huronfringefest

One of Canada's Premier Birding and Nature Festivals

Archive for March 2014

SHOOTING ALL DAY WITH DOUG

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Dougie3Since retiring from teaching Doug has indulged his lifelong passions of nature study, photography and travel. He can often be found wandering the back roads of Grey and Bruce Counties, camera in hand, searching for that perfect shot of flora, fauna, birds and landforms. You will definitely feel that a day with Doug in the field is informative, rewarding and a whole lot of fun. A member of the Bruce Birding Club, the Saugeen Shores Camera Club and a past president of The Friends of MacGregor. Doug Pedwell has also participated in the Huron Fringe Birding Festival as a event leader and committee member for quite a few years now. Doug will be leading three events at HFBF. Here is his description of what he expects to accomplish on Nature and Landscape Photography in South Bruce Peninsula (B10).

For this all day photo shoot we will heading into South Bruce Peninsula. Car-pooling will be necessary as parking is extremely limited in some places. This event is geared towards those with SLR type cameras. Tripods will be necessary as some of the locations may be low light conditions due to the amount forest canopy cover.

loesel's Twayblade

Loesel’s Twayblade

We hope to photograph several orchids such as Hooker’s Orchid, Moccasin flower, Loesel’s Twayblade and European Twayblade. Telephoto lenses are the best way to photograph them.

Hooker's Orchid

Hooker’s Orchid

Mocassin Flower

Mocassin Flower

Some of the routes to a couple of our photographic targets are difficult and do not follow trails but for the most part we will be on trails or boardwalks.

Stone

One of the topics we will cover is landscape photography and shooting of panoramas.

To be on the safe side bring a pair of rubber boots. We may not need them but after this winter’s spring thaw, we might. Bring your lunch, water and snacks.

We will be going rain or shine so if you have waterproof covers for your camera equipment bring it. Some of the most interesting shots occur when it is raining or shortly after the rain.

 (Follow our Blog for more of Doug’s comments on his other events.)

REGISTER NOW FOR ALL OF DOUGS EVENTS: 

http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org

A37 – 1:30 pm – BOTANY & BIRDING IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Monday, May 26. (Moderate, car-pool, bring lunch, snacks and water)   This all day event returns by 8:45 pm.

B4 – 7:30 am – DOWN & DIRTY – WILDFLOWER PHOTOGRAPHY – Thursday, May 29.

B10 – 6:45 am – NATURE & LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Thursday, May 30. (Difficult, car-pool, bring lunch. Bring DSLR camera & accessories.)

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 HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL – ONE OF THE TOP 100 FESTIVALS IN ONTARIO

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MAY 23 to MAY 26  & MAY 29 to JUNE 1, MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK, PORT ELGIN

http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

https://twitter.com/fompp

 birdfest@rogers.com

 

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BIRDBANDING WITH BRENDAN IS BACK

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LIVE BIRD BANDING DEMONSTRATIONS – Saturday May 24 – Sunday May 25 – 6:00 AM to Noon

NO REGISTRATION REQUIRED

Brendan and Friend

Brendan and Friend

A birder, photographer (http://btoewsphotos.zenfolio.com) and bird bander…when it comes to birds, Brendan does it all. For the past 7 years, he’s spent most summers on the Bruce Peninsula. This will be his 4th year working with the Huron Fringe Birding Festival, going from a hike assistant to hike leader, to daily banding demos.

He banded his first bird (a Gray Catbird) in the summer of 2008 while a participant in the Young Ornithologists Workshop at the Long Point Bird Observatory. The following year he was accepted into the Young Ornithologists Internship, a month-long program that helped to hone his banding skills. He has spent over 7 months staying full-time at bird observatories, and has banded close to 4000 birds of 127 species.  In that time he’s had the opportunity to see and band many interesting species, such as Yellow-breasted Chat, Connecticut Warbler, Barred Owl, Northern Shrike, Bonaparte’s Gull, Baird’s Sandpiper and many more.

Bird banding data has many scientific uses, including documenting population dynamics, migration routes and species’ life spans.  It also helps us understand the daily life of an individual bird, especially when colour bands are used.  Banding helps to determine the size of territories, and how faithful certain birds are to specific breeding and wintering territories.

Brendan1

Brendan will run banding demos on Saturday, May 24 and Sunday May 25, starting close to sunrise 6:00 A-mish) and going until around noon. For the safety of the birds, bird banding is weather dependent. Sessions are free. There is no need to register…just show up…early.

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL

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bird ONE OF THE TOP 100 FESTIVALS IN ONTARIO

REGISTER NOW AT:

http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org

MCGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK, PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO – MAY 23 to MAY 26 & MAY 29 to JUNE 1

 http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

 birdfest@rogers.com

 

 

 

A BOTANY AND BIRDING DAY WITH DOUG

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A member of the Bruce Birding Club, the Saugeen Shores Camera Club and a past president of The Friends of MacGregor, Doug Pedwell has also participated in the Huron Fringe Birding Festival as an event leader and committee member for quite a few years now.

Dougie

Since retiring from teaching Doug has indulged his lifelong passions of nature study, photography and travel. He can often be found wandering the back roads of Grey and Bruce Counties, camera in hand, searching for that perfect shot of flora, fauna, birds and landforms. You will definitely feel that a day with Doug in the field is informative, rewarding  and a whole lot of fun. Doug will be leading three events at this year’s Festival. Here is his description of what he expects to accomplish on Botany and Birding in the South Bruce Peninsula.

A new concept is being offered this year – Botany and Birding in South Bruce Peninsula. It begins with afternoon sessions at 1:30 pm and runs into the evening.  Travelling to the area around Wiarton, the group will head towards Skinner’s Bluff and Bruce’s Caves. These properties of the Grey Sauble Conservation Authority are homes to a variety of ecosystems which will provide us opportunities to encounter some spring wildflowers and some uncommon ferns.

Walking Fern

Walking Fern

We will follow sections of the Bruce Trail along the top of the Niagara Escarpment in the Skinner’s Bluff area, which will give us some great views of Colpoy’s Bay as well as a chance to see and hear some forest birds. From there we will head to Bruce’s Caves for some botany and geology. This area is a fern lover’s paradise and also contains a number of spring wildflowers.

Spring Beauty

Spring Beauty

Walking in this area ranges from medium to difficult. The Talus slope at Bruce’s Caves is the most difficult portion.

Brewer's Blackbird

Brewer’s Blackbird

From Bruce’s Caves we head to Wiarton where we will have a bite to eat. Bring your supper or you can get something at Tim Horton’s where we will make a pit stop for a civilized washroom.

