huronfringefest

One of Canada's Premier Birding and Nature Festivals

Posts Tagged ‘Friends of MacGregor

THE EARLY BIRD…GETS THE EVENT THEY WANT!

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 Big Bird

ELEVEN EVENTS ARE SOLD OUT AS OF THIS POSTING. SOME HAVE ONLY A FEW SPACES LEFT BEFORE THEY’RE FULL. CHECK OUT OUR SCHEDULE NOW AND DECIDE WHICH EVENTS YOU WANT TO ATTEND, THEN LOG ON TO:

http://www.huronfringebirdingfestival.ca TO CAPTURE YOUR PLACES ON THE EVENTS YOU WANT. WHILE MAY 27 IS A FAIR WAYS AWAY IT MORE SATISFYING TO BE AN EARLY BIRD

FRIDAY MAY 27                                                               

All Day

FULL – A1 6:00 am BIRDING THE 45TH PARALLEL – Michael Carlson – Bruce Road 9 is known as the 45th Parallel Road. Michael will bird the Bruce Peninsula from coast to coast – Lake Huron to Georgian Bay up to this latitude. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

FULL – A2 6:00 am BRUCE BACKCOUNTRY BIRDING – John Haselmayer – Visit the upper Peninsula’s best known birding spots such as Dyer’s Bay, Cabot Head, the sparrow fields and Crane Lake. This outing combines great birding and outstanding scenery. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A3 8:00 am NORTH OF THE SAUGEEN – Joy Albrecht – Explore the backroads north of the Saugeen River. You will travel through the Chippewas of Saugeen Ojibway territory and inland habitats at the base of the Bruce Peninsula. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

A4 6:30 am KINCARDINE LAGOONS – James Turland – Hike the trails of this premier birding hotspot, locally known as “Pelee North”. If you missed seeing birds at Pelee, chances are you’ll find them here. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A5 7:30 am BIRDING THE EDGE OF MacGREGOR – Terry Crabe – The MacGregor landscape offers a variety of habitats that provide the right niches for a good number of different species. Travelling by car to these areas, we will seek them out on short walks into each habitat. (easy,car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

A6 (NEW) 1:30 pm LET THERE BE LIGHT – Fran Sanagan – Learn how lighting influences your photographs. In this workshop, you will learn a variety of natural lighting techniques, and how to get the most out of outdoor flash photography. There will be an opportunity to share your photos and discuss the results. (easy) (limit15)

A7 1:30 pm ARE YOU A PLOVER LOVER? – Stew Nutt – If you’re not already, you will be after spending time on the beach with these charismatic, endangered birds. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A8 1:30 pm SHRUB & TREE ID IN MacGREGOR – Jim Coles – Using leaf and twig keys, we will identify the conifers and hardwoods in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre and learn about the role of site (soil characteristics) in determining species composition. (easy) (limit 20)

Evening

FULL – A9 (NEW) 7:15 pm BIRDING BY IMPRESSION & ALL THAT JIZZ – Fred Jazvac – Join Fred for his annual Festival kickoff ‘tips and techniques’ presentation. We all bird by JIZZ (birding by impression, GISS, right-brain birding, holistic birding, gestalt birding). Explore insights into how using impression applies to bird identification. (indoors) (limit 60)

FULL – A10 (NEW) 8:15 pm SUNSET AT THE HURON SHORE – Willy Waterton – Most people go inside after the sun sets but this is when some of the most stunning light occurs. This workshop will give you tips on taking images of the setting sun and twilight using your smartphone to DSLR. If you have a tripod, bring it along. (moderate, hiking along shore, car-pool, bring compact and/or digital SLR) (limit 12)

SATURDAY MAY 28

All Day

A11 6:00 am HURON SHORES TO MALCOLM BLUFFS – Mike Burrell – We’ll cover all the birding bases – shorebirds, ducks, grassland birds and forest birds. You’ll be amazed at the diversity. We may even find a Cerulean or Hooded Warbler on territory. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A12 7:00 am INVERHURON BIRDING & BOTANY – Dr. Scott Taylor – Inverhuron Provincial Park may be small, but the diversity of habitat and its shoreline location make it an excellent place to look for songbirds and unique plants. Join us for this exploration of the forest and shoreline habitats. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A13 (NEW) 9:00 am MONARCH FRIENDLY HABITAT – Audrey Armstrong – Learn how to nurture monarch butterfly populations by growing your own easy to maintain monarch waystation garden. Following a slide show in the morning, the afternoon will be outdoors, making seed balls, looking for monarchs, eggs and larvae along the Lake Huron shore and visiting local way stations. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

A14 6:00 am BIRDING BY EAR – Michael Carlson – Do you have difficulty remembering bird songs and calls no matter how often you hear them? Michael is a natural at mnemonics. This field workshop will give you tips and tools you can use to sort out bird songs. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A15 6:00 am SEX & THE SINGLE WARBLER – Mark Wiercinski – In spring, love is in the air. Let Mark explain the unseen action in the trees. It’s always fun when Mark tackles this topic. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A16 6:30 am BIRDING THE 4 CORNERS OF MacGREGOR – James Turland – Visit wetlands, shorelines, forests and fields along the margins of MacGregor Park. You will enjoy James’ relaxed style and his ability to locate the birds. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)A17 7:00 am BIRDING THE EDGE – Todd Pepper – Back by popular request, Todd will bird the Lake Huron shoreline along the Old Shore Road Trail. He will lead us through habitats including fens, forests and wet beaches. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A18 7:30 am PAISLEY BIRDING – Joy Albrecht – Join Joy birding the back roads from MacGregor to Paisley, with a stop at the Old Mill, Schmidt Lake and some roadside birding in the swamp on the way back to the Park. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

11:00 am EAGLE OPTICS – During the lunch break Eagle Optics will have binoculars and telescopes on display and for sale.

Afternoon 

A19 (NEW) 1:30 pm ETHICS OF BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY – Terry Crabe – The Tower Trail provides many opportunities to view birds but what are the challenges for the casual or professional photographer who wants to get the best shot. A birder and photographer, Terry will share the principles he follows. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

FULL – A20 – 1:30 pm AROUND THE EDGE OF MacGREGOR – Ken Burrell – Ken is among the top birders in Ontario. With Ken leading, you may be surprised at the birds you can find on a lazy afternoon. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A21 1:30 pm BIRDING BRUCEDALE TO MacGREGOR – Joy Albrecht – Wooded and open areas beside the shore from Brucedale Conservation Area to MacGregor Point’s Koehler Pasch property provide great birding opportunities. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A22 1:30 pm FROG FROLIC – Kerry Jarvis – Listen to, enjoy and locate the frogs who call MacGregor Park home. Our frolic will take us to several ponds to revel in the sights and sounds of these amazing creatures. If available, bring cameras and close-focus binoculars. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Evening

A23 4:30 pm SOCIAL 5:30 pm BANQUET & PRESENTATIONLust & Domain: An Exploration into Why Birds Sing – Dr. Lyle Friesen – Recent advances in the field of bioacoustics have revealed that birds communicate in highly sophisticated ways. The mysteries of the dawn chorus, a sublime avian phenomenon, will be highlighted. Champion singers, those with the most complex songs, the largest repertoire or that are marathon singers, will be identified. (St. Joseph’s Parish Hall, Port Elgin, Roast Beef Buffet, vegetarian option available). (Early Bird Price $40 extra per person – after April 15 or for banquet/presentation only $50 extra per person). Casual, bar available, pre-registration required, silent auction. Contact registrar by May 1 with dietary restrictions. (limit 110)

SUNDAY MAY 29

All Day

A24 6:00 am BIG DAY ON THE BRUCE – Michael Carlson – Are you a lister? Do you tick? From warblers at dawn to Whip-poor-will at dusk, you will keep tallying up your numbers. Your day’s list could be over 100 species. (moderate, car-pool, bring lunch & walking supper) (limit 20)

