Spring in MacGregor Point Provincial Park 2017
MacGregor Point Provincial Park has always been one of our favourite destinations and we make this trip annually, sometimes visiting it twice a year. We are never disappointed and continue to enjoy the birding, wildflowers, the surrounding areas and the annual Huron Fringe Birding Festival. This year marked the 20th anniversary of this wonderful nature and birding event.
We arrived at MacGregor Point on the last Tuesday of May and stayed through the weekend. This was a bit shorter than our past visits and we really noticed the lack of time to do everything we had hoped. Nevertheless, we made the most of the time we had and had another successful and fun six day adventure.
Great Crested Flycatcher
We spent two full days just exploring the park looking for birds, wildlife and, of course, the beautiful flora. One of the first things we noticed was that the birds were a little behind in their nest building schedules. Perhaps it was due to the very wet and cool spring. The insects also appeared to be behind, with very few dragonflies, butterflies or other insects. Biting insects were almost non-existent.
We also took a day trip to the Bruce Peninsula, stopping at the Oliphant Fen, Singing Sands, Bruce Peninsula National Park, Crane River, Lion’s Head and a few short hikes on some of the Bruce Trail sections.
On the weekend, we took part in a couple of the Huron Fringe Birding Festival events including a very interesting boat tour of the Fishing Islands in the Red Bay area. It was a real treat to see the gull colonies and heron rookeries on the islands. We observed colonies of Heron Gulls and Ring-billed Gulls and rookeries of Great Blue Herons and Great Egrets. Other nesting birds included Double-crested Cormorants, Piping Plovers (Sauble Beach) and Osprey (Oliphant). Bird sightings on the day included Spotted Sandpiper, Common Terns, Bald Eagles, Merlin, Barn, Tree & Bank Swallows, Common Mergansers and a Common Loon.
In the evenings we were entertained once again by our local American Woodcock as he performed his mating rituals. And in the background we enjoyed the songs of the Whip-poor-will, Veery, Ovenbird, Wood Thrush, White-throated Sparrow and Nighthawk along with the percussions of the Ruffed Grouse.
Black-throated Green Warbler
Other sightings included Northern Waterthrush, Black-throated Green Warbler, American Redstart, Common Yellowthroat, Yellow Warbler, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Hairy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Swamp Sparrow, Great Crested Flycatcher, Red-eyed Vireo,
It is always a treat to be in MacGregor Point during this time of year; being a part of the bird festival and enjoying the abundance of nature. It was a short but very satisfying visit.
Great Blue Heron Rookery