Bluebird

Bluebird

We then bird our way back towards MacGregor Point Park via Wiarton Lagoons, Isaac Lake, Sky Lake, Red Bay, Oliphant, and Sauble Beach. All of which are local birding hotspots. We should see a variety of waterfowl and songbirds, grassland birds, nesting Bald Eagles and if they return, Piping Plovers.

Wild Ginger

Wild Ginger

(All photographs courtesy of Doug Pedwell. Follow our Blog. We will be posting more of Doug’s photos as well as comments on his other events over the next few weeks.)

REGISTER NOW FOR ALL OF DOUGS EVENTS: http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org 

A37 – 1:30 pm – BOTANY & BIRDING IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULAMonday, May 26.This all day event returns to the Park by 8:45 pm.  (Moderate, car-pool, bring lunch, snacks and water)   

B4 – 7:30 am – DOWN & DIRTY – WILDFLOWER PHOTOGRAPHY – Thursday, May 29.

B10 – 6:45 am – NATURE & LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Thursday, May 30. (Difficult, car-pool, bring lunch)  Bring DSLR camera & accessories.

Huron Fringe Birding Festival  - Recognized as One of the Top 100 Festivals in Ontario

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL – ONE OF THE TOP 100 FESTIVALS IN ONTARIO

brdfest2MAY 23 to MAY 26  & MAY 29 to JUNE 1

MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK, PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

https://twitter.com/fompp

 birdfest@rogers.com

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL EVENTS ARE FILLING UP FAST!

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Below is a complete list of the Huron Fringe Birding Festival events that still have openings as of this posting. Have a look. Then register your choice on our website: friendsofmacgregor.org. Sign up today.

It won't be long now.

It won’t be long now.

FRIDAY MAY 23

11 OPENINGS – A2 – 8:00 am – ROCK STARS OF THE CITY – Peter Middleton. Fifty species of fern are found in Grey/Bruce and many of them can be seen in and around Owen Sound.  With Peter as your guide, you will be certain to meet a good number of these “rock stars”.

7 OPENINGS – A4 – 6:30 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR’S SOUTHERN BOUNDARY – James Turland. This road trip explores the forest, wetlands and abandoned farms along the park’s southern boundary.  A walk to Ducks Unlimited pond includes visits to the viewing tower and bird blind.

10 OPENINGS – A5 – 7:00 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR – Marilyn Ohler. Learn more about birding and MacGregor Point Provincial Park by joining festival veteran, Marilyn Ohler, on a morning walk in the park.

ONLY 2 OPENINGS – A7 – 1:30 pm – TREE IDENTIFICATION USING LEAVES & NEEDLES – Jim Coles. We will identify conifers and hardwoods in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre by leaf and needle characteristics. The use of botanical keys will differentiate between species.

6 OPENINGS – A8 – 1:30 pm – THE GEOLOGY & GEOMORPHOLOGY OF THE HURON FRINGE – Norbert Woerns. This driving and walking field trip will include stops at the Algonquin and Nipissing bluffs and a walk along the Detroit River Group outcrops to Gunn Point at Inverhuron Park.

24 OPENINGS – A9 – 1:30 pm – GETTING INTIMATE WITH NATURE: RE-DISCOVER NATURE THROUGH VIDEOS – Kerry Jarvis. Living in a “YouTube” generation creates exciting opportunities for naturalists to capture and preserve their experiences through video.  In this new workshop, Kerry will share nature video vignettes that he has created from outings and from his gardens.  (Indoors)

SATURDAY MAY 24

6 OPENINGS – A11 – 6:30 am – SOUTH SHORELINE TOUR – Marshall Byle. Marshall will follow the Lake Huron shoreline and include stops at varied habitats between MacGregor Point and Inverhuron.  Species may include Common Moorhen and Orchard Orioles.

ONLY 4 OPENINGS – A12 – 7:00 am – SAUGEEN HIGH – Joy Albrecht. The Amphitheatre gardens, high above the Saugeen River, will be the setting for this hike. We will be observing spring migrants, nesting species, shore birds, and raptors.

16 OPENINGS – A13 – 8:30 am – UNIQUE HABITATS ALONG THE LAKE HURON SHORELINE  – Judith Jones. Judith is an expert on dune ecology and many local species at risk.  Your morning will be spent learning about the plants along the sand dunes at Inverhuron; in the afternoon you will check out the near-shoreline and forest habitats at MacGregor Point.

11 OPENINGS – A16 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Richard Tofflemire. Campground areas, dune habitat and the Lake Huron shoreline will be featured on this morning hike.

9 OPENINGS – A17 -7:30 AM- THE TALE OF THE PIPING PLOVER – Stewart Nutt. Piping Plover behaviours including: courtship, feeding, life history, territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and/or explained during your time with these birds.  Become a ‘Plover Lover’.

ONLY 2 OPENINGS – A18 – 1:30 pm – BIKING MacGREGOR – Doug Martin. Follow Doug along a variety of the extensive biking trails in the park, with a bit of park history, natural history and birding thrown in!  (Moderate, hybrid or mountain bike)

12 OPENINGS – A20 -1:30 pm – MAKE YOUR SIGHTINGS COUNT – Mike Burrell. The Citizen Science project eBird is a comprehensive online bird database that is revolutionizing how birders go about their business. Contributing is simple.  Other Citizen Science projects will also be discussed.

14 OPENINGS – A22 – 1:30 PM – TIPS & TECHNIQUES ON SUCCESSFULLY PHOTOGRAPHING TREES – Kerry Jarvis. Trees are often seen as a backdrop to a scene.  Join Kerry in this new photography workshop hike, as he explores and inspires photographers to look at trees differently.  (Moderate) Intermediate to experienced DSLR camera users. (Bring Tripod & zoom/close-up lenses.)

36 OPENINGS – A23 – 4:30 pm – SOCIAL.  5:30 pm – BANQUET & PRESENTATION – BIRDS & SOME OF THEIR MYSTERIES – David Lamble. David is no ordinary bird lover.  He will talk about bird intelligence – bird vision and his passion, bird banding, and how they all contribute to our understanding of birds.  (St. Joseph’s Parish Hall, Port Elgin, Chicken Buffet, Harrigan’s Catering) (Early bird price – $35 extra per person; after April 15 or for banquet/presentation only – $45 extra per person)  Casual. Bar available. Pre-registration required. Silent auction. Contact registrar by May 1 with dietary restrictions.