A25 6:00 am FLOWERPOT ISLAND – Doug Pedwell – An exhilarating open-air jet boat will take you from Tobermory to the showcase island of Fathom Five National Marine Park. Flowerpot Island is famous for shoreline flowerpots, perched caves, rare orchids and birdwatching. If Lake Huron is too rough, a Tip of the Bruce tour will be an equally worthy substitute! (difficult, car-pool, jet boat, bring backpack & lunch) ($45 extra per person) (limit 22)

A26 (NEW) 6:30 am WILDFLOWER WALK – Nature Conservancy of Canada Staff – Experience a section of a recently secured 1000 acre NCC property near the Johnson Harbour Road. You will see an array of wildflowers, many of which are rare elsewhere in Southern Ontario. (moderate, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A27 7:30 am BIRDING SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Todd Pepper – The southern Bruce Peninsula boasts a number of landform features found both within the Huron Fringe and along the Niagara Escarpment, providing a variety of bird habitat. Participants will benefit from Todd’s knowledge of birdsong and breeding bird behaviour. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

A28 6:00 am WRESTLING WITH WARBLERS – Mark Wiercinski – Warblers are very annoying. They move around a lot and hide behind the most inconvenient leaves and branches. Mark’s humour and tips about habitat and song will definitely keep you interested. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

FULL – A29 6:30 am BIRDING BEYOND THE J/I LINE – Ken Burrell – The Burrell brothers rank among the top birders in Ontario. Take your pick of either expert for a great morning of birding. Join Ken on a driving tour which will focus on the threatened and declining birds of the grasslands in nearby Bruce County. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A30 7:00 am eBIRDING THE PARK – Mike Burrell – Mike will take you birding, then introduce you to eBird, the amazing online repository of bird sightings, abundance, distribution and seasonal occurrence. You’ll find out how easy it is for you to become a citizen scientist and contribute your sightings to this awesome database. (easy) (limit 20)

FULL – A31 – 8:00 am UP WITH THE BIRDS – Doug Martin – This hike takes you on a not-so-early morning walk along the Tower Trail to the Viewing Tower. Past experience on this event has resulted in a species list that will rival many other events. Can we do it again? (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

FULL – A32 1:30 pm BIRDING & BIRD RESEARCH – Dr. Scott Taylor – Join Scott in a walk to the Ducks Unlimited wetland and hear about some of his research projects at Cornell while looking for late migrants and resident birds settling in to nest. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A33 1:30 pm DRAGONFLIES & DAMSELFLIES – John Reaume – Damselflies and dragonflies are members of the order Odonata meaning “toothed ones” which reference their awesome mouth parts. We will attempt to capture some of them in butterfly nets for closer examination. (easy, car-pool, bring binoculars/cameras/butterfly nets/field guides if you have them) (limit 20)

A34 (NEW)1:30 pm SAUGEEN SHORES BUTTERFLY TRAIL – Kerry Jarvis – Want to know the best plants, trees and shrubs to attract wildlife? Join Kerry as he showcases various gardens throughout Saugeen Shores. Learn about the “magic plants” that are magnets for birds, butterflies, caterpillars and mammals. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A35 1:30 pm SONGBIRDS & SALAMANDERS ON THE FARM – Art Wiebe & Janice McKean – All living things need water to survive. Let Art and Janice introduce you to their backyard pond as they explain “natural habitat” and what it means to migrating birds, and the little critters who call it home. They will also talk about conservation programs that have assisted them in enriching these habitats. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Evening

A36 (NEW) 7:15 pm SPIDERS OF EASTERN NORTH AMERICA – John Reaume – Spiders have a bad reputation but in reality they are fascinating creatures. John will talk about their unique anatomy and interesting behaviours. Webs are not just for catching prey! Learn how to observe them. Understanding spiders will make you appreciate them more – it’s true! (indoors) (limit 60)

MONDAY MAY 30

All Day

A37 6:00 am HOTSPOTS OF THE LOWER BRUCE – Alfred Raab – Habitats will be varied on this outing. We will visit Sauble Beach for a chance to see Piping Plover; inland lakes including Boat, Isaac and Sky lakes; grasslands around Ferndale and Black Creek Provincial Park. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A38 8:00 am THE BRUCE RE-BECKONS – Willy Waterton – Join Willy in a quest to rediscover Sherwood Fox’s Bruce Peninsula, based on his landmark 1952 book The “The Bruce Beckons”. You will spend the day exploring Fox’s Bruce to see what still exists after 63 years. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

FULL – A39 – 6:30 am BACKROADS OF SAUGEEN – James Turland – Saugeen’s rural landscapes are a peaceful backdrop for Bobolinks and other grassland birds. This is James’ back yard and he is one of our favourite local leaders. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A40 7:30 am BIRDING IN AN AMPHITHEATREJoy Albrecht – The elevated steps of the Saugeen amphitheatre provide viewpoints over the river and riparian habitat. Here you will get a bird’s-eye view. (moderate, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

FULL – A41 1:30 pm RIVER WALK – Marshall Byle – Enjoy a walk through beautiful habitats ranging from cedars to mixed hardwood, all the while following a trout stream. Observe spawning rainbows and spring migrants including Scarlet Tanagers and warblers. (moderate, car-pool) (limit 20)

A42 1:30 pm DOWN & DIRTY PHOTOGRAPHY – Doug Pedwell – Participants will explore through photography the wildflowers growing along the Old Shore Road Trail. All types of cameras welcome. Be prepared to get down and dirty. (easy, car-pool, bring camera) (limit 15)

Evening

A43 (NEW) 7:15 pm WHAT’S THE FLAP ALL ABOUT? – Paloma Plant – The Fatal Light Awareness Program is sustained by a terrific group of volunteers. FLAP was the first organization in the world to raise concerns about bird collisions. They have instigated many changes to building design and lighting in urban areas. (indoors) (limit 60)

THURSDAY JUNE 2

 

Our second weekend features two separate trips to Chantry Island for an afternoon of birding and a lighthouse tour.

Our second weekend features two separate trips to Chantry Island for an afternoon of birding and a tour of the lighthouse and historic keeper’s cottage..

All Day

ONE SPOT LEFT – B1 6:00 am MALCOLM BLUFFS & AREA BIRDING – Alfred Rabb – Bird in a variety of habitats within the Malcolm Bluffs Nature Reserve and area. The soaring Escarpment cliffs provide spectacular vistas of Colpoys Bay. (moderate, carpool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B2 (NEW) 8:00 am MORE OF THE BRUCE RE-BECKONS – Willy Waterton – Join Willy in a continuing quest to rediscover Sherwood Fox’s Bruce Peninsula, based on his landmark 1952 book “The Bruce Beckons”. You will spend the day hiking and exploring Fox’s Bruce to see what still exists after 63 years. This trip involves more hiking than A38. (difficult, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

B3 6:30 am BIRDING KINCARDINE & AREA – James Turland – Hike the trails of Kincardine’s premier birding hotspot, locally known as “Pelee North”. You will see a variety of warblers, ducks and other migrants. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B4 8:30 am THE BIG SIT – Margaret Anderton – Join Margaret to see what can be seen from the comfort of a sitting position overlooking a pond, a field, forest and feeders. (easy, car-pool, bring a lawnchair) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B5 1:30 pm BOTANY OF THE FRINGE – Barbara Palmer – The Huron Fringe is a physiographic unit between the former glacial Lake Algonquin shoreline and the present day Lake Huron shoreline. Former cobble beach ridges, swales and ancient miniature dunes each provide their own combination of plants. (easy) (limit 12)

B6 (NEW)1:30 pm WHAT’S YOUR QUESTION? – Fran Sanagan – Bring your photographic questions to Fran. With his many years of experience, he will offer insights into how to get the photos you’re after. From raw images to photo editing, Fran can help you improve your technique with his tips of the trade. (easy) (limit15)

Evening

B7 (NEW) 7:15 pm TICK TALK: LYME DISEASE IN ONTARIO – Dr. Andrew Peregrine – Lyme disease is an infection that primarily occurs in wildlife. However, infections also occur in people. This talk will review current information on the importance of identifying Lyme disease in wildlife and people across Ontario. Practices to prevent infection in people and pets will also be discussed. (indoors) (limit 60)

