MALES). APRIL 7, 2020. GAIL MILLS

CROCUS. APRIL 07, 2020. BRIAN STONE

PILEATED WOODPECKER (MALE). APRIL 7, 2020. DAVID CANNON

PILEATED WOODPECKER. APRIL 7, 2020. DAVID CANNON

BALD EAGLE.APRIL 7, 2020.  NELSON POIRIER

BALD EAGLE.APRIL 7, 2020.  NELSON POIRIER

BLACK DUCKS (PAIR). APRIL 8, 2020.  NELSON POIRIER

VENUS. APRIL 07, 2020. BRIAN STONE

FULL 
MOON AND FIREWORKS. APRIL 07, 2020. BRIAN STONE

FULL MOON. APRIL 07, 2020. BRIAN STONE 

FULL MOON. APRIL 07, 2020. BRIAN STONE 

FULL MOON. APRIL 07, 2020. BRIAN STONE 

RING-BILLED GULL. APRIL 7, 2020. GAIL MILLS

Tuesday, 7 April 2020

April 7, 2020


NATURE MONCTON INFORMATION LINE, April 7, 2020 (Tuesday)

To view the photos mentioned in this edition go to http://nminfoline.blogspot.ca .

To respond by e-mail, please address your message to the information line editor,  nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com .

Please advise the editor at nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com  if any errors are noted in wording or photo labelling. Note that corrections, deletions, or delayed additions may not always appear on the Info Line and email transcript but will always appear on the BlogSpot. For this reason, it is recommended that those wishing to look at historical records use the BlogSpot rather than the email transcript. The BlogSpot can always be accessed from the website.


 For more information on Nature Moncton, check the website at
www.naturemoncton.com .

Edited by: Nelson Poirier nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com
Transcript by: david.cannon@rogers.com
Info Line # 506-384-6397 (384-NEWS)


**  Ron Steeves started his faithful watch of migration in the New Horton and Cape Enrage area Monday. The forecast called for not much wind, but that sure was not the case for Ron, as the winds at that site were ferocious. Ron arrived at Cape Enrage at 7:45 a.m. to find 9 GREAT CORMORANTS [Grand Cormorant] were trying to round the point. The full moon tide was just moving in, with the strong wind pushing it upstream. Waterside Marsh was so completely flooded that it even pushed the BLACK DUCKS [Canard noir] out of the marsh. The rough seas made it difficult to do accurate counts. The first flocks that went by that were close enough were WHITE-WINGED SCOTERS [Macreuse brune], that totalled approximately 50 in each flock. It seemed like LONG-TAILED DUCK [Harelde kakawi] day!  Ron does not usually see many of this species at that site, but several small flocks passed by, with approximately 125 that did set down close to the point, with a total count of 205 Long-tailed Ducks.
Ron’s Scoter count was 375 (including the White-winged Scoters just mentioned), with a mixture of BLACK SCOTERS [Macreuse noire] and SURF SCOTERS [Macreuse à front blanc]. Approximately 180 COMMON EIDER [Eider à duvet] were counted. Ron considered this very, very low numbers, with several species not seen, such as Double-crested Cormorants, Canada Geese, Red-throated Loons, Common Loons, and Ron comments he often sees Brant off of the point.
The New Horton’s church site was a bust, with the only possible migrants being 3 TURKEY VULTURES [Urubu à tête rouge] rocketing past in the high winds. The resident NORTHERN HARRIERS [Busard des marais] and BALD EAGLES [Pygargue à tête blanche] were present near the church. The species count for the day near that area was 43.


** Daryl Doucet had his first MALE BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD [Vacher à tête brune] arrive to his Moncton feeder yard Monday. It is expected for the first Brown-headed Cowbirds to arrive after the other Blackbirds first arrive, and the males usually arrive ahead of the females. Daryl also reports that his sister in Berry Mills had an albinistic AMERICAN ROBIN [Merle d'Amérique] arrive to her yard that looked very similar to the one Brian and Annette Stone photographed in the Gorge Road area recently, so it just may have been the same bird.
Daryl also shared a landscape photo from a blueberry field, showing Collier Mountain, Albert County, looking north, towards Zackie and Sweet Mountains.

