The KFN Executive strongly encourages carpooling for all Rambles & Fieldtrips. Please pay a fair share of the driving expenses to your driver. If you are not sure how much is fair, ask your driver how much he thinks the trip cost him. An example: Three people share a car from Kingston to Prince Edward Point. Each person might contribute $10.
Important note: Please be aware that ticks carrying Lyme disease have been found in the Kingston region, in places including Lemoine Point, Prince Edward County, Amherst Island, St. Lawrence Islands National Park and the Frontenac Arch. If you take part in field trips in these areas, or visit them on your own, we strongly recommend that you take precautions against tick bites. Please read this information on Lyme disease, adapted from a brochure from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care.
|Mar 26, 2017 - Sun||Howe Island|
Leader: Paul Mackenzie Phone: 613-547-5748 or email@example.com
We will drive on the island to look for waterfowl and various early migrants. Short walks possible depending on weather conditions. Meet at the Howe Island Ferry west parking lot at south end of Howe Island Ferry Road (south off Hwy 2 east of Kingston, opposite Joyceville Road) at 9 am to car pool. Dress warmly and bring lunch. Ferry fee is $6 per car. Return around 1 pm.
|Apr 04, 2017 - Tue||Ramble to Landon Bay|
Leader: Anne Robertson Phone: 613-389-6742
Visit site of 2017 BioBlitz. Meet at Information booth at the bottom of Fort Henry Hill. Bring lunch.
|Apr 18, 2017 - Tue||Ramble to Collins Creek|
Leader: Anne Robertson Phone: 613-389-6742
Meet at McCullough Park on Homeward Ave (N of Bath Rd between Collins Bay and Elmwood). Bring a snack and a drink.
|May 02, 2017 - Tue||Ramble to Marble Rock CA|
Leader: Anne Robertson Phone: 613-389-6742
Meet Kingslake plaza (Division St south of Hwy 401). Bring lunch and a drink.
|Jun 16, 2017 - Fri |
- Jun 17, 2017 - Sat
Leader: Anne Robertson
The 19th BioBlitz of the KFN will be held at Landon Bay (Thousand Islands National Park) June 16 to 17, 2017. Do plan to join us for this fun event us as we enjoy our annual BioBlitz and celebrate Canada 150 in cooperation with the Thousand Islands National Park. We will be recording all the species we can find in 24 hours. Details will be mailed to those on the e- mailing list in early April. If you would like to be added to this list please let Anne (613 389 6742 or firstname.lastname@example.org) or Janis Grant (613 548 3668 or janis.grant@ICloud.com) know. If you would like to volunteer to help with this event please contact us.
|Mar 25, 2017 - Sat |
- Mar 26, 2017 - Sun
|Presqu'ile Waterfowl Viewing Weekend|
Presqu'ile will be hosting their 41st Waterfowl Viewing Weekend, where nature enthusiasts can come and appreciate one of the great natural spectacles on earth - the return of migrating waterfowl to their staging areas along the lower Great Lakes. Presqu'ile is well situated to experience this phenomenon with close viewing and a good variety of species, at least normally. This very mild weather has opened the ice up early and ducks may be well scattered come the weekend. BUT any visit to Presqu'ile is a good one with something to see and on this weekend in addition to returning birds we will have lots of activities and displays to take in. The Nature Centre and Lighthouse Centre, featuring 'ducky' displays, artists, Bird Studies Canada rep, and children's activities are open 10am to 4pm. The Friends of Presqu'ile will also be there with a BBQ starting at 11am, and the Gift Store will be open.
There is a park admission fee of $10.00/vehicle.
If you want to come learn about ducks this is a great opportunity. If you are interested in coming out and helping with duck ID or in the Nature Centre, I would be more than happy to hear from you. For more information on the event or on volunteering please contact David Bree at 613 475-4324 ext. 225 or email@example.com.
|Jun 16, 2017 - Fri |
- Jun 17, 2017 - Sat
The 19th BioBlitz of the KFN will be held at Landon Bay (Thousand Islands National Park) June 16 to 17, 2017. Do plan to join us for this fun event us as we enjoy our annual BioBlitz and celebrate Canada 150 in cooperation with the Thousand Islands National Park. We will be recording all the species we can find in 24 hours. Details will be mailed to those on the emailing list in early April. If you would like to be added to this list please let Anne (613 389 6742 or firstname.lastname@example.org) or Janis Grant (613 548 3668 or janis.grant@ICloud.com) know. If you would like to volunteer to help with this event please contact us.