FRIDAY JUNE 3

All Day

FULL – B8 (NEW) 6:00 am BIRDING NEYAASHIINIGMIING – Jarmo Jalava & Anthony Chegahno – Blending Aniishinaabe culture and traditions with the many interesting ecosystems found in Neyaashiinigmiing (Cape Croker) will be the highlight of this all day trip. This is the height of the breeding season and we will definitely find birds singing on territory. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B9 6:30 am BIRDING SOUTH BRUCE – Marshall Byle – This is car birding at its best. We will follow a scenic route in Southern Bruce County, stopping to bird various habitats. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B10 7:30 am A GEOLOGICAL JOURNEY – Bob Gray – Join Bob in exploring spectacular caves, deep gorges and a scenic broad glacial re-entrant valley along the Niagara Escarpment in eastern Grey County. (difficult, car pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

B11 6:30 am BIRDING THE 4 CORNERS OF MacGREGOR – James Turland – Visit wetlands, shorelines, forests and fields along the margins of MacGregor Park. You will enjoy James’ relaxed style and his ability to locate the birds. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B12 7:00 am BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Ellen Smout – Join Ellen as she leads us along the Tower Trail, a favourite spot for local birders. We will see species that will nest in the boreal forest. We will scope the wetland from the observation tower and dyke. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B13 (NEW) 1:00 pm CHANTRY ISLAND – Marine Heritage Society – Chantry Island, an international Important Bird Area, offers protection of colonial nesting species such as egrets, herons, gulls and cormorants. This boat trip includes a tour of the lighthouse and historic keeper’s cottage. (moderate, flip-flops not permitted, weather permitting, car-pool leaves the Park at 12:15 pm, $30 per person to be paid at the dock) (limit 9)

B14 1:30 pm WOULDN’T IT BE PLOVERLY – Stewart Nutt – Join Stew to visit endangered Piping Plovers at one of their few nesting sites in Ontario. You may observe courtship (Plovers) as well as other behaviours and learn about the many perils these birds face. You will find out how local involvement is helping this species recover. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B15 (NEW) 3:00 pm CHANTRY ISLAND – Marine Heritage Society – Chantry Island, an international Important Bird Area, offers protection of colonial nesting species such as egrets, herons, gulls and cormorants. This boat trip includes a tour of the lighthouse and historic keeper’s cottage. (moderate, flip-flops not permitted, weather permitting, car-pool leaves the Park at 2:15 pm, $30 per person to be paid at the dock) (limit 9)

B16 1:30 pm SAUGEEN SHORES: WATERSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY – Kerry Jarvis – Saugeen Shores is a treasure chest for photographers. Learn photographic waterscape techniques to enhance your photography skills and discover some of the majestic vistas in Saugeen Shores. (easy, car-pool, bring camera/accessories) (limit 15)

Evening

B17 (NEW) 7:15 pm SPARROWS – Rupert – Do little brown jobs have your head spinning? Join Sarah for a light-hearted presentation on sparrow identification. She’ll break the sparrows down into small groups, give you tips and tricks to figure out one of the more challenging groups of birds and show you some imposters that are often confused for sparrows. (indoors) (limit 60)

SATURDAY JUNE 4

All Day

B18 6:30 am BIRDING THE BEYOND – Mark Peck – Mark will travel backroads and byways beyond the Park boundaries searching for various habitats and their niche birds. Knowing Mark, an expert on “nidiology”, you’ll find a nest or two also. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B19 7:00 am BIRDING THE HURON FRINGE – James Turland – A visit to Inverhuron Provincial Park and the Lake Huron shoreline will provide dune grassland as well as edge and shoreline habitats. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B20 (NEW) 8:00 am BEACHES & BIRDS – Karen Alexander – During this shoreline tour of varied coastal areas north of Sauble Beach, Karen will describe how different types of beach stewardship can influence the health and quality of coastal ecosystems. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

B21 6:30 am BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Justin Peter – Diverse habitat along the Tower Trail makes it a mecca for an eclectic mix of warblers, flycatchers, thrushes and more. Justin will help us find these birds by sight (and sound!) and will share tips about bird behaviour. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B22 7:00 am ROAD BIRDING FOR GRASSLAND SPECIES – Brett Woodman – Tour the local countryside looking for elusive nesting grassland birds of Saugeen Shores. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B23 7:30 am BIRDING HIDDEN SPOTS OF MacGREGOR – Ellen Smout – Travel some of the lesser known areas in the park looking for hidden gems. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B24 8:00 am BEGINNING BIRDING FOR ADULTS – Doug Pedwell – This event is for those who wish to learn about the world’s number one hobby – birding. Topics include binoculars, field guides and apps, identification marks of birds and eBird. (easy, indoor/outdoor, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B25 1:30 pm A BIT BAFFLED BY BOTANY? – Dr. Bill Crins – “Sedges have edges, rushes are round and grasses are hollow right up from the ground.” Bill helped compile the plant list for MacGregor Park; he can provide you with tips on how to identify any plant, including his specialty, sedges, and open your eyes to a whole new world on the forest floor. (easy, car-pool) (limit 12)

B26 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. (easy, car-pool) (limit 12)

B27 1:30 pm FIELD SKETCHING &/or JOURNALING – Sarah Rupert – Field sketching helps you hone your identification skills. Everyone can do it. Sarah will show you how sketching can help you document your observations in the field. (easy, bring pencil & notebook) (limit 20)

B28 1:30 pm BLUEBIRD LANDLORDS – Dennis & Gwen Lewington – Bluebirds are cavity nesters and natural cavities are not very abundant. Dennis and Gwen will take you on their “Bluebird Trail” which they have been maintaining and monitoring for over 32 years. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B29 1:30 pm ARE YOU A PLOVER LOVER? – Stew Nutt – If you’re not already, you will be after spending time on the beach with these charismatic, endangered birds. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Evening

B30 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm BRUCE COUNTY CHICKEN DINNER(MacGregor Point Provincial Park, additional charge of $17. Dinner combined with B31 as a single event $23. Pre-registration required) (limit 60)

B31 (NEW) 7:15 pm STORIES FROM THE SUBCONTINENT: A NATURALIST’S RAMBLES IN INDIA – Justin Peter – Justin has visited India several times and will share some of his experiences and observations during this illustrated talk. Visit some of India’s signature sites, see the countryside and people, and of course, some of its amazing wild things and places! (indoors) (limit 60)

ATTRACTING MOTHS – Andalyne Tofflemire – 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm

B32 9:15 pm STARRY STARRY NIGHT – John Hlynialuk – John will introduce you to the wonders of the night sky, and tell you about dark sky events for 2016. Weather permitting, members of the Bluewater Astronomical Society will have their telescopes available for viewing the evening sky. (easy, indoor, outdoor weather permitting) (limit 30)

SUNDAY JUNE 5

All Day

B33 6:00 am DEBATING THE ISSUES, & MORE, WITH MARK – Mark -Wiercinski This walking / driving tour travels between Bayview Escarpment and Bognor Marsh. Along the way, Mark will highlight issues affecting bird populations in Ontario. You will find out what this has to do with sex, which of course it does! (difficult, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B34 6:30 am WINGED PURSUITS – Nathan Miller – Join Nathan as he pursues the winged jewels of MacGregor Point Provincial Park and Bruce County. We will focus on finding birds during the morning and winged insects as the day warms up. All creatures found will be discussed. (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

7:00 am to 8:30 am MOTH ID – Andalyne Tofflemire

B35 7:00 am BIRDING THE PERIMETER OF THE PARK – Justin Peter – Driving the varied habitats along the edge of the park provides a mix of warblers, flycatchers and other possibilities. An opportunity to view wetlands and the shoreline will also enhance this outing. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B36 7:30 am BIRDING & BOTANIZING – Dr. Bill Crins – The Lake Huron shoreline, fen and edge habitats are featured during this walk from the Visitor Centre. We always benefit from Bill’s broad experience as an interpretive naturalist. (easy) (limit 20)

B37 8:00 am NEST QUEST – Mark Peck – On a leisurely walk in the park, you will take your love of birding to the next level. Find out how citizen scientists provide valuable conservation information while expanding their observation skills and learning about the nests of breeding birds. (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B38 1:30 pm SPEED, STRENGTH & STEALTH: ONTARIO’S RAPTORS – Wild Ontario – Ontario is home to some of the most amazing hunting birds on the planet! Come get nose-to-beak with these stunning predators, and learn about the incredible skills and abilities that help them do what they do. (outdoors)

B39 1:30 pm WITCHES & WILDFLOWERS – 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 stories about plants. (easy) (limit 20)

Evening

B40 8:00 pm SUNSET WALK – Doug Pedwell – Join Doug for a leisurely stroll along the shore of Lake Huron to discover the sights, sounds and scents of an early June evening in MacGregor Point Provincial Park. (easy) (limit 20)

The Huron Fringe Birding Festival uses online registration and payment at www.huronfringebirdingfestival.ca

Contact the registrar at birdfest@rogers.com or phone 519-389-6231 for contact information.