SUNDAY MAY 25

ONLY 3 OPENINGS – A25 – 7:00 am – HIDDEN TREASURES OF THE HURON COAST – Peter Middleton. This outing will explore Lake Huron coastlines, both present and past, north of Sauble Falls.  You will visit Ontario Nature’s oldest reserve, Petrel Point, and their newest, Sauble Dunes.  (Moderate, car-pool, bring lunch, sturdy footwear)

ONLY 4 OPENINGS– A28 – 8:00 am – UP WITH THE BIRDS – Doug Martin. Continue the tradition that pre-dates the birding festival with this morning walk along the Tower Trail to the Ducks Unlimited pond and the viewing tower.

8 OPENINGS – A29 – 8:30 am – THE LONGEST, SHORTEST WALK YOU WILL EVER TAKE – Richard & Andalyne Tofflemire. It’s more than just identifying what you see.  We will focus on how birds and bugs interact with each other.  But don’t expect to cover a lot of distance because there’s so much to see right at your feet and above your head!

ONLY 5 OPENINGS – A30 – 1:30 pm – NATURE RAMBLE – MacGREGOR POINT SOUTH – Norah Toth. Norah will take you to one of her favourite areas in MacGregor Point.  Wildflowers and birds seen along the route will be highlighted.

ONLY 5 OPENINGS – A31 – 1:30 pm – NATURE RAMBLE – OLD SHORE ROAD TRAIL – John Reaume. A leisurely walk along the Old Shore Road Trail near the Visitor Centre.  Plants, flowers, dragonflies, birds – let’s see what we find.

9 OPENINGS – A33 – 1:30 pm – FUN, FROG FROLIC AT MacGREGOR POINT – Kerry Jarvis. Join Kerry on this fun frog frolic to listen to, locate and observe several species of frog and the American Toad at MacGregor Point.  (If you have them, bring camera and close-up binoculars.) 

12 OPENINGS – A34 – 7:15 pm – THE PLIGHT OF THE BUMBLEBEE – Sheila Colla. Come learn about the status of Canadian bumblebees and what you can do to help wild populations of these important native pollinators.  Tools for identification to species level and a new Citizen Science project will also be discussed.  (Indoors)

MONDAY MAY 26

16 OPENINGS – A37 – 1:30 pm – BOTANY & BIRDING IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Doug Pedwell. We will be observing a variety of ecosystems including forest, escarpment, rocky shorelines, marshes, lakes, sandy shorelines, and pasturelands.  (Bring lunch, snacks and water. This all day event returns by 8:45 pm.)

12 OPENINGS – A38 – 6:30 am – BIRDING THE PERIPHERY OF THE PARK – Mike Burrell. Grab your binoculars AND notebooks!  While we are out enjoying the birds we will also be contributing to one of the biggest Citizen Science projects ever – eBird.  After the hike we’ll have a quick demo of how simple it is to really make your observations count.

9 OPENINGS – A39 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – James Turland. Walk the Tower Trail from the park road to the Ducks Unlimited pond.  Habitat is a mixture of wetlands and hardwood forests.

16 OPENINGS – A40 – 1:30 pm – NATURE RAMBLE – OLD SHORE ROAD TRAIL – Laura Cook. Laura will take you along one of her favourite trails in MacGregor Point.  Wildflowers, insects and birds seen along the route will be highlighted.

26 OPENINGS –  A42 – 7:15 pm – IMPORTANT BIRD AREAS – Mike Burrell. Come hear about some of Ontario’s most important sites for bird conservation and how your help can make a difference on a global scale.

31 OPENINGS – A43 – 9:00 pm – AN EVENING OF ASTRONOMY – THE NIGHT SKY – John Hlynialuk & Bluewater Astronomical Society. John will take you on a tour through the deep reaches of the universe.  Program will feature astronomical highlights of 2014 as well as Saturn, Mars and more distant objects like nebula, clusters and galaxies. Outdoor viewing through telescopes is weather permitting.  (Indoors/outdoors)

THURSDAY MAY 29

ONLY 4 OPENINGS – B2 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE HURON FRINGE NORTH – James Turland. Huron Fringe refers to the sand and gravel lowlands adjacent to Lake Huron.  This driving tour explores the fringe between MacGregor Point and Sauble Falls to the north. (Bring lunch)

11 OPENINGS – B3 – 7:30 am – TIPS & TECHNIQUES ON PHOTOGRAPHING WATERFALLS – Kerry Jarvis. Participants will get an opportunity to capture several local waterfalls by experimenting with a variety of photographic techniques.  (Bring lunch – Intermediate to experienced DSLR camera users. Bring tripod & zoom/close-up lenses.)

13 OPENINGS – B4 – 7:30 am – DOWN & DIRTY – WILDFLOWER PHOTOGRAPHY – Doug Pedwell. Participants will take their cameras and equipment to photograph wildflowers at a variety of locations in the park.

10 OPENINGS – B5 – 1:30 pm – BOTANY OF THE “FRINGE” – Barbara Palmer. Many unique shoreline plants, including Dwarf Lake Iris, are found in MacGregor Point.  Barbara will help you learn to identify them.

7 OPENINGS – B6 – 1:30 pm – TREE & SHRUB IDENTIFICATION – Bob Gray. Take a leisurely walk in the interior of the park to identify trees and shrubs and to see how species associate with different site types.

20 OPENINGS – B7 -7:15 pm – ONTARIO’S BIRD SURVEYS – WHAT ARE THEY TELLING US? – Mike Cadman. Citizen scientists provide a wealth of data on the size and trends of Ontario’s bird populations.  This presentation will outline surveys, methods and findings.  Special attention will be given to the decline of aerial insectivores (swallows, swifts, nightjars).  (Indoors)

FRIDAY MAY 30

12 OPENINGS – B8 – 6:00 am – CABOT HEAD/DYER’S BAY – A BIRDING AREA OF IMPORTANCE – Rod Steinacher. Visit some of the Peninsula’s best-known birding spots, such as Dyer’s Bay, the sparrow fields near Larkwhistle and Crane Lake.  You will have the opportunity to observe migration monitoring and bird banding at the Cabot Head Research Station.  (Bring lunch)

6 OPENINGS – B10 – 6:45 am – NATURE & LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Doug Pedwell. We will photograph some of the unique plants and rugged landscapes that the Niagara Escarpment has created. (Difficult, car-pool, bring lunch. Bring DSLR camera & accessories.)

