NATURE MONCTON INFORMATION LINE, July 22, 2021 (Thursday)
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Edited by: Nelson Poirier firstname.lastname@example.org
Transcript by: Brian Stone email@example.com
Info Line # 506-384-6397 (384-NEWS)
** Clifford Twist got some photos of the FORK-TAILED FLYCATCHER on Monday that showed a yellow stripe on the crown that had not been seen on other photographs. A net search says that males sometimes show a yellow crown stripe and suggests that it is seldom seen. Clifford saw what appears to be a female BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD that was threatening and eventually chased the flycatcher to make one wonder if this stripe could appear when it is intimidated. They are some very interesting documentary photos.
** Don Lutes got a brief video of a FISHER at Theresa McCready’s Young’s Cove property last summer to show nicely the bushy tail and un-humped body when travelling that we saw in the River Otter video that was on the last few editions. Take a look at the action in the attached video. The Fisher is also an arboreal animal, so the placement is right on.
** Georges Brun got a photo of a RING-BILLED GULL struggling with a BROWN BULLHEAD FISH as prey at the mouth of Hall’s Creek. This is not only a large fish for this gull but is adorned with many very sharp spines. Normally this fish would be found in more brackish water of less saline content.
** Jane Leblanc sends a photo of a WILLET she got while doing a shorebird survey with Jim Wilson in West Quaco, just outside of St. Martins. It was with a duo of SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPERS. The documentary flight photos show the flag flash of white on the wing when this drab bird takes flight. Jane also got a photo of a SANDERLING at the same beach as the Willet.
** Janet Kempster and Brian Stone made a run to check the site for the Fork-tailed Flycatcher on Tuesday, but had no luck. However they got consolation prises at the Memramcook lagoons. An AMERICAN KESTREL family was flying about and perching on fences and wires to give some great photo ops. They found BARN SWALLOWS nesting in a nest area waiting to be fed and a short distance away 6 CLIFF SWALLOW nests under the eaves of a house. Five nests seemed empty, but a nestling was seen in one but no further photos as the parents seemed agitated. They also got a male RUDDY DUCK at one of the lagoons.
** On the Tuesday Nature Moncton outing unfortunately Brian’s camera had to stay in a plastic bag most of the time due to showers but did get a photo of a PINE CONE GALL on a willow (where it always occurs) and also a LEAFCUTTER BEE. The young female HOODED MERGANSER was still present at the pond and Brian did manage a shot of it resting between showers.
**Andrew Darcy leaves a report on Tuesday night’s Nature Moncton outing and photos:
“A few die-hard naturalists did manage to make it out for the weekly Nature Moncton outing this week. We were lucky enough to dodge the rainstorms for the most part and only got slightly wet. The birds and insects were fairly inactive due to the rain, but we did manage to spot a lone juvenile HOODED MERGANSER amongst a large group of female MALLARD DUCKS, looking a little left out I must admit. On the entomology side of things, we found a great example of WILLOW PINECONE GALL MIDGE. We also heard AMERICAN GOLDFINCH, SONG SPARROW, and PURPLE FINCH. Mapleton Park did however host some interesting botanical observations, including several new species for me and even a lifer for Gordon. This being a flower called SNEEZEWORT, which is an introduced perennial from Europe that has naturalized in scattered places across North America. Other finds included VIRGIN'S BOWER (a native species in the Clematis family), FRINGED LOOSESTRIFE, ROADSIDE AGRIMONY, COMMON HEMP-NETTLE, LINDLEY'S ASTER, WHITE AND YELLOW SWEETCLOVER, WORMSEED WALLFLOWER, SPOTTED LADY'S THUMB, PALE SMARTWEED, and FLAT-TOP WHITE ASTER. At the end of the hike a MARITIME GARTER SNAKE was also spotted on the trail by part of the group (not me haha). The snake was very cooperative for photos and fairly inactive, most likely due to the lack of sun. The Maritime sub-species is quite handsome indeed, compared to the usual Common Garter Snake I am used to seeing back in Ontario.”