THE HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL IS ALSO A FAMILY AFFAIR

family

One parent/guardian must accompany children from the same family. This person is allowed to participate in the event free of charge. See the website for parent/guardian registration details.

SATURDAY JUNE 4

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

FAM1 9 am PLUGGING KIDS INTO BIRDING – Richard Tofflemire – Birding with kids can start right in your own backyard or in a provincial park! It is a family friendly activity. Learn about the equipment needed, field guides and apps and the easiest ways to identify birds. Bring binoculars if you have them, we will have some for you to use if you don’t. (limit 40)

Afternoon

FAM2 1:30 pm AFTERNOON ADVENTURES(Children will be divided into two groups. Each child will attend both afternoon programs.) (limit 40)

BINO BOY & ELYTRA GIRL – Andalyne & Richard Tofflemire – Everyone already has the superpowers they need to explore nature! Come out for a dynamic exploration of the forest and learn how much fun discovering nature can be.

and

MONARCH MADNESS – Audrey Armstrong – Not only are monarchs beautiful, but their life cycle and migration is amazing! In this hands-on interactive workshop, children will learn about monarchs and create really cool crafts. To help foster habitat for this Species at Risk, you will make “seed bombs” to take home.

Evening

FAM3 7:15 pm ANIMAL DEFENCES – CAMPFIRE PROGRAM – Park Staff – Join    Park Naturalists for an evening of deception, camouflage and chemical warfare as they investigate the defensive nature of MacGregor’s wild inhabitants. (outdoors)

9:00 pm to 10 pm ATTRACTING MOTHS BESIDE VISITOR CENTRE – Andalyne Tofflemire

SUNDAY JUNE 5

kids2

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

7:00 am to 8:30 am MOTH ID – Andalyne Tofflemire

FAM4 9:00 am MORNING EXPLORATIONS(Children will be divided into two groups. Each child will attend both morning programs.) (limit 40)

BUILDING FOR THE BIRDS – Kerry Jarvis – Get in the birding spirit. Build your own structure for a nest or wildlife feeder. No carpentry skills are required; just bring your enthusiasm! (kit – $10 extra per child. All tools provided.)

and

POND EXPLORATION – Andalyne & Richard Tofflemire – Join Richard and Andalyne for an informal, hands-on look at the fascinating critters that make the pond their home. Dip nets, basins and hand lenses will help us look at the often unseen animals that live in pond water.

Afternoon

FAM5 1:30 pm SPEED, STRENGTH & STEALTH: ONTARIO’S RAPTORS – Wild Ontario – Ontario is home to some of the most amazing hunting birds on the planet! Come get nose-to-beak with these stunning predators, and learn about the incredible skills and abilities that help them do what they do. (outdoors)

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The Huron Fringe Birding Festival is presented by the Huron Fringe Birding Festival Committee, the Friends of MacGregor Point and MacGregor Point Provincial Park. Festival headquarters are at MacGregor Point Provincial Park, located approximately five kilometres south of Port Elgin, Ontario on the shore of Lake Huron. The park address is: MacGregor Point Provincial Park, 1593 Bruce Road 33, Port Elgin, Ontario, Canada N0H 2C5. Registration inquiries: birdfest@rogers.com or 519-389-6231

Image 6The Friends of MacGregor Point Park present this Festival as one way to ensure the preservation of the natural legacy of MacGregor Point for future generations. The Huron Fringe Shop in the Visitor Centre provides 10% off “all things birds” during the Festival. For information about the Friends and events planned for 2016 visit their website www.friendsofmacgregor.org

 

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Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival.

twitter: @HuronBirdfest

 

HFBF 2016 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

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The Huron Fringe Birding Festival is just around the corner. So to help you pre-plan and get ready to reserve the events you want and avoid disappointed, here is the complete 2016 Schedule of Events.

Download it. Print it. Study it. Then get ready to register – online – at the stroke of midnight (if you wish) – February 1, 2016. The complete schedule is also available here

huronfringebirdingfestival.ca

huronfringebirdingfestival.com

huronfringebirdingfestival.org

hfbf.ca

 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

FRIDAY MAY 27                                                               

All Day

A1 6:00 am BIRDING THE 45TH PARALLEL – Michael Carlson

Bruce Road 9 is known as the 45th Parallel Road. Michael will bird the Bruce Peninsula from coast to coast – Lake Huron to Georgian Bay up to this latitude.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

 A2 6:00 am BRUCE BACKCOUNTRY BIRDING – John Haselmayer

Visit the upper Peninsula’s best known birding spots such as Dyer’s Bay, Cabot Head, the sparrow fields and Crane Lake. This outing combines great birding and outstanding scenery.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

 A3 8:00 am NORTH OF THE SAUGEEN – Joy Albrecht

Explore the backroads north of the Saugeen River. You will travel through the Chippewas of Saugeen Ojibway territory and inland habitats at the base of the Bruce Peninsula.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

A4 6:30 am KINCARDINE LAGOONS – James Turland

Hike the trails of this premier birding hotspot, locally known as “Pelee North”. If you missed seeing birds at Pelee, chances are you’ll find them here.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

 A5 7:30 am BIRDING THE EDGE OF MacGREGOR – Terry Crabe

The MacGregor landscape offers a variety of habitats that provide the right niches for a good number of different species. Travelling by car to these areas, we will seek them out on short walks into each habitat.  (easy,car-pool) (limit 20)

 Afternoon

A6 1:30 pm LET THERE BE LIGHT – Fran Sanagan

Learn how lighting influences your photographs. In this workshop, you will learn a variety of natural lighting techniques, and how to get the most out of outdoor flash photography. There will be an opportunity to share your photos and discuss the results.  (easy) (limit15)

 A7 1:30 pm ARE YOU A PLOVER LOVER? – Stew Nutt

If you’re not already, you will be after spending time on the beach with these charismatic, endangered birds.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

 A8 1:30 pm SHRUB & TREE ID IN MacGREGOR – Jim Coles

Using leaf and twig keys, we will identify the conifers and hardwoods in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre and learn about the role of site (soil characteristics) in determining species composition.  (easy) (limit 20)

Evening

A9 7:15 pm BIRDING BY IMPRESSION & ALL THAT JIZZ – Fred Jazvac

Join Fred for his annual Festival kickoff ‘tips and techniques’ presentation. We all bird by JIZZ (birding by impression, GISS, right-brain birding, holistic birding, gestalt birding). Explore insights into how using impression applies to bird identification.  (indoors) (limit 60)

 A10 8:15 pm SUNSET AT THE HURON SHORE – Willy Waterton

Most people go inside after the sun sets but this is when some of the most stunning light occurs. This workshop will give you tips on taking images of the setting sun and twilight using your smartphone to DSLR. If you have a tripod, bring it along.  (moderate, hiking along shore, car-pool, bring compact and/or digital SLR) (limit 12)

 SATURDAY MAY 28

 All Day (end by 3:30 pm)