14 OPENINGS – B11 – 6:00 am – IS IT A BIRD OR YOUR MNEMONIC? – Michael Carlson. A field workshop on how to listen to and identify bird vocalization.  Michael will use the Tower Trail where you will listen for orioles, woodpeckers, warblers, flycatchers and waterfowl.  (Car-pool, for experienced birders only)

9 OPENINGS – B12 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE MacGREGOR BOUNDARY – Mike Cadman. Join Mike as he visits some hot spots including the Day Use beach, the Park Office, the old cottage entry road and along the Townline.

17 OPENINGS – B13 – 1:30 pm – WILDFLOWERS: HISTORICAL FACTS & FICTION – Heather Starrs. Legends and superstitions are attached to many common, and not so common, plants found at MacGregor Point.  Heather’s walk will introduce you to some plants’ stories.  (Easy) (Limit 20)

ONLY 5 OPENINGS – B14 – 1:30 pm – ROADSIDE BOTANY RAMBLE – Larry Lamb. Explore various roadside habitats in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre.  Learn to use identification keys and Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide (Bring yours along!).

12 OPENINGS – B16 – 7:15 pm – A FLING WITH SHOREBIRDS: BILLS, BREASTS & A LITTLE TAIL – Mark Peck. For many birders, shorebirds can be notoriously difficult to identify.  Join in the fun as we look at the important characteristics that help simplify common Ontario shorebirds.  (Indoors)

SATURDAY MAY 31

8 OPENINGS – B17 – 6:00 am – BIG DAY ON THE BRUCE – Michael Carlson. Are you ready for a full day of birding?  If so, you won’t want to miss this morning to night birding marathon on the Bruce Peninsula.  (Easy, car-pool; bring lunch, snacks and a walking dinner.)

11 OPENINGS – B18 – 7:30 am – SECRETS OF THE GEORGIAN BAY FORMATION – Bob Gray. This daylong excursion will explore several hidden features of the Niagara Escarpment.  Bob will share theories about how these features were formed. (Difficult, car-pool, bring lunch.)

15 OPENINGS – B19 – 7:00 am – ROAD BIRDING FOR GRASSLAND BIRDS – Brett Woodman. Tour the local countryside looking for the elusive nesting grassland birds of Saugeen Shores.

6 OPENINGS – B20 – 7:30 am – BIRDING BY NEST – Mark Peck. Learn how to locate, identify and record nesting information for the Ontario Nest Records Scheme.

ONLY 3 OPENINGS – B21 – 8:00 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR – OLD FIELDS & TRAILS – James Turland. A morning walk through varied habitats along the Deer Run and Rotary Way trails in the northeast corner of the Park. These are infrequently birded areas.

7 OPENINGS – B22 – 9:00 am – DYNAMIC DIGITAL CAMERA TIPS – Jennifer O’Reilly. Great for beginner or intermediate photographers. Step by step instruction on how to take award-winning compositions using features on your camera! (Suitable for point-and-shoot or DSLR cameras.)

11 OPENINGS – B23 – 1:30 pm – THE TALE OF THE PIPING PLOVER – Stewart Nutt. Piping Plover behaviours including: courtship, feeding, life history, territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and/or explained during your time with these birds.  Become a ‘Plover Lover’.

ONLY 4 OPENINGS – B24 – 1:30 pm – WILDFLOWER DIVERSITY WITHIN THE FRINGE – Brett Woodman. Here’s your chance to learn about and appreciate some of MacGregor Point’s varied wildflowers.  Brett will show you some of his favourite plants.

6 OPENINGS – B25 – 1:30 pm – PLANT & WILDFLOWER RAMBLE – Larry Lamb. Walk the trails and campground loops from the Day Use area to Pitcher Plant Marl.  Learn to use identification keys and Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide (bring yours along!).

7 OPENINGS – B27 – 1:30 pm – ADVANCED DIGITAL CAMERA TECHNIQUES – Jennifer O’Reilly. This workshop takes you out into the ‘field’ for hands on photography.  Learn pro techniques guaranteed to put the ‘wow’ factor into your photographs.  (Point-and-shoot or DSLR cameras.)

33 OPENINGS – B28 -5:00 pm to 6:30 pm – BRUCE COUNTY BEEF DINNER – Harrigan’s Catering, Southampton.  In MacGregor Point Provincial Park, additional charge of $17. Dinner combined with B29 as a single event $23. Pre-registration required.)

17 OPENINGS – B29 – 7:15 pm – THE STRAIT OF GIBRALTAR: A BIRD MIGRATION HOTSPOT – Justin Peter. Each autumn, millions of birds that breed in Europe will go to Africa to spend the winter.  In this illustrated talk, Justin will shed some light on the mysteries of bird migration across the Strait of Gibraltar and on his experiences there. (Indoors)

SUNDAY JUNE 1

7 OPENINGS – B30 – 6:00 am – MALCOLM BLUFFS & CAPE CROKER – Alfred Raab. Bird in a variety of habitats within the Cape Croker Peninsula and Malcolm Bluffs Nature Reserve. The cliffs above Colpoy’s Bay shoreline provide spectacular vistas

17 OPENINGS – B32 -6:30 AM – BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Justin Peter. Hike the Tower Trail and check the Ducks Unlimited pond from both the viewing tower and bird blind. Habitat is a mix of wetlands and hardwood forests.

18 OPENINGS – B33 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE PERIPHERY – James Turland. Woodland, lakeshore, wetlands and abandoned fields are some of the habitats involved. (Easy, car-pool)

ONLY 4 OPENINGS – B34 – 8:00 am – SEARCHING FOR STRAGGLERS – MacGREGOR’S LATE MIGRANTS – Michael Carlson. Join Michael as he searches select spots in MacGregor for breeding birds as well as late spring migrants, such as Yellow-bellied Flycatcher and Gray-cheeked Thrush.

8 OPENINGS – B35 – 1:30 pm – EXPLORING KINGHURST FOREST – Tanya Pulfert & Catherine Jimenea. Kinghurst Forest is a special place and Catherine and Tanya are keen to take you for a walk through this Ontario Nature property.  On this general nature walk you will be a Citizen Scientist and report your reptile and amphibian sightings.

12 OPENINGS – B36 – 1:30 pm – FUN, FROG FROLIC AT MacGREGOR POINT – Kerry Jarvis. Join Kerry on this fun frog frolic to listen to, locate and observe several species of frog and the American Toad at MacGregor Point. (If you have them, bring camera and close-up binoculars.)

