Birds on the Lake and Some Color

As the seasons change, some birds stay while others migrate. Some Canada Geese are migrators while others just shop around for a golf course or a park a bit farther south. The “real” Canada Geese, the ones who need passports, generally start flying south in “V”s high over head in groups of 50 or more around this time. The ones we see on our lake are not real migrators.

Our eagle pair is still in residence and although they have not produced chicks for the last two seasons, they are still in their old haunts. A tree on the east end of Stamp Act is often their sitting spot and it is quite visible from the lake.

Kingfishers are still around and often make a raucous call when they fly along the shore. They never seem to want to have their picture taken but sometimes with a long telephoto lens, you can capture a picture of them. They will migrate south when the lake freezes as they fish for their meals.

An immature bald eagle has been around the lake for awhile. It may be an eagle that was hatched here but it may just be one who happened by. Because it is not banded, you can’t tell where it came from and “our” eagles are not banded so it wouldn’t help other than to say it is not one of ours.

The double-crested cormorants are around and they are interesting birds. In many ways, the are like loons with their legs in the back of their body so that they can swim efficiently but they also can climb rocks and perch in trees. Loons, in comparison, only go on land to nest and for brief moments to mate. There are probably around 2 dozen cormorants on the lake, they spend a lot of time on Governor’s Rock.

Ring billed gulls are often seen on the lake with a couple of dozen staying through the summer months. These are non-breeding gulls, this species tends to breed in colonies, so they don’t breed here.

The loon chick that hatched in the middle of July is starting to look like a “big” loon but doesn’t have flight feathers yet. The loon chick that hatched in the Heath about a month earlier than this one is looking like it could start flying soon.

This ring billed gull looks like it is  standing on water, it is really just standing on a rock that is nearly out of water, due to low lake levels from the drought this summer.

These cormorants on Governor’s Rock are either just hanging out or working to dry their feathers. They hold their wings out to do this because they are not completely waterproof.

The blue eye of the cormorant is a quite distinctive mark!

And finally, this pepperidge tree, also called a black gum, is starting to change its colors. Swamp maples are, too, but not much else seems to be on this day of the equinox. The sun is moving south, it is still warm but there have been some cold days with temperatures in the low 30s. It will warm up before it gets really cold but three days in the 30s in September is not usual.


  1. There were two loon chicks born near Point of Pines. Both were around the Sanctuary for several weeks. There now seems to only one. Do we know what happened to the other one?

    1. It seems that one was lost. It may be a snapping turtle or an eagle. It was old enough so it should have been able to deal with some issues. It does turn out that only 30% of the second hatched chicks survive but if the nesting pair lives for 20 years, they can produce lots of chicks and help with keeping the loon population up.

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