A11 6:00 am HURON SHORES TO MALCOLM BLUFFS – Mike Burrell

We’ll cover all the birding bases – shorebirds, ducks, grassland birds and forest birds. You’ll be amazed at the diversity. We may even find a Cerulean or Hooded Warbler on territory.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A12 7:00 am INVERHURON BIRDING & BOTANY – Dr. Scott Taylor

Inverhuron Provincial Park may be small, but the diversity of habitat and its shoreline location make it an excellent place to look for songbirds and unique plants. Join us for this exploration of the forest and shoreline habitats.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A13 9:00 am MONARCH FRIENDLY HABITAT – Audrey Armstrong

Learn how to nurture monarch butterfly populations by growing your own easy to maintain monarch waystation garden. Following a slide show in the morning, the afternoon will be outdoors, making seed balls, looking for monarchs, eggs and larvae along the Lake Huron shore and visiting local waystations.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

A14 6:00 am BIRDING BY EAR – Michael Carlson

Do you have difficulty remembering bird songs and calls no matter how often you hear them? Michael is a natural at mnemonics. This field workshop will give you tips and tools you can use to sort out bird songs.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A15 6:00 am SEX & THE SINGLE WARBLER – Mark Wiercinski

In spring, love is in the air. Let Mark explain the unseen action in the trees. It’s always fun when Mark tackles this topic.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A16 6:30 am BIRDING THE 4 CORNERS OF MacGREGOR James Turland

Visit wetlands, shorelines, forests and fields along the margins of MacGregor Park. You will enjoy James’ relaxed style and his ability to locate the birds.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A17 7:00 am BIRDING THE EDGE – Todd Pepper

Back by popular request, Todd will bird the Lake Huron shoreline along the Old Shore Road Trail. He will lead us through habitats including fens, forests and wet beaches.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A18 7:30 am PAISLEY BIRDING – Joy Albrecht

Join Joy birding the back roads from MacGregor to Paisley, with a stop at the Old Mill, Schmidt Lake and some roadside birding in the swamp on the way back to the Park.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

11:00 am EAGLE OPTICS During the lunch break Eagle Optics will have binoculars and telescopes on display and for sale.

 Afternoon (end by 3:30 pm)

A19 1:30 pm ETHICS OF BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY – Terry Crabe

The Tower Trail provides many opportunities to view birds but what are the challenges for the c asual or professional photographer who wants to get the best shot. A birder and photographer, Terry will share the principles he follows.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A20 1:30 pm AROUND THE EDGE OF MacGREGOR – Ken Burrell

Ken is among the top birders in Ontario. With Ken leading, you may be surprised at the birds you can find on a lazy afternoon.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A21 1:30 pm BIRDING BRUCEDALE TO MacGREGOR – Joy Albrecht

Wooded and open areas beside the shore from Brucedale Conservation Area to MacGregor Point’s Koehler Pasch property provide great birding opportunities.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A22 1:30 pm FROG FROLIC – Kerry Jarvis

Listen to, enjoy and locate the frogs who call MacGregor Park home. Our frolic will take us to several ponds to revel in the sights and sounds of these amazing creatures. If available, bring cameras and close-focus binoculars.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)   

Evening

A23 4:30 pm SOCIAL 5:30 pm BANQUET & PRESENTATION – Lust & Domain: An Exploration into Why Birds Sing – Dr. Lyle Friesen – Recent advances in the field of bioacoustics have revealed that birds communicate in highly sophisticated ways. The mysteries of the dawn chorus, a sublime avian phenomenon, will be highlighted. Champion singers, those with the most complex songs, the largest repertoire or that are marathon singers, will be identified.  (St. Joseph’s Parish Hall, Port Elgin, Roast Beef Buffet, vegetarian option available). (Early Bird Price $40 extra per person – after April 15 or for banquet/presentation only $50 extra per person). Casual, bar available, pre-registration required, silent auction. Contact registrar by May 1 with dietary restrictions. (limit 110)

SUNDAY MAY 29                                                                                                                                                                            

All Day

A24 6:00 am BIG DAY ON THE BRUCE – Michael Carlson

Are you a lister? Do you tick? From warblers at dawn to Whip-poor-will at dusk, you will keep tallying up your numbers. Your day’s list could be over 100 species.  (moderate, car-pool, bring lunch & walking supper) (limit 20)

A25 6:00 am FLOWERPOT ISLAND – Doug Pedwell

An exhilarating open-air jet boat will take you from Tobermory to the showcase island of Fathom Five National Marine Park. Flowerpot Island is famous for shoreline flowerpots, perched caves, rare orchids and birdwatching. If Lake Huron is too rough, a Tip of the Bruce tour will be an equally worthy substitute!  (difficult, car-pool, jet boat, bring backpack & lunch) ($45 extra per person) (limit 22)

A26 6:30 am WILDFLOWER WALK – Nature Conservancy of Canada Staff

Experience a section of a recently secured 1000 acre NCC property near the Johnson Harbour Road. You will see an array of wildflowers, many of which are rare elsewhere in Southern Ontario. (moderate, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A27 7:30 am BIRDING SOUTH BRUCE PENINSULA – Todd Pepper

The southern Bruce Peninsula boasts a number of landform features found both within the Huron Fringe and along the Niagara Escarpment, providing a variety of bird habitat. Participants will benefit from Todd’s knowledge of birdsong and breeding bird behaviour.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

A28 6:00 am WRESTLING WITH WARBLERS – Mark Wiercinski

Warblers are very annoying. They move around a lot and hide behind the most inconvenient leaves and branches. Mark’s humour and tips about habitat and song will definitely keep you interested.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A29 6:30 am BIRDING BEYOND THE J/I LINE – Ken Burrell

The Burrell brothers rank among the top birders in Ontario. Take your pick of either expert for a great morning of birding. Join Ken on a driving tour which will focus on the threatened and declining birds of the grasslands in nearby Bruce County.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A30 7:00 am eBIRDING THE PARK – Mike Burrell

Mike will take you birding, then introduce you to eBird, the amazing online repository of bird sightings, abundance, distribution and seasonal occurrence. You’ll find out how easy it is for you to become a citizen scientist and contribute your sightings to this awesome database.  (easy) (limit 20)

A31 8:00 am UP WITH THE BIRDS – Doug Martin

This hike takes you on a not-so-early morning walk along the Tower Trail to the Viewing Tower. Past experience on this event has resulted in a species list that will rival many other events. Can we do it again?  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

A32 1:30 pm BIRDING & BIRD RESEARCH – Dr. Scott Taylor

Join Scott in a walk to the Ducks Unlimited wetland and hear about some of his research projects at Cornell while looking for late migrants and resident birds settling in to nest.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A33 1:30 pm DRAGONFLIES & DAMSELFLIES – John Reaume

Damselflies and dragonflies are members of the order Odonata meaning “toothed ones” which reference their awesome mouth parts. We will attempt to capture some of them in butterfly nets for closer examination.  (easy, car-pool, bring binoculars/cameras/butterfly nets/field guides if you have them) (limit 20)

A34 1:30 pm SAUGEEN SHORES BUTTERFLY TRAIL – Kerry Jarvis

Want to know the best plants, trees and shrubs to attract wildlife? Join Kerry as he showcases various gardens throughout Saugeen Shores. Learn about the “magic plants” that are magnets for birds, butterflies, caterpillars and mammals.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A35 1:30 pm SONGBIRDS & SALAMANDERS ON THE FARM – Art Wiebe & Janice McKean

All living things need water to survive. Let Art and Janice introduce you to their backyard pond as they explain “natural habitat” and what it means to migrating birds, and the little critters who call it home. They will also talk about conservation programs that have assisted them in enriching these habitats.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Evening

A36 7:15 pm SPIDERS OF EASTERN NORTH AMERICA – John Reaume

Spiders have a bad reputation but in reality they are fascinating creatures. John will talk about their unique anatomy and interesting behaviours. Webs are not just for catching prey! Learn how to observe them. Understanding spiders will make you appreciate them more – it’s true!  (indoors) (limit 60)