15 OPENINGS – B37 – 7:15 pm – SUNSET WALK – John Cummings. The Lake Huron shoreline offers some of the most spectacular sunsets in the world.  What a wonderful way to enjoy a sunset with friends. 

REGISTER NOW. friendsofmacgregor.org

 15 EVENTS ARE FULL AND THE REST ARE FILLING UP FAST

Email: birdfest@rogers.com

https://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival.

HFBF TITLE

MAY 23 to MAY 26 – MAY 29 tor JUNE 1 -2014

Top100LogoOne of Ontario’s Top 100 Festivals

MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK – PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

 

THE STRAIT OF GIBRALTAR: A BIRD MIGRATION HOTSPOT

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  A Special Presentation by Justin Peter – B29 – Saturday May 31 – 7:15 PM

Gibraltar

The Strait of Gibraltar and Morocco beyond.

Each autumn, millions of birds that breed in Europe migrate to Africa to spend the winter. The trip is not necessarily a direct one, since many birds will avoid crossing the Mediterranean Sea at all costs. The Strait of Gibraltar in between Spain and Morocco represents the shortest distance between the western half of Europe and Africa and consequently Spain acts as a ‘funnel’ for hundreds of thousands of these birds.

Snake Eagle

Short-toed Snake Eagle

The Strait is an ideal location to study migratory patterns of European birds as well as changes in their populations. In 2010, Justin Peter volunteered for a non-profit organization that monitors bird migration there, with a particular interest in raptors and other soaring birds. In his illustrated talk, he will shed some light on the mysteries of bird migration across the Strait of Gibraltar and on his experiences there.

Justin truly lives “for the birds”. In fact, he cannot remember a time when he was not interested in birds and nature.

Justin & Snowy

He spent much of his childhood consulting his considerable nature book collection. At age 14, a family friend invited Justin to attend the birding course he was teaching for adults as part of the local school board’s continuing education program. He soon assumed the role of unofficial assistant in the classroom as well as co-leader and, later, leader of the field excursions.

After university studies that saw his interest in nature fall temporarily to the wayside, he soon re-directed his interests to the outdoors, landing work as a seasonal, and then full-time interpretive naturalist at Gatineau Park, a federally managed park in Quebec near Ottawa.

Three years later, he began full-time work as Senior Park Naturalist at Algonquin Park, where spent almost 7 years, organizing the park’s educational programming based at the Visitor Centre, recruiting and mentoring promising young interpretive naturalists, and assisting with various park management activities.

Justin joined Quest Nature Tours in 2013 as Director of Programs, where he continues to apply and expand his interests in wildlife (including birds, of course!) On the side, Justin has participated in various bird-related projects. He married his interests in birds and in languages by participating in a migration-monitoring program at the Strait of Gibraltar in Spain.

He also did a stint as a bird-banding assistant at the Observatoire d’oiseaux de Tadoussac in Quebec. His very favourite thing will always be leading bird walks. He is particularly interested in bird behavior and vocalizations, and enjoys raising others’ awareness of these aspects in the field.

Justin Peter – The Strait of Gibraltar: A Bird Migration Hotspot – B29 – Saturday May 31 – 7:15 PM

ALSO – B32 – Birding the Tower Trail – Sunday, June 1 – 6:30 AM.  Justin guides you on a hike along the Tower Trail and the Ducks Unlimited Pond from both the viewing tower and the bird blind. The habitat is a mixture of wetlands and hardwood  forests.

REGISTER NOW AT: http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org 

Come see what he is looking at. Justin counting raptors at the Strait of Gibraltar.

Come see what he is looking at. Justin counting raptors at the Strait of Gibraltar.

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL – ONE OF THE TOP 100 FESTIVALS IN ON TARIO

Huron Fringe Birding Festival  - Recognized as One of the Top 100 Festivals in Ontariobrdfest2

MAY 23 to MAY 26  & MAY 29 to JUNE 1

MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK, PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

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Email: birdfest@rogers.com

RECOGNITION AND REGISTRATION FOR HURON FRINGEFEST

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Top100LogoFestivals and Events Ontario (FEO) announced the 2014 Top 100 Festivals & Events in Ontario.  We are happy to say that the Huron Fringe Birding Festival was one of the recipients.  We couldn’t be more pleased as we join a select group of Ontario Festivals, which represent some of the most well-known and respected celebrations in the province. This recognition just confirms what some of our attendees have been saying all along:

This is a fantastic festival! I recommend it to everyone…its so much more than birds-nature/plants/ butterflies/photography. Just great!  I can’t wait for next year.

brdfest2We also launched our own, dedicated Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival. Come visit us. “LIKE” us to keep up to date with everything that’s happening at the Festival. If you care to post your comments on our page or leave us a message, please feel free to do so.

On top of all this, registrations for HFBF events are filling up fast. Matter of fact about 18 events are already sold out. So, if you plan on joining us this year, you might want to move quickly to avoid disappointment.

Below is a complete list of what is still open. (Sold out events are not listed.) Have a look. Then reserve your registration choices on our website: friendsofmacgregor.org and sign up today.

FRIDAY MAY 23

A2 – 8:00 am – ROCK STARS OF THE CITY – Peter Middleton.   

Fifty species of fern are found in Grey/Bruce and many of them can be seen in and around Owen Sound.  With Peter as your guide, you will be certain to meet a good number of these “rock stars”.

A3 – 6:00 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR – OLD FIELDS & TRAILS – Judith King. 

A morning walk through the varied habitats along the Deer Run and Rotary Way trails in the northeast corner of the Park.  These are infrequently birded areas.

A4 – 6:30 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR’S SOUTHERN BOUNDARY – James Turland.

This road trip explores the forest, wetlands and abandoned farms along the park’s southern boundary.  A walk to Ducks Unlimited pond includes visits to the viewing tower and bird blind.

A5 – 7:00 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR – Marilyn Ohler.

Learn more about birding and MacGregor Point Provincial Park by joining festival veteran, Marilyn Ohler, on a morning walk in the park.

A7 – 1:30 pm – TREE IDENTIFICATION USING LEAVES & NEEDLES – Jim Coles.

We will identify conifers and hardwoods in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre by leaf and needle characteristics. The use of botanical keys will differentiate between species.

A8 – 1:30 pm – THE GEOLOGY & GEOMORPHOLOGY OF THE HURON FRINGE – Norbert Woerns.

This driving and walking field trip will include stops at the Algonquin and Nipissing bluffs and a walk along the Detroit River Group outcrops to Gunn Point at Inverhuron Park.

