Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Brier Island Highlights - May 2016

2016 turned out to be a good year for our annual May birding trip to Brier Island. I think we recorded the largest number of species this year as well as some interesting sightings including one lifer for me. More on that later.  There were the expected birds as well and some regulars that failed to show.
 One of the regulars being Gray Catbird, this was the first time I've witnessed them eating spruce buds. One not so regular is the Bobolink which we found in numbers including one group of three males and one female and this lone male which could have been part of that group.

 There was a variety of Vireos to be found including this Yellow-throated Vireo which was probably my favourite bird of the trip. Although I've seen them in the past this was the first one for me in many years.

 There were a few Blue-Headed Vireos which I haven't had much luck photographing in the past and at least one Warbling Vireo which I had seen only once before - two years ago on Brier.

Blue-headed Vireo
Warbling Vireo
 This year was especially good for warblers, I'm just a little disappointed I wasn't able to get better photos of some of the more uncommon ones.
Magnolia Warbler

Northern Parula

Black-throated Green Warbler

Rounding things out here are a few more of the trip highlights. Clockwise from bottom left. Baltimore Oriole (always many to be found), Bank Swallow, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Baybreasted Warbler, Red-necked Phalarope and the lifer for me - Worm-eating Warbler. Luckily we all got to see that bird. May 16-18.

Thanks to Mark, Gretchen, Carmen and Lucy for all the good food and great company. Looking forward to doing it all again in 2017.


Heather S said...

Always fantastic photos from Brier Island! I'm always impressed by wildlife photography, it takes so much patience (and a little bit of luck too, I'm sure).

Alix said...

Russel, do you mind sharing the dates for the Yellow-throated Vireo,
Worm-eating Warbler, Northern Rough-winged Swallow and Warbling Vireo? For Nova Scotia Bird Society records.


Russel Crosby said...

Thanks for the comment Heather. Yes, there is usually more than a little bit of luck involved and some patience doesn't hurt.

Sure Alix. The Rough-winged Swallow was on May 16, both vireos on the 17 and the Worm-eating Warbler on the 18th. I know Mark was probably in touch with Ian M. but I'm not sure if he shared the list.

Alix said...

Thanks Russel. Lance Laviolette want to e-mail you, can you e-mail him at

lance.laviolette (AT)

Kim said...

Looks like a great outing and really good birds Russel!

Russel Crosby said...

Yes, it was a great three days Kim. Didn't really want to come home. Lots of birds and the weather kept getting better.

Claudia MacLachlan said...

Wonderful photos - I especially like the gray catbird. You always get good pix at Brier Island.