MONDAY MAY 30

All Day

A37 6:00 am HOTSPOTS OF THE LOWER BRUCE – Alfred Raab

Habitats will be varied on this outing. We will visit Sauble Beach for a chance to see Piping Plover; inland lakes including Boat, Isaac and Sky lakes; grasslands around Ferndale and Black Creek Provincial Park.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

A38 8:00 am THE BRUCE RE-BECKONS – Willy Waterton

Join Willy in a quest to rediscover Sherwood Fox’s Bruce Peninsula, based on his landmark 1952 book “The Bruce Beckons”. You will spend the day exploring Fox’s Bruce to see what still exists after 63 years.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

A39 6:30 am BACKROADS OF SAUGEEN – James Turland

Saugeen’s rural landscapes are a peaceful backdrop for Bobolinks and other grassland birds. This is James’ back yard and he is one of our favourite local leaders.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

A40 7:30 am BIRDING IN AN AMPHITHEATREJoy Albrecht

The elevated steps of the Saugeen amphitheatre provide viewpoints over the river and riparian habitat. Here you will get a bird’s-eye view.  (moderate, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

A41 1:30 pm RIVER WALK – Marshall Byle

Enjoy a walk through beautiful habitats ranging from cedars to mixed hardwood, all the while following a trout stream. Observe spawning rainbows and spring migrants including Scarlet Tanagers and warblers.  (moderate, car-pool) (limit 20)

A42 1:30 pm DOWN & DIRTY PHOTOGRAPHY – Doug Pedwell

Participants will explore through photography the wildflowers growing along the Old Shore Road Trail. All types of cameras welcome. Be prepared to get down and dirty.  (easy, car-pool, bring camera) (limit 15)

Evening

A43 7:15 pm WHAT’S THE FLAP ALL ABOUT? – Paloma Plant

The Fatal Light Awareness Program is sustained by a terrific group of volunteers. FLAP was the first organization in the world to raise concerns about bird collisions. They have instigated many changes to building design and lighting in urban areas.  (indoors) (limit 60)

THURSDAY JUNE 2

All Day

B1 6:00 am MALCOLM BLUFFS & AREA BIRDING – Alfred Rabb

Bird in a variety of habitats within the Malcolm Bluffs Nature Reserve and area. The soaring Escarpment cliffs provide spectacular vistas of Colpoys Bay.  (moderate, carpool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B2 8:00 am MORE OF THE BRUCE RE-BECKONS – Willy Waterton

Join Willy in a continuing quest to rediscover Sherwood Fox’s Bruce Peninsula, based on his landmark 1952 book “The Bruce Beckons”. You will spend the day hiking and exploring Fox’s Bruce to see what still exists after 63 years. This trip involves more hiking than A38.  (difficult, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

B3 6:30 am BIRDING KINCARDINE & AREA – James Turland

Hike the trails of Kincardine’s premier birding hotspot, locally known as “Pelee North”. You will see a variety of warblers, ducks and other migrants.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B4 8:30 am THE BIG SIT – Margaret Anderton

Join Margaret to see what can be seen from the comfort of a sitting position overlooking a pond, a field, forest and feeders.  (easy, car-pool, bring a lawnchair) (limit 20)

Afternoon

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

The Huron Fringe is a physiographic unit between the former glacial Lake Algonquin shoreline and the present day Lake Huron shoreline. Former cobble beach ridges, swales and ancient miniature dunes each provide their own combination of plants. (easy) (limit 12)

B6 1:30 pm WHAT’S YOUR QUESTION? – Fran Sanagan

Bring your photographic questions to Fran. With his many years of experience, he will offer insights into how to get the photos you’re after. From raw images to photo editing, Fran can help you improve your technique with his tips of the trade.  (easy) (limit15)

Evening

B7 7:15 pm TICK TALK: LYME DISEASE IN ONTARIO – Dr. Andrew Peregrine

Lyme disease is an infection that primarily occurs in wildlife. However, infections also occur in people. This talk will review current information on the importance of identifying Lyme disease in wildlife and people across Ontario. Practices to prevent infection in people and pets will also be discussed.  (indoors) (limit 60)

FRIDAY JUNE 3

All Day

B8 6:00 am BIRDING NEYAASHIINIGMIING – Jarmo Jalava & Anthony Chegahno

Blending Aniishinaabe culture and traditions with the many interesting ecosystems found in Neyaashiinigmiing (Cape Croker) will be the highlight of this all day trip. This is the height of the breeding season and we will definitely find birds singing on territory.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B9 6:30 am BIRDING SOUTH BRUCE – Marshall Byle

This is car birding at its best. We will follow a scenic route in Southern Bruce County, stopping to bird various habitats.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B10 7:30 am A GEOLOGICAL JOURNEY – Bob Gray

Join Bob in exploring spectacular caves, deep gorges and a scenic broad glacial re-entrant valley along the Niagara Escarpment in eastern Grey County.  (difficult, car pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

B11 6:30 am BIRDING THE 4 CORNERS OF MacGREGOR James Turland

Visit wetlands, shorelines, forests and fields along the margins of MacGregor Park. You will enjoy James’ relaxed style and his ability to locate the birds.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B12 7:00 am BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Ellen Smout

Join Ellen as she leads us along the Tower Trail, a favourite spot for local birders. We will see species that will nest in the boreal forest. We will scope the wetland from the observation tower and dyke.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B13 1:00 pm CHANTRY ISLAND – Marine Heritage Society

Chantry Island, an international Important Bird Area, offers protection of colonial nesting species such as egrets, herons, gulls and cormorants. This boat trip includes a tour of the lighthouse and historic keeper’s cottage.  (moderate, flip-flops not permitted, weather permitting, car-pool leaves the Park at 12:15 pm, $30 per person to be paid at the dock) (limit 9)

B14 1:30 pm WOULDN’T IT BE PLOVERLYStewart Nutt

Join Stew to visit endangered Piping Plovers at one of their few nesting sites in Ontario. You may observe courtship (Plovers) as well as other behaviours and learn about the many perils these birds face. You will find out how local involvement is helping this species recover.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B15 3:00 pm CHANTRY ISLAND – Marine Heritage Society

Chantry Island, an international Important Bird Area, offers protection of colonial nesting species such as egrets, herons, gulls and cormorants. This boat trip includes a tour of the lighthouse and historic keeper’s cottage.  (moderate, flip-flops not permitted, weather permitting, car-pool leaves the Park at 2:15 pm, $30 per person to be paid at the dock) (limit 9)

B16 1:30 pm SAUGEEN SHORES: WATERSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY – Kerry Jarvis

Saugeen Shores is a treasure chest for photographers. Learn photographic waterscape techniques to enhance your photography skills and discover some of the majestic vistas in Saugeen Shores.  (easy, car-pool, bring camera/accessories) (limit 15)

Evening

B17 7:15 pm SPARROWS – Sarah Rupert

Do little brown jobs have your head spinning? Join Sarah for a light-hearted presentation on sparrow identification. She’ll break the sparrows down into small groups, give you tips and tricks to figure out one of the more challenging groups of birds and show you some imposters that are often confused for sparrows.  (indoors) (limit 60)

SATURDAY JUNE 4

All Day

B18 6:30 am BIRDING THE BEYOND – Mark Peck

Mark will travel backroads and byways beyond the Park boundaries searching for various habitats and their niche birds. Knowing Mark, an expert on “nidiology”, you’ll find a nest or two also.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B19 7:00 am BIRDING THE HURON FRINGE – James Turland

A visit to Inverhuron Provincial Park and the Lake Huron shoreline will provide dune grassland as well as edge and shoreline habitats.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

B20 8:00 am BEACHES & BIRDS – Karen Alexander

During this shoreline tour of varied coastal areas north of Sauble Beach, Karen will describe how different types of beach stewardship can influence the health and quality of coastal ecosystems.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

B21 6:30 am BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL – Justin Peter

Diverse habitat along the Tower Trail makes it a mecca for an eclectic mix of warblers, flycatchers, thrushes and more. Justin will help us find these birds by sight (and sound!) and will share tips about bird behaviour.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B22 7:00 am ROAD BIRDING FOR GRASSLAND SPECIES – Brett Woodman