A9 – 1:30 pm – GETTING INTIMATE WITH NATURE: RE-DISCOVER NATURE THROUGH VIDEOS – Kerry Jarvis.

Living in a “YouTube” generation creates exciting opportunities for naturalists to capture and preserve their experiences through video.  In this new workshop, Kerry will share nature video vignettes that he has created from outings and from his gardens.  (Indoors)

SATURDAY MAY 24

A11 – 6:30 am – SOUTH SHORELINE TOUR – Marshall Byle.

Marshall will follow the Lake Huron shoreline and include stops at varied habitats between MacGregor Point and Inverhuron.  Species may include Common Moorhen and Orchard Orioles.

A12 – 7:00 am – SAUGEEN HIGH – Joy Albrecht.

The Amphitheatre gardens, high above the Saugeen River, will be the setting for this hike. We will be observing spring migrants, nesting species, shore birds, and raptors.

A13 – 8:30 am – UNIQUE HABITATS ALONG THE LAKE HURON SHORELINE  – Judith Jones.

Judith is an expert on dune ecology and many local species at risk.  Your morning will be spent learning about the plants along the sand dunes at Inverhuron; in the afternoon you will check out the near-shoreline and forest habitats at MacGregor Point.
A16 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Richard Tofflemire.

Campground areas, dune habitat and the Lake Huron shoreline will be featured on this morning hike.

A17 -7:30 AM- THE TALE OF THE PIPING PLOVER – Stewart Nutt.

Piping Plover behaviours including: courtship, feeding, life history, territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and/or explained during your time with these birds.  Become a ‘Plover Lover’.

A18 – 1:30 pm – BIKING MacGREGOR – Doug Martin.

Follow Doug along a variety of the extensive biking trails in the park, with a bit of park history, natural history and birding thrown in!  (Moderate, hybrid or mountain bike)

A20 -1:30 pm – MAKE YOUR SIGHTINGS COUNT – Mike Burrell.

The Citizen Science project eBird is a comprehensive online bird database that is revolutionizing how birders go about their business. Contributing is simple.  Other Citizen Science projects will also be discussed.

A22 – 1:30 PM – TIPS & TECHNIQUES ON SUCCESSFULLY PHOTOGRAPHING TREES – Kerry Jarvis.

Trees are often seen as a backdrop to a scene.  Join Kerry in this new photography workshop hike, as he explores and inspires photographers to look at trees differently.  (Moderate) Intermediate to experienced DSLR camera users. (Bring Tripod & zoom/close-up lenses.)

A23 – 4:30 pm – SOCIAL.  5:30 pm – BANQUET & PRESENTATION – BIRDS & SOME OF THEIR MYSTERIES – David Lamble.

David is no ordinary bird lover.  He will talk about bird intelligence – bird vision and his passion, bird banding, and how they all contribute to our understanding of birds.  (St. Joseph’s Parish Hall, Port Elgin, Chicken Buffet, Harrigan’s Catering) (Early bird price – $35 extra per person; after April 15 or for banquet/presentation only – $45 extra per person)  Casual. Bar available. Pre-registration required. Silent auction. Contact registrar by May 1 with dietary restrictions.  (

SUNDAY MAY 25

A24 – 7:00 am – FLOWERPOT ISLAND – A REMOTE GEORGIAN BAY HABITAT – Don Wilkes.

This excursion will take you to one of Canada’s remarkable islands, famous for its rock flowerpots, caves and rare orchids.  Water birds and late migrants may be seen.  If Georgian Bay is too rough, a mainland tour will focus on the national park escarpment shore near Cyprus Lake.  (Difficult, car-pool, jet boat, bring backpack & lunch) ($45 extra per person – includes National Park admission)

A25 – 7:00 am – HIDDEN TREASURES OF THE HURON COAST – Peter Middleton.

This outing will explore Lake Huron coastlines, both present and past, north of Sauble Falls.  You will visit Ontario Nature’s oldest reserve, Petrel Point, and their newest, Sauble Dunes.  (Moderate, car-pool, bring lunch, sturdy footwear)

A28 – 8:00 am – UP WITH THE BIRDS – Doug Martin.

Continue the tradition that pre-dates the birding festival with this morning walk along the Tower Trail to the Ducks Unlimited pond and the viewing tower.

A29 – 8:30 am – THE LONGEST, SHORTEST WALK YOU WILL EVER TAKE – Richard & Andalyne Tofflemire.

It’s more than just identifying what you see.  We will focus on how birds and bugs interact with each other.  But don’t expect to cover a lot of distance because there’s so much to see right at your feet and above your head!

A30 – 1:30 pm – NATURE RAMBLE – MacGREGOR POINT SOUTH – Norah Toth.

Norah will take you to one of her favourite areas in MacGregor Point.  Wildflowers and birds seen along the route will be highlighted.

A31 – 1:30 pm – NATURE RAMBLE – OLD SHORE ROAD TRAIL – John Reaume.

A leisurely walk along the Old Shore Road Trail near the Visitor Centre.  Plants, flowers, dragonflies, birds – let’s see what we find.

A33 – 1:30 pm – FUN, FROG FROLIC AT MacGREGOR POINT – Kerry Jarvis.

Join Kerry on this fun frog frolic to listen to, locate and observe several species of frog and the American Toad at MacGregor Point.  (If you have them, bring camera and close-up binoculars.) 

A34 – 7:15 pm – THE PLIGHT OF THE BUMBLEBEE – Sheila Colla.

Come learn about the status of Canadian bumblebees and what you can do to help wild populations of these important native pollinators.  Tools for identification to species level and a new Citizen Science project will also be discussed.  (Indoors)

MONDAY MAY 26

A37 – 1:30 pm – BOTANY & BIRDING IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Doug Pedwell.

We will be observing a variety of ecosystems including forest, escarpment, rocky shorelines, marshes, lakes, sandy shorelines, and pasturelands.  (Bring lunch, snacks and water. This all day event returns by 8:45 pm.)

A38 – 6:30 am – BIRDING THE PERIPHERY OF THE PARK – Mike Burrell.

Grab your binoculars AND notebooks!  While we are out enjoying the birds we will also be contributing to one of the biggest Citizen Science projects ever – eBird.  After the hike we’ll have a quick demo of how simple it is to really make your observations count.

A39 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – James Turland.

Walk the Tower Trail from the park road to the Ducks Unlimited pond.  Habitat is a mixture of wetlands and hardwood forests.