Brian Coyle continues to enjoy his flock of Cedar Waxwings around his home cleaning up the Highbush Cranberry remnants but was surprised to see them gleaning Bittersweet Nightshade berries in a ditch by his home. This berry has some toxicity to mammals but suspect not to birds as have had reports of other bird species foraging on this berry as well.

** The moon was 98% full on Monday Night and Brian Stone took the opportunity to get a skyscape photo of it and a full-screen view, in case of cloud cover on Tuesday night when it is scheduled to be 100% full. In the full-screen view, you can see the many craters that Galileo saw in 1610 thinking they were seas and named them. The incredible advances in technology since Galileo viewed the moon with his home-made primitive equipment!

** Jane LeBlanc got a photo of a MALE RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD [Carouge à épaulettes] that would appear to just be going into breeding plumage.

** We were at our Little Southwest Miramichi camp last evening and at least two NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWLS were actively tooting from very different directions. There actually seemed like more but one may have been moving. We usually only hear one each spring. I wonder if this species may be having a good year.

Nelson Poirier,
Nature Moncton





BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD (MALE). APRIL 6. DARYL DOUCET

CEDAR WAXWING. APRIL 6, 2020.  BRIAN COYLE

CEDAR WAXWINGS. APRIL 6, 2020.  BRIAN COYLE

MOON. APRIL 06, 2020.. BRIAN STONE

MOON. APRIL 06, 2020.. BRIAN STONE

RED WINGED BLACKBIRD. APR. 5, 2020. JANE LEBLANC

COLLIER MOUNTAIN LOOKING NORTH TO ZACKIE AND SWEET MOUNTAINS. APRIL 6, 2020. DARYL DOUCET

Monday, 6 April 2020

April 6 2020

NATURE MONCTON INFORMATION LINE, April 6, 2020 (Monday)

To view the photos mentioned in this edition go to http://nminfoline.blogspot.ca

To respond by e-mail, address your message to the information line editor, nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com

Please advise the editor if any errors are noted in wording or photo labelling. Note that corrections, deletions, or delayed additions may not always appear on the Info Line and email transcript but will always appear on the BlogSpot. For this reason, it is recommended that those wishing to look at historical records use the BlogSpot rather than the email transcript. The BlogSpot can always be accessed from the website.

For more information on Nature Moncton, check the website at www.naturemoncton.com .

Edited by: Nelson Poirier nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com
Transcript by: David Christie maryspt@mac.com
Info Line # 506-384-6397 (384-NEWS)                                                                                 


** Louise Nichols had an excellent day checking wharves along the coast. Cocagne Bridge netted 14 waterfowl species, including both expected goldeneyes, COMMON GOLDENEYE [Garrot à oeil d’or] and BARROW’S GOLDENEYE [Garrot d’Islande], both expected mergansers, (COMMON MERGANSER [Grand Harle] and RED-BREASTED MERGANSER [Harle huppé]), BUFFLEHEAD [Petit Garrot], BLACK SCOTER [Macreuse à bec jaune] and SURF SCOTER [Macreuse à front blanc], NORTHERN PINTAIL [Canard pilet], RING-NECKED DUCK [Fuligule à collier], GREATER SCAUP [Fuligule milouinan] and other expected regulars. Some were close enough in the calm sea to get very nice photographs and a few lively videos. Check out the action at the attached links. The beautiful vocalization of the Black Scoter can be heard in both videos, even in the background of the lively Surf Scoter.







** Mac Wilmot has 2 GREAT HORNED OWLS [Grand-duc d’Amérique] vocalizing behind his house in Lower Coverdale, almost every evening and sporadically through the night. They start to call well before dark. Sometimes in the daytime the CROWS [Corneille d’Amérique] and RAVENS [Grand Corbeau] lead them to their roost with their angry mob harassment. The calls are distinctly different in tone; apparently the male’s voice is deeper.  Mac mentioned in an earlier post that the number of GRAY SQUIRRELS [Écureuil gris] present in his area is much more than usually expected. One has to wonder if this is not the attraction in Lower Coverdale and Riverview. Great Horned Owls like the SNOWSHOE HARE [Lièvre d’Amérique] as prey, but I’m not sure of the status of the Snowshoe Hare population at the moment.