Tour the local countryside looking for elusive nesting grassland birds of Saugeen Shores.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B23 7:30 am BIRDING HIDDEN SPOTS OF MacGREGOR – Ellen Smout

Travel some of the lesser known areas in the park looking for hidden gems.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B24 8:00 am BEGINNING BIRDING FOR ADULTS – Doug Pedwell

This event is for those who wish to learn about the world’s number one hobby – birding. Topics include binoculars, field guides and apps, identification marks of birds and eBird.  (easy, indoor/outdoor, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B25 1:30 pm A BIT BAFFLED BY BOTANY? – Dr. Bill Crins

“Sedges have edges, rushes are round and grasses are hollow right up from the ground.” Bill helped compile the plant list for MacGregor Park; he can provide you with tips on how to identify any plant, including his specialty, sedges, and open your eyes to a whole new world on the forest floor.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 12)

B26 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.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 12)

B27 1:30 pm FIELD SKETCHING &/or JOURNALING – Sarah Rupert

Field sketching helps you hone your identification skills. Everyone can do it. Sarah will show you how sketching can help you document your observations in the field.  (easy, bring pencil & notebook) (limit 20)

B28 1:30 pm BLUEBIRD LANDLORDS – Dennis & Gwen Lewington  

Bluebirds are cavity nesters and natural cavities are not very abundant. Dennis and Gwen will take you on their “Bluebird Trail” which they have been maintaining and monitoring for over 32 years.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B29 1:30 pm ARE YOU A PLOVER LOVER? – Stew Nutt 

If you’re not already, you will be after spending time on the beach with these charismatic, endangered birds.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Evening

B30 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm BRUCE COUNTY CHICKEN DINNER (MacGregor Point Provincial Park, additional charge of $17. Dinner combined with B31 as a single event $23. Pre-registration required) (limit 60)

B31 7:15 pm STORIES FROM THE SUBCONTINENT: A NATURALIST’S RAMBLES IN INDIA – Justin Peter

Justin has visited India several times and will share some of his experiences and observations during this illustrated talk. Visit some of India’s signature sites, see the countryside and people, and of course, some of its amazing wild things and places!  (indoors) (limit 60)

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B32 9:15 pm STARRY STARRY NIGHT – John Hlynialuk

John will introduce you to the wonders of the night sky, and tell you about dark sky events for 2016. Weather permitting, members of the Bluewater Astronomical Society will have their telescopes available for viewing the evening sky.  (easy, indoor, outdoor weather permitting) (limit 30)

SUNDAY JUNE 5

All Day

B33 6:00 am DEBATING THE ISSUES, & MORE, WITH MARK – Mark Wiercinski

This walking / driving tour travels between Bayview Escarpment and Bognor Marsh. Along the way, Mark will highlight issues affecting bird populations in Ontario. You will find out what this has to do with sex, which of course it does!  (difficult, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

 B34 6:30 am WINGED PURSUITS – Nathan Miller

Join Nathan as he pursues the winged jewels of MacGregor Point Provincial Park and Bruce County. We will focus on finding birds during the morning and winged insects as the day warms up. All creatures found will be discussed.  (easy, car-pool, bring lunch) (limit 20)

 Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

7:00 am to 8:30 am MOTH ID – Andalyne Tofflemire

B35 7:00 am BIRDING THE PERIMETER OF THE PARK Justin Peter

Driving the varied habitats along the edge of the park provides a mix of warblers, flycatchers and other possibilities. An opportunity to view wetlands and the shoreline will also enhance this outing.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

B36 7:30 am BIRDING & BOTANIZING – Dr. Bill Crins

The Lake Huron shoreline, fen and edge habitats are featured during this walk from the Visitor Centre. We always benefit from Bill’s broad experience as an interpretive naturalist.  (easy) (limit 20)

B37 8:00 am NEST QUEST – Mark Peck

On a leisurely walk in the park, you will take your love of birding to the next level. Find out how citizen scientists provide valuable conservation information while expanding their observation skills and learning about the nests of breeding birds.  (easy, car-pool) (limit 20)

Afternoon

B38 1:30 pm SPEED, STRENGTH & STEALTH: ONTARIO’S RAPTORS – Wild Ontario

Ontario is home to some of the most amazing hunting birds on the planet! Come get nose-to-beak with these stunning predators, and learn about the incredible skills and abilities that help them do what they do.  (outdoors)

B39 1:30 pm WITCHES & WILDFLOWERS – 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 stories about plants.  (easy) (limit 20)

Evening

B40 8:00 pm SUNSET WALK – Doug Pedwell

Join Doug for a leisurely stroll along the shore of Lake Huron to discover the sights, sounds and scents of an early June evening in MacGregor Point Provincial Park.  (easy) (limit 20)

2016 FESTIVAL FEES

ADULT: 8 Day Festival  $140        4 Day Weekend  $100         Saturday & Sunday $75

YOUTH**:  8 Day Festival  $85       4 Day Weekend  $60       Saturday & Sunday  $45

** 11 to 17

(The above festival events are not suitable for children under 11.)

SINGLE EVENT FEES

Please Note:

Single Event Fees Only Apply if you are NOT Purchasing a Festival, 4 Day Weekend or Saturday & Sunday Pass.

 HALF DAY EVENT: Adult $20 / Youth $15

EVENING EVENT: Adult $10 / Youth $10

ALL DAY EVENT: Adult $40 / Youth $30

All additional fees are listed per event / Fees include Park entrance fee.

The Huron Fringe Birding Festival uses online registration and payment at www.huronfringebirdingfestival.ca

Registration opens February 1, 2015 with viewing on the schedule January 15, 2016

Contact the registrar at birdfest@rogers.com or phone 519-389-6231 for contact information.

Detailed refund information is available on the website.

FAMILY WEEKEND

family

One parent/guardian must accompany children from the same family. This person is allowed to participate in the event free of charge. See the website for parent/guardian registration details.

SATURDAY JUNE 4

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

FAM1 9 am PLUGGING KIDS INTO BIRDING – Richard Tofflemire

Birding with kids can start right in your own backyard or in a provincial park! It is a family friendly activity. Learn about the equipment needed, field guides and apps and the easiest ways to identify birds. Bring binoculars if you have them, we will have some for you to use if you don’t.  (limit 40)

Afternoon

FAM2 1:30 pm AFTERNOON ADVENTURES

(Children will be divided into two groups. Each child will attend both afternoon programs.)  (limit 40)

BINO BOY & ELYTRA GIRL – Andalyne & Richard Tofflemire

Everyone already has the superpowers they need to explore nature! Come out for a dynamic exploration of the forest and learn how much fun discovering nature can be.

and

MONARCH MADNESS – Audrey Armstrong

Not only are monarchs beautiful, but their life cycle and migration is amazing! In this hands-on interactive workshop, children will learn about monarchs and create really cool crafts. To help foster habitat for this Species at Risk, you will make “seed bombs” to take home.

Evening

FAM3 7:15 pm ANIMAL DEFENCES – CAMPFIRE PROGRAM – Park Staff

Join Park Naturalists for an evening of deception, camouflage and chemical warfare as they investigate the defensive nature of MacGregor’s wild inhabitants.  (outdoors)

9:00 pm to 10 pm ATTRACTING MOTHS BESIDE VISITOR CENTRE – Andalyne Tofflemire

SUNDAY JUNE 5

Morning

6:00 am to noon BIRD BANDING – weather permitting

7:00 am to 8:30 am MOTH ID – Andalyne Tofflemire

FAM4  9:00 am MORNING EXPLORATIONS

(Children will be divided into two groups. Each child will attend both morning programs.)  (limit 40)

BUILDING FOR THE BIRDS – Kerry Jarvis

Get in the birding spirit. Build your own structure for a nest or wildlife feeder. No carpentry skills are required; just bring your enthusiasm!  (kit – $10 extra per child. All tools provided.)

and

POND EXPLORATION – Andalyne & Richard Tofflemire

Join Richard and Andalyne for an informal, hands-on look at the fascinating critters that make the pond their home. Dip nets, basins and hand lenses will help us look at the often unseen animals that live in pond water.