A40 – 1:30 pm – NATURE RAMBLE – OLD SHORE ROAD TRAIL – Laura Cook.

Laura will take you along one of her favourite trails in MacGregor Point.  Wildflowers, insects and birds seen along the route will be highlighted.

A42 – 7:15 pm – IMPORTANT BIRD AREAS – Mike Burrell.

Come hear about some of Ontario’s most important sites for bird conservation and how your help can make a difference on a global scale.

A43 – 9:00 pm – AN EVENING OF ASTRONOMY – THE NIGHT SKY – John Hlynialuk & Bluewater Astronomical Society.

John will take you on a tour through the deep reaches of the universe.  Program will feature astronomical highlights of 2014 as well as Saturn, Mars and more distant objects like nebula, clusters and galaxies. Outdoor viewing through telescopes is weather permitting.  (Indoors/outdoors)

THURSDAY MAY 29

B2 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE HURON FRINGE NORTH – James Turland.

Huron Fringe refers to the sand and gravel lowlands adjacent to Lake Huron.  This driving tour explores the fringe between MacGregor Point and Sauble Falls to the north. (Bring lunch)

B3 – 7:30 am – TIPS & TECHNIQUES ON PHOTOGRAPHING WATERFALLS – Kerry Jarvis.

Participants will get an opportunity to capture several local waterfalls by experimenting with a variety of photographic techniques.  (Bring lunch – Intermediate to experienced DSLR camera users. Bring tripod & zoom/close-up lenses.)

B4 – 7:30 am – DOWN & DIRTY – WILDFLOWER PHOTOGRAPHY – Doug Pedwell.

Participants will take their cameras and equipment to photograph wildflowers at a variety of locations in the park.

B5 – 1:30 pm – BOTANY OF THE “FRINGE” – Barbara Palmer.

Many unique shoreline plants, including Dwarf Lake Iris, are found in MacGregor Point.  Barbara will help you learn to identify them.

B6 – 1:30 pm – TREE & SHRUB IDENTIFICATION – Bob Gray.

Take a leisurely walk in the interior of the park to identify trees and shrubs and to see how species associate with different site types.

B7 -7:15 pm – ONTARIO’S BIRD SURVEYS – WHAT ARE THEY TELLING US? – Mike Cadman.

Citizen scientists provide a wealth of data on the size and trends of Ontario’s bird populations.  This presentation will outline surveys, methods and findings.  Special attention will be given to the decline of aerial insectivores (swallows, swifts, nightjars).  (Indoors)

FRIDAY MAY 30

B8 – 6:00 am – CABOT HEAD/DYER’S BAY – A BIRDING AREA OF IMPORTANCE – Rod Steinacher.
Visit some of the Peninsula’s best-known birding spots, such as Dyer’s Bay, the sparrow fields near Larkwhistle and Crane Lake.  You will have the opportunity to observe migration monitoring and bird banding at the Cabot Head Research Station.  (Bring lunch)

B10 – 6:45 am – NATURE & LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY IN SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Doug Pedwell.

We will photograph some of the unique plants and rugged landscapes that the Niagara Escarpment has created. (Difficult, car-pool, bring lunch. Bring DSLR camera & accessories.)

B11 – 6:00 am – IS IT A BIRD OR YOUR MNEMONIC? – Michael Carlson.

A field workshop on how to listen to and identify bird vocalization.  Michael will use the Tower Trail where you will listen for orioles, woodpeckers, warblers, flycatchers and waterfowl.  (Car-pool, for experienced birders only)

B12 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE MacGREGOR BOUNDARY – Mike Cadman.

Join Mike as he visits some hot spots including the Day Use beach, the Park Office, the old cottage entry road and along the Townline.

B13 – 1:30 pm – WILDFLOWERS: HISTORICAL FACTS & FICTION – Heather Starrs. 

Legends and superstitions are attached to many common, and not so common, plants found at MacGregor Point.  Heather’s walk will introduce you to some plants’ stories.  (Easy) (Limit 20)

B14 – 1:30 pm – ROADSIDE BOTANY RAMBLE – Larry Lamb.

Explore various roadside habitats in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre.  Learn to use identification keys and Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide (Bring yours along!).

B16 – 7:15 pm – A FLING WITH SHOREBIRDS: BILLS, BREASTS & A LITTLE TAIL – Mark Peck.

For many birders, shorebirds can be notoriously difficult to identify.  Join in the fun as we look at the important characteristics that help simplify common Ontario shorebirds.  (Indoors)

SATURDAY MAY 31

B17 – 6:00 am – BIG DAY ON THE BRUCE – Michael Carlson.

Are you ready for a full day of birding?  If so, you won’t want to miss this morning to night birding marathon on the Bruce Peninsula.  (Easy, car-pool; bring lunch, snacks and a walking dinner.)

B18 – 7:30 am – SECRETS OF THE GEORGIAN BAY FORMATION – Bob Gray.

This daylong excursion will explore several hidden features of the Niagara Escarpment.  Bob will share theories about how these features were formed. (Difficult, car-pool, bring lunch.)

B19 – 7:00 am – ROAD BIRDING FOR GRASSLAND BIRDS – Brett Woodman.

Tour the local countryside looking for the elusive nesting grassland birds of Saugeen Shores.

B20 – 7:30 am – BIRDING BY NEST – Mark Peck.

Learn how to locate, identify and record nesting information for the Ontario Nest Records Scheme.

B21 – 8:00 am – BIRDING MacGREGOR – OLD FIELDS & TRAILS – James Turland.

A morning walk through varied habitats along the Deer Run and Rotary Way trails in the northeast corner of the Park. These are infrequently birded areas.

B22 – 9:00 am – DYNAMIC DIGITAL CAMERA TIPS – Jennifer O’Reilly.

Great for beginner or intermediate photographers. Step by step instruction on how to take award-winning compositions using features on your camera! (Suitable for point-and-shoot or DSLR cameras.)

B23 – 1:30 pm – THE TALE OF THE PIPING PLOVER – Stewart Nutt.

Piping Plover behaviours including: courtship, feeding, life history, territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and/or explained during your time with these birds.  Become a ‘Plover Lover’.

B24 – 1:30 pm – WILDFLOWER DIVERSITY WITHIN THE FRINGE – Brett Woodman.

Here’s your chance to learn about and appreciate some of MacGregor Point’s varied wildflowers.  Brett will show you some of his favourite plants.

B25 – 1:30 pm – PLANT & WILDFLOWER RAMBLE – Larry Lamb.

