Sunday, October 28, 2012

More Snow Geese

There are hundreds of thousands of Snow Geese around here ... or there was as of this past Friday.  We've since got some snow, and Snow Geese really don't care for snow.

That same day, huge flocks of Snows were heading south-east all day long.  I've mentioned before that our vehicle license plates say "Land of Living Skies".  It was one of those days.

Spectacular sight.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Fiery Sunrise

The Autumn is absolutely the best time for beautiful, colourful sunrises and sunsets.

Last night I was too lazy (and too late) to walk down to the valley to catch the sunset.  This morning, however, the sunrise was just as seen from my house.



Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Whooping Cranes

This past Sunday, I met my birding buddy & friend, Guy Wapple at Muskiki Lake for some Whooping Crane (Grus americana) viewing.

We were fortunate in that 4 of the reported 16-17 Whoopers were relatively close to the road into the area.  This is all private land; the farmers are indulgent of birders coming to look.  We stay on the road and try not to bother these fantastically beautiful and very endangered birds.

In total, we counted 16 adults and 1 juvenile.  The rest of the flock were farther away grazing around a small slough - good viewing with scope or bins, but too far for my camera lens.  Sad that there was only one young bird in this group.

These Whoopers are part of the only wild, self-sustaining flock that summers & breeds in Wood Buffalo National Park, which spans the Northern Alberta and North West Territories border.  Muskiki Lake is in South-Central Saskatchewan, about an hour's drive east of Saskatoon.  Depending on the weather, these birds might stay around the area for another week or so.  They will winter at Aransas NWR in Texas.

This day we were thrilled to watch the big white birds walk and graze; a few hopped and danced a little bit.  We also heard the 'whoops' and watched them in flight.  

Saskatchewan Birding at its Finest.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Sandhill Cranes at Last Mountain Lake

About a week ago I went to Last Mountain Lake in South-Central Saskatchewan.  

The land surrounding the shallow north end of this long, glacial lake is a bird/wildlife sanctuary.  In fact, it is Canada's first federal wildlife reserve, created in 1887. 

Thousands and thousands of Sandhill Cranes congregate here in the Fall (sometimes Whooping Cranes as well).