Kingston Field Trip - 2nd February 2014
Leader: Mark Read
Four members joined me for an enjoyable morning visiting a few of Kingston's birding locations on a day with vastly improved weather compared to the bone-numbing cold experienced during the previous few days. To get the day rolling, we headed up to Princess Towers where I had seen the resident pair of Peregrine Falcons just that morning. Of course, we missed seeing them but at least one member of the group stopped in later during the day and actually observed one of the pair take a Feral Pigeon. We then went down to the Wolfe Island Ferry Dock where waterfowl, though not numerous, are restricted to the ice-choked channel, there-by allowing for some close looks. Mallard numbered about 40 and in with them was a leucistic female, quite unusual. Of more interest though to those present were the two 1st winter drake Long-tailed Ducks allowing us very close views right from the dock. Also present were Common Goldeneye, Greater Scaup, a single American Black Duck and both Common and Red-breasted Mergansers - these allowing close comparison of the females.
We then decided to call in at the Invista plant to check out the open pool on Cataraqui Bay. Immediately upon our arrival we were greeted by an immature Snowy Owl. Up to 3 have been seen here but it was still nice to see this bird so quickly and easily. Scanning the pool, we logged 15 Mute Swans, 5 American Coot and the usual Canada Geese, Mallard, Gadwall and American Black Duck, albeit in lower numbers than typical. We then continued to the Ball Diamond where we could get better looks at the outfall, often a better area for diving ducks. Here we were rewarded with 9 Greater Scaup, a single Common Goldeneye and just one Common Merganser. However, the highlight for all was a Northern Shrike that first gave itself away with its scratchy yet melodic singing. We all enjoyed great views through the 'scope; Polly actually seeing the bird regurgitate a pellet as she was watching. With one of the party needing to head off to work, we decided to continue to Lemoine Point but not before seeing a Red-tailed Hawk on the way out.
We spent just over an hour at Lemoine Point and, although the wind was 'fresh' near the car park, enjoyed the birdlife in the shelter of the woods. However, one bird that was enjoying the open grassland was a female American Kestrel sitting on a pole observing us walk by. We soon began seeing numerous Black-capped Chickadees, all hoping for a free hand-out of sunflower seeds. We obliged and quickly attracted both Hairy and Downy Woodpecker to the vicinity but not to the hand. However, a diminutive pair of Red-breasted Nuthatches did come to the hand, allowing those with a fast shutter to snap a few shots. White-breasted Nuthatch, not to be usurped by its miniature cousin joined in the show and later came to the hand as well. This opportunity allowed us to compare the male and female of each species, with males having black crowns and females dark grey crowns.
Looping back to the car park, we added a few more species to the trip list including Golden-crowned Kinglet, Northern Cardinal, Dark-eyed Junco and Blue Jay. In total (including Peregrine), we saw 35 species - not too bad for a winter morning in Kingston.
KFN Field Trip Ithaca/Cornell University April 26-28, 2013,
By Gaye Beckwith, photos by Gaye Beckwith and Paul Mackenzie
Leaders: Gaye & Betsy Beckwith, Erwin Batalla, Alexandra Simmons
Participants: Karen Stinson, Jennifer Prior, Lynn Bell, Bud Rowe, Ken Robinson & Sigrid Dohrendorf Bob & Connie Gardiner, Maureen Sly, Will Irwin, Marg McLeod, Martin McLeod, Hugh Evans, Paul & Nitty Mackenzie, Margaret Henderson.
"If we hadn't seen anything else the 'backroom' tour of Cornell's Ornithology Lab made the trip worthwhile." The Lab tour led by Dr. Scott Taylor, former Queen's student, was a highlight for all of us. Scott, the Lab's Fuller Evolutionary Biology Postdoctoral Fellow examining hybridization between Black-capped Chickadees and Carolina Chickadees, showed us drawers of bird specimens and explained some of the research taking place with birds and other animals, such as fish, from all over the world. Seeing dried specimens of extinct Ivory-Billed Woodpeckers and Passenger Pigeons was a "bittersweet" experience.
Our trip to Ithaca, New York left Kingston at 7:30 a.m. on Friday with everyone fuelled on Timmy's coffee and under perfect weather conditions although these sunny skies and high teens temperatures were viewed cautiously following a month of foul, cool weather where winter did not give up easily. The itinerary for our adventure was planned through much discussion with Erwin Batalla and Alexandra Simmons, the latter having attended Cornell University in the 90's. An hour west of Syracuse, near the north end of Cayuga Lake, is the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge, where we stopped for lunch and began our search for birds returning north after the winter. At the visitor center we had close-up views of Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs, Green and Blue-winged Teal, Northern Pintail, Northern Shoveler, and Pied-billed Grebe. We also heard and saw Tufted Titmouse (a lifer for several people), soaring Bald Eagles, Ruddy Ducks, Eastern Bluebirds The Blue Bill Volume 60, No. 2 Page 57 and Yellow Warblers. For a complete list of 41 bird species seen during our 2-hour visit, check ebird. Following Montezuma some of the group walked short sections of trails around ponds at the nearby Seneca Meadows Wetland Preserve, an initiative of the Seneca Meadows Landfill. Nearly 600 acres, it contains wetland, forest, savannah and prairie habitats. Others got lost and headed down the west side of Cayuga Lake where they had already ordered ice cream at the Cayuga Lake Creamery before being rejoined there by the rest of the group. After our treats we stopped at Taughannock Falls State Park for a look at the beautiful falls and gorge.
