Baldwin’s Birds “Down by the riverside”


A launching of a friend’s home built cedar strip canoe took me out of the garden and down to the riverside and all that it offers in the way of human water activity, and that of nature too.

The ceremony was witnessed by a pair of Osprey chicks, who watched from above in their man-made nesting platform, one of several dotted along the banks of the Rideau and visible either from the road, or on foot.

A parent bird provided the “Flypast”, as it passed by to feed its brood. A lovely black and yellow Swallowtail butterfly also gave a much smaller flight display, as it flitted down onto the ground gathering moisture from the sand.

A successful trial paddle concluded, the trip back home was taken via a road running alongside the river to one of its accessible locks with a double bridge crossing, via a lock and a “Bailey Bridge”.

After the lock crossing, a lone Osprey chick was spotted on the nesting platform, just before the other bridge, from which a good view of the marshes and rapid flowing water could be observed.

Car parked and walking back to view the marshes and the water activity, gave me sightings of the very elusive Redwings flitting amongst the reeds, and also Grackles. What sounded like a Pileated Woodpecker kept up quite a noise, as it moved through the densely wooded area of the riverside.

Unfortunately, I never spotted it at all, but whilst talking to an artist from Manotick, who had just set himself up on a close-by bench to paint the scenery, I spotted a Blue Heron right in front of us both.

I left him to get my own pictures and also spotted, just beyond the Heron, another bird wading. The view of it I got was quite distant, so I am not sure what it is! My own research seems to point me to a Wilson’s Plover, but that is supposed to be a more coastal bird, and I cannot see a black neckband under the chin, maybe one of you could help me out with that?

Our garden birds seem to have finished with their nesting activities, for now, and my nesting box area has gone back to being quite quiet, once again.

This, of course, doesn’t mean that all activity has stopped, but it just means that you have to look that much harder to see it.

Enjoy and stay safe and well.
John Baldwin


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