** Richard Blacquiere reports all 3 ponds at the Hampton Lagoon are now ice free. Green-winged teal have returned with the first 2 on Sunday. They were approximately 150 m away and Richard got documentary photos. A curiosity is one which shows features that suggest it is a hybrid of the 2 subspecies. It has a bold vertical stripe on the breast, but also a noticeable horizontal stripe. It seems to have a facial pattern more in line with a Eurasian. It would be very interesting to know where it was hatched!

** Doreen Rossiter had her first arrival of two male BROWN-HEADED COWBIRDS [Vacher à tête brune], among a large flock of blackbirds and also a first visit from a female RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD [Carouge à épaulettes], as well as first-year male Red-winged Blackbirds on Sunday to her Alma yard. Her first male NORTHERN FLICKER [Pic flamboyant] dropped in on April 2nd. The first large flock of AMERICAN ROBINS [Merle d’Amérique] touched down on Sunday, and AMERICAN WOODCOCK [Bécasse d’Amérique] are being heard near her Alma home in the evenings.
 Doreen comments “isn’t it wonderful that birds and animals know nothing about COVID-19 and closed borders, and isn’t it wonderful that we can just get out and enjoy nature and its calming effect.”


** In this period of isolation, yard birds are really getting noticed. Brian Coyle has a flock of 20 CEDAR WAXWINGS [Jaseur d’Amérique] that are staying and foraging on Highbush Cranberry [Viorne d’amérique], which is often a clinging fruit of last resort, but they seem to enjoy it. Brian also got a photo of a female PURPLE FINCH [Roselin pourpré], showing the white supercilium above the eye nicely. He is also enjoying the SONG SPARROWS [Bruant chanteur] that seem to have arrived in good numbers now and are singing heartily. A close-up mugshot of a HAIRY WOODPECKER [Pic chevelu] shows nice detail.

** Hay Island roads are opening up. Aldo Dorio paid a visit on Sunday to get a photo of a pair of COMMON MERGANSERS [Grand Harle]. All three mergansers can potentially occur at this site. The white throat of the female, bordered in brown shows nicely, in contrast with the female RED-BREASTED MERGANSER [Harle huppé] with a white throat and neck area.


** The SEALS [phoques] on the ice floes in the area north of St-Thomas continue to be present. Jean-Paul LeBlanc counted 14 on one floe on Saturday. Unfortunately, photos continue to be distant, but showing the increased number of animals. Jean-Paul got a video that the breeze made quite shaky but shows some of the action. Check it out at the attached link.





** Anna Tucker enjoyed lots of action in the sun outside at Church Court on Sunday. She got a nice photo of a pair of HOUSE FINCH [Roselin familier], but lots of other birds were active. A few CROCUS that had not been open for the last three days were smiling with the sun out.



Nelson Poirier,
Nature Moncton


BLACK SCOTERS. APRIL 5, 2020. LOUISE NICHOLS

SURF SCOTER (MALE). APRIL 5, 2020. LOUISE NICHOLS

RED-BREASTED MERGANSER (MALE). APRIL 5, 2020. LOUISE NICHOLS
RED-BREASTED MERGANSERS. APRIL 5, 2020. LOUISE NICHOLS

NORTHERN PINTAIL AND GREEN-WINGED TEAL (FOREGROUND). APRIL 5, 2020. LOUISE NICHOLS

COMMON MERGANSER (PAIR). APRIL 5, 2020. ALDO DORIO
GREEN-WINGED TEAL. APRIL 5, 2020. RICHARD BLACQUIERE

GREEN-WINGED TEAL. APRIL 5, 2020. RICHARD BLACQUIERE

HOUSE FINCH (PAIR). APRIL 5 2020. ANNA TUCKER

HAIRY WOODPECKER. APRIL 5, 2020. BRIAN COYLE

CEDAR WAXWING. APRIL 5, 2020. BRIAN COYLE

SEALS. APRIL 4, 2020.,  JEAN-PAUL LeBLANC

SEALS. APRIL 4, 2020.,  JEAN-PAUL LeBLANC

SEALS. APRIL 4, 2020.,  JEAN-PAUL LeBLANC

SONG SPARROW. APRIL 5, 2020. BRIAN COYLE

PURPLE FINCH (FEMALE). MARCH 5, 2020. BRIAN COYLE

Sunday, 5 April 2020

April 5 2020

 NATURE MONCTON INFORMATION LINE, April 5, 2020 (Sunday)

To view the photos mentioned in this edition go to http://nminfoline.blogspot.ca

To respond by e-mail, address your message to the information line editor, nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com

Please advise the editor if any errors are noted in wording or photo labelling. Note that corrections, deletions, or delayed additions may not always appear on the Info Line and email transcript but will always appear on the BlogSpot. For this reason, it is recommended that those wishing to look at historical records use the BlogSpot rather than the email transcript. The BlogSpot can always be accessed from the website.