Early Saturday morning in clear cool conditions, half the group ventured to Sapsucker Woods, surrounding the Cornell Ornithology Lab, to look for local and migrant birds. We weren't disappointed. 31 species included Wood Duck, Great Blue Heron, Red-bellied and Downy Woodpeckers, Brown Creeper, Northern Waterthrush, White-throated Sparrow, Rusty Blackbirds, and American Goldfinch. Following breakfast at the Econolodge where we stayed, we visited Cornell Lab of Ornithology Lab where Scott provided an informative, behind the scenes tour.
Saturday afternoon started with an exploration of the Cornell "Plantations". The arboretum and gardens offer a vast variety of flora. Many plants and trees were in bloom with forsythia and magnolia especially colourful. Early flower gardens and wildflower areas added life to the surroundings.
Pileated Woodpeckers, a Pine Warbler and Crows were seen in the plantations. Saturday's weather was ideal for being outdoors. Our next stop was the Robert H. Treman State Park southwest of Ithaca, where we hiked on the rim of a Page 58 June 2013 gorge and recorded a few new birds including Turkey Vultures, Dark-eyed Junco and Winter Wren. Returning to Ithaca we parked near the 'Commons' and small groups found restaurants to suit their liking.
Sunday morning was sunny, clear and warmer for 12 of us to visit Stewart Park at the south end of Cayuga Lake. 31 species of birds were seen by the group including a Baltimore Oriole, Cardinals, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Chimney Swift, a Warbling Vireo and a Carolina Wren.
Following breakfast and check-out we returned to Sapsucker Woods to explore other trails. Among 30 species seen were Broad-winged Hawk, Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, Tree Swallow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Pine Siskin, and of course Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers.
Time to head home. We headed north-west and picked up Interstate 81 near Cortland stopping briefly for lunch. To break up the 3-hour journey we exited 81 at Pulaski and traveled along the eastern end of Lake Ontario. Several state parks and conservation areas line this end of the lake. We stopped at Black Pond for an enjoyable walk along a boardwalk through woods, dunes and ponds to the shore of Lake Ontario.
Besides turtles, frogs, and fish we added Caspian Terns, Palm Warbler and Cedar Waxwings to give us over 100 bird species for the 3 days. Although the water temperature was still very cold, the exceptional weather afforded the opportunity for some beachgoers to walk in the water, a few even taking a dip. They weren't from our group, but they were probably Canadian, eh? Our convoy of 6 vehicles split up, and everyone headed home after a super weekend of birding, camaraderie, enjoying nature. "thank you to all of you for sharing, encouraging, laughing, spotting and for just generally being a fine group of people ..." "Enjoyed the trip. It was well thought out and well coordinated. As new group members we felt welcome. Enjoyed birding with experts who shared their knowledge and scopes. Looking forward to another adventure" The Blue Bill Volume 60, No. 2 Page 59 "We give thanks to the Ruddy ducks that swam and dove in front of us to show us their stiff tails. Also, we thank the Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs that stood together in the mudflats and showed us their differences. We thank the Red- bellied woodpeckers and Yellow- bellied sapsuckers of the Sapsucker woods who spoke to us in their language. Also, for the Northern waterthrush who sang beautifully and actually let us see him from the boardwalk. Thank you to the Tufted titmouses who repeated their song so clearly and so repeatedly so that we could memorize their greeting. And thanks to the Broad winged hawk who made the flypasts for us, right in front of the Cornell lab building. The Blue- gray gnatcatchers presented themselves in Lewis Park, very accommodating.
We give thanks to the many native wildflowers that blossomed in the warm spring sunlight at the Cornell horticultural gardens, just in time for our visit.
Oh, and by the way, many thanks to the good folks from KFN who led us through this field trip, bringing us to all these natural wonders, and pointing out to us the fascination of nature."
Frontenac Park Field Trip
Sunday, February 2013
Six KFN members hiked the Doe Lake Trail in Frontenac Park on a mild winter morning. We saw geese, blue jays, chickadees, white breasted nuthatches, common ravens, a hairy woodpecker, a downy woodpecker, and 3 pileated woodpeckers which had been harassing a barred owl which we searched for but didn't find. The snow surface was covered with snow fleas in many areas. Animal tracks were very prevalent and we were able to identify squirrel, otter, deer, porcupine and possibly fisher.
Leader: Gaye Beckwith
Participants: Erwin Batalla, Sandra Simmons, Dorothy Forrester, Gilles Bisson, Ken Robinson
Photos: Gaye Beckwith
Fungi field trip September 24, 2006 [ View Report ]