Walk the trails and campground loops from the Day Use area to Pitcher Plant Marl.  Learn to use identification keys and Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide (bring yours along!).

B27 – 1:30 pm – ADVANCED DIGITAL CAMERA TECHNIQUES – Jennifer O’Reilly.

This workshop takes you out into the ‘field’ for hands on photography.  Learn pro techniques guaranteed to put the ‘wow’ factor into your photographs.  (Point-and-shoot or DSLR cameras.)

B28 -5:00 pm to 6:30 pm – BRUCE COUNTY BEEF DINNER – Harrigan’s Catering, Southampton. 

In MacGregor Point Provincial Park, additional charge of $17. Dinner combined with B29 as a single event $23. Pre-registration required.)

B29 – 7:15 pm – THE STRAIT OF GIBRALTAR: A BIRD MIGRATION HOTSPOT – Justin Peter.

Each autumn, millions of birds that breed in Europe will go to Africa to spend the winter.  In this illustrated talk, Justin will shed some light on the mysteries of bird migration across the Strait of Gibraltar and on his experiences there. (Indoors)

SUNDAY JUNE 1

B30 – 6:00 am – MALCOLM BLUFFS & CAPE CROKER – Alfred Raab.
Bird in a variety of habitats within the Cape Croker Peninsula and Malcolm Bluffs Nature Reserve. The cliffs above Colpoy’s Bay shoreline provide spectacular vistas

B32 -6:30 AM – BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Justin Peter.

Hike the Tower Trail and check the Ducks Unlimited pond from both the viewing tower and bird blind. Habitat is a mix of wetlands and hardwood forests.

B33 – 7:00 am – BIRDING THE PERIPHERY – James Turland.

Woodland, lakeshore, wetlands and abandoned fields are some of the habitats involved. (Easy, car-pool)

B34 – 8:00 am – SEARCHING FOR STRAGGLERS – MacGREGOR’S LATE MIGRANTS – Michael Carlson.

Join Michael as he searches select spots in MacGregor for breeding birds as well as late spring migrants, such as Yellow-bellied Flycatcher and Gray-cheeked Thrush.

B35 – 1:30 pm – EXPLORING KINGHURST FOREST – Tanya Pulfert & Catherine Jimenea.

Kinghurst Forest is a special place and Catherine and Tanya are keen to take you for a walk through this Ontario Nature property.  On this general nature walk you will be a Citizen Scientist and report your reptile and amphibian sightings.

B36 – 1:30 pm – FUN, FROG FROLIC AT MacGREGOR POINT – Kerry Jarvis.

Join Kerry on this fun frog frolic to listen to, locate and observe several species of frog and the American Toad at MacGregor Point. (If you have them, bring camera and close-up binoculars.)

B37 – 7:15 pm – SUNSET WALK – John Cummings.

The Lake Huron shoreline offers some of the most spectacular sunsets in the world.  What a wonderful way to enjoy a sunset with friends.

It won't be long now.

It won’t be long now.

REGISTER NOW. EVENTS ARE FILLING UP FAST.

http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org

Email: birdfest@rogers.com

http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

 https://twitter.com/fompp

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL  – MAY 23 to MAY 26 – MAY 29 tor JUNE 1 -2014

MACGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK – PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

Searching for the Rusty-Patched Bumble Bee

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Currently, Dr. Sheila Colla, Co-author of A Guide to the Bumblebees of North America is a Project Leader at Wildlife Preservation Canada looking to bring the Rusty-patched bumblebee and other at-risk pollinators back from the brink of extinction.

She is also a first-time event leader at HFBF bringing her special expertise highlighting the plight of bees that we are all aware of today.

sheila_colla1

Photo courtesy Johanna James-Heinz

Her work involves looking for extant populations of declining species and working with Citizen Scientists, Parks Employees and Landowners to gather data to produce a conservation management plan.

A recent article in the Walrus (http://thewalrus.ca/fight-of-the-bumblebee/) would be one of the best places to get a true sense of her commitment to helping the wild populations of these important native pollinators.

Sheila has also posted a number of blogs on Wildlife Preservation Canada that you will also find interesting:

http://wildlifepreservation.ca/blog/found-bumblebee-diversity/

http://wildlifepreservation.ca/blog/pollinators-in-peril-2/

Her “Meet the Bees” field trip is now full. But you can still sign up for A34 -THE PLIGHT OF THE BUMBLEBEE at 7:15 PM on Sunday May 25. It’s an evening presentation where Sheila will talk about the status of Canadian bumblebees and show you tools for identification to species level. A new Citizen Science project will also be discussed.

Sheila has an Honours Bachelor of Zoology from the University of Toronto, and completed her Ph.D. in Biology at York University. She began working with native pollinators in 2004 as a research assistant to Dr. James Thomson. During her undergraduate degree she was involved in projects observing pollinator foraging behaviour and evolutionary ecology. Her honours thesis documented the spillover of diseases from managed bumblebees to native bumblebees in southern Ontario. Her Ph.D. work focused on assessing the conservation status and ecological requirements for eastern North American bumblebees. This work was the first quantitative study documenting the decline of native bumblebees in the region and lead to the Rusty-patched Bumblebee being listed as Endangered in Canada and in Ontario. Additional projects in collaboration with universities and museum in Canada, USA, UK and China have assessed the status of native species and looked more deeply into possible causes for decline. Her research has been featured on Quirks & Quarks, Discovery Channel’s the Daily Planet, the Washington Post, and David Suzuki’s Nature of Things.

In addition to scientific research, Sheila has been actively working on outreach, education and advocacy with regards to pollinator conservation, ecosystem services and sustainable agriculture.  She has worked with numerous NGOs and government agencies including Pollinator Partnership, Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, USDA-Forest Service, FAO, Canadian Wildlife Service, OMNR and Natureserve. She is currently the North American Coordinator (with Dr. Robbin Thorp) of the IUCN SSC Bumblebee Specialist Group, which aims to use IUCN criteria to assess the status of wild bumblebees worldwide.

If you want to stay on top of the Plight of the Bumble Bee, WPC recently launched bumblebeewatch.org. It’s an interactive site that gives you an e-newsletter, tells you how to report bee sightings and so much more.

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REGISTER NOW AT:  http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org  

for A34 -THE PLIGHT OF THE BUMBLEBEE at 7:15 PM, Sunday May 25.

Email: birdfest@rogers.com

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL  – MAY 23 to MAY 26  & MAY 29 to JUNE 1

MCGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK, PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

New Facebook Page:

http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

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