For more information on Nature Moncton, check the website at www.naturemoncton.com

Edited by: Nelson Poirier nelsonpoirier435@gmail.com
Transcript by: David Christie maryspt@mac.com
Info Line # 506-384-6397 (384-NEWS)


** It’s that time of year when the SNOWSHOE HARE [Lievre d’Amérique] and the WEASELS [Belettes] start to make the dramatic pelage change from winter white to summer brown to provide them with the camouflage from predators for the hare to camouflage from potential prey for the weasels. Jim Saunders got an excellent photo of a Snowshoe Hare in the process of making that transition. It’s a real balancing act. If the change comes on too early their camouflage is not effective. Jim’s photo shows the hare in transition, maybe a bit early for its surroundings. However, it’s the day length that triggers the change, so here it comes ready or not.


** The KILLDEER [Pluvier kildir] are arriving nicely. Jane LeBlanc saw one at St. Martins beach on Saturday morning, the first that she has seen this year. A large section of kelp was washed up on the shore after the recent high winds. Note the holdfast that normally holds this underwater forest in place on the rocky substrate which has let go.

Jane also comments that TURKEY VULTURES [Urubu à tête rouge] are now in significant numbers, flying about St. Martins. Her photo nicely captured that pale portion of the primary and secondary wing feathers that is obvious on a Turkey Vulture in flight.


** Brian Coyle got some photos of WHITE-TAILED DEER [Cerf de Virginie] grazing in fields at Pré-d’en-Haut recently. They are looking in excellent flesh, having enjoyed a good winter in southeastern New Brunswick. No sign of pelage shedding yet to take on their chestnut-coloured summer garb.

Brian also had a visit from a CEDAR WAXWING [Jaseur d’Amérique] in his yard on Friday morning, likely an overwintering bird as those that migrate tend to come back later.


** Mike Plourde shares a visitor that he captured with his trail camera, a BOBCAT [Lynx roux] at Indian Mountain, recently. It shows nicely the bi-coloured tip of the bob-tail, black on top, white under. It also shows the relatively small footpads of the Bobcat, compared to what a Lynx [Lynx du Canada] would have. Take a look at the action at the attached link.


** Daryl Doucet spotted the SNOW GEESE [Oie des neiges] that seem to be slowly swelling in numbers in the fields on either side of the Petitcodiac River, seen from the Turtle Creek Church area and across the river from the Salisbury Road side. Daryl spotted 3 on Saturday from the Salisbury Road. He alerted me and I went out to the spot and was able to walk down a field using hay bales as cover to get a bit closer. There were 5 Snow Geese in a flock of approximately 300 CANADA GEESE [Bernache du Canada]. The 5 really kept close together within the flock. I also saw them take flight and again the 5 stuck very close together.



Nelson Poirier,
Nature Moncton


SNOWSHOE HARE (IN TRANSITION). APRIL 4, 2020. JIM SAUNDERS

KILLDEER. APR. 4, 2020. JANE LEBLANC

KILLDEER. APR. 4, 2020. JANE LEBLANC
WHITE-TAILED DEER. APRIL 3, 2020. BRIAN COYLE


WHITE-TAILED DEER. APRIL 3, 2020. BRIAN COYLE

SNOW GEESE AND CANADA GEESE. APRIL 4, 2020. DARYL DOUCET

SNOW GEESE AND CANADA GEESE. APRIL 4, 2020. NELSON POIRIER 

SNOW GEESE AND CANADA GEESE. APRIL 4, 2020. NELSON POIRIER 

TURKEY VULTURE. APR. 3, 2020. JANE LEBLANC

KELP. APR. 4, 2020. JANE LEBLANC