Afternoon

FAM5 1:30 pm SPEED, STRENGTH & STEALTH: ONTARIO’S RAPTORS – Wild Ontario

Ontario is home to some of the most amazing hunting birds on the planet! Come get nose-to-beak with these stunning predators, and learn about the incredible skills and abilities that help them do what they do.  (outdoors)

2016 FAMILY WEEKEND FEES

CHILD:* Saturday/Sunday $30    YOUTH:** Saturday/Sunday $45

CHILD HALF DAY EVENT: $9   YOUTH HALF DAY EVENT: $1

CHILD EVENING EVENT:   $8     YOUTH EVENING EVENT: $10

* 5 to 10 accompanied by an adult ** 11 to 17

The Huron Fringe Birding Festival is presented by the Huron Fringe Birding Festival Committee, the Friends of MacGregor Point and MacGregor Point Provincial Park. Festival headquarters are at MacGregor Point Provincial Park, located approximately five kilometres south of Port Elgin, Ontario on the shore of Lake Huron. The park address is: MacGregor Point Provincial Park, 1593 Bruce Road 33, Port Elgin, Ontario, Canada N0H 2C5

MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK

MacGregor Point Provincial Park’s location on the shore of Lake Huron sets the stage for our festival. Our backdrop for the festival includes the migratory flyway along Lake Huron, Bruce and Grey counties and the beautiful Bruce Peninsula. We attract hike and event leaders from across Ontario and beyond.

The Friends of MacGregor Point

The Friends of MacGregor Point present this Festival as one way to ensure the preservation of the natural legacy of MacGregor Point for future generations. The Huron Fringe Shop in the Visitor Centre provides 10% off “all things birds” during the Festival.

For information about the Friends and events planned for 2016 visit their website www.friendsofmacgregor.org

Huron Fringe Birding Festival Registration February (opens February 1): www.huronfringebirdingfestival.ca

Registration inquiries: birdfest@rogers.com or 519-389-6231

 

 

 

 

And the OFO Certificate of Appreciation goes to…

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FRED JAZVAC

by James Turland

Fred Jazvac and his OFO CERTIFICATE OF APPRECIATION Photo courtesy James Turland

Fred Jazvac and his OFO CERTIFICATE OF APPRECIATION
Photo courtesy Cindy McGregor

Each year the Ontario Federation of Ornithologists (OFO) Board of Directors recognizes individuals and organizations for their outstanding contribution to the birds and birding community of Ontario. Last Saturday night, at the OFO Banquet in Ottawa, Fred Javac was presented with a Certificate of Appreciation.

Fred was nominated partly for his role in the Bruce Birding Club (BBC).

Many of us know Fred because he initially welcomed us to the BBC. He has been there from the start and through gentle encouragement and teaching ability brings out the best birder in us all. Fred is not only the foundation of the BBC but is the common link that keeps us all bonded together.

Thanks Fred, for all you have done to commence, oversee, and make the BBC such a great club. Congratulations, your award recognizes your dedication to the BBC.

But, the BBC is only one of the recipients of Fred’s love of birds. The Huron Fringe Birding Festival also benefits greatly by his participation on committees and as a hike leader. Fred’s presentations are often to a full house. He has a way of making complex families like the sparrows comprehensible. Because of his love of teaching Friday nights are now set aside to be teaching programs. Congratulations from the HFBF.

rack b

The full program will be available on-line January 15th 2015 on the Friends of MacGregor website at: www.friendsofmacgregor.org. 

 Be sure to mark your calendars with next year’s dates…May 22nd to May 25th and May 28th to May 31st, 2015.

Registration starts on February 1st, 2015.

Check out this video for a closer look at the festival: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_vvcLJdE74

Follow us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WEEKEND 2 – HFBF – ITS GOING TO BE A BIG ONE!

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Word is that the second weekend of the Huron Fringe Birding Festival promises to be one for the birds – i.e. – there will be lots and lots of them.

That’s what the local birders are all excited about. Why? Well, remember that frigid ‘Arctic Vortrex’ that made the winter of 2014 a thing of legend? It delayed everything spring such that the migration should be ramping up for the first HFBF weekend and the second should be busier than usual bird-wise.

All the more reason to visit: http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org and check out our second weekend event availabilities. There are lots of hikes available designed to give you a most satisfying birding experience. It will be a peak time for birds that you won’t want to miss.

Two optimal viewing spots to see what is incoming are the Tower Trail and the Ducks Unlimited pond. The viewing tower and the bird blind are perfect for sightings. The habitat, a mix of wetlands and hardwood forests is just what the birds are looking for.

And, it so happens, that Justin Peter is leading a hike called BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL’ (B32) on SUNDAY JUNE 1 at 6:30 AM and there are 16 OPENINGS AVAILABLE .

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

Come see what he is looking at. B32 – Birding the Tower Trail. June 1.

You’ll want to take advantage of this because Justin truly lives “for the birds”. In fact, he cannot remember a time when he was not interested in birds and nature.

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 he eventually landed work as a seasonal, and then full-time interpretive naturalist at Gatineau Park. Three years later, he began full-time work as Senior Park Naturalist at Algonquin Park, where spent 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!). 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 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.

That’s why Justin Peter is the perfect guide to a unique birding experience. REGISTER NOW FOR ‘BIRDING THE TOWER TRAIL’ (B32) on SUNDAY JUNE 1 AT: http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org

Follow Justin Peter on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/justin.peter.75

And on Ontario Birds: https://www.facebook.com/groups/377736792291721/

For an up-close look at your Huron Fringe Birding Festival experience

click on: http://youtu.be/0_vvcLJdE74

https://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

Recognized as One of Ontario's Top 100 Festivals

Recognized as One of Ontario’s Top 100 Festivals

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

MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK, PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

Email: birdfest@rogers.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

WILDFLOWER FACT AND FICTION WITH HEATHER STARRS

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Heather Starrs and MacGregor Point Provincial Park are well acquainted with each other.

Heather

 

After completing her Honours Degree in Biology, with a focus on wildlife biology and ecology, at Trent U and then earning her Teaching Certificate at Brock University, she worked at MacGregor from 1988-1997, and again in 1999.

Heather was responsible for all Visitor Centre programming, summer students and volunteers. She assisted with the organization of the first Huron Fringe Birding Festival, spent 6 years on the board of Friends of MacGregor, and was manager of the Huron Fringe Shop for several years and editor of the Spotted Turtle Newsletter.

Heather’s programming interests included carnivorous plants, spiders and wildflowers. Currently she spends her time with her “four wonderful children,” and volunteers at the school and church.

When the weather allows she likes to venture out on her bike with her camera to search for local wildflowers to add to her photo collection.

Columbine

Columbine

Here’s how Heather describes her event – WILDFLOWERS: HISTORICAL FACTS & FICTION – B13 – 1:30 pm – Friday, May 30

Legends and superstitions are attached to many common and not so common plants found at MacGregor. Our walk will introduce you to some and their stories. My hike will be leisurely and informal. I have stories, poems, mythology, medicinal and biological information for many wildflowers we may see as well as a few herbs, trees and shrubs. I welcome any stories and information that others on the hike might like to share.”

Stripped Coralroot

Stripped Coralroot 

Dwarf Lake Iris

Dwarf Lake Iris 

Red Trillium

Red Trillium

Yellow Lady-Slipper

Yellow Lady-Slipper

HFBFphoto

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

https://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival

birdfest@rogers.com

HFBF IS FILLING UP FAST! REGISTER NOW IF YOU HAVENT ALREADY!

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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.

brdfest2

FRIDAY MAY 23

9 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”.

5 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.

8 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.

1 OPENING LEFT – 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.

4 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

3 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.

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.

6 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.

8 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 1 OPENING LEFT – 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.

7 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.)

32 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 1 OPENING LEFT – 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 3 OPENINGS LEFT– 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.

4 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.)

6 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.)

6 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.

9 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.

29 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 3 OPENINGS LEFT – 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)

10 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.)

11 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.

5 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.

19 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

10 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)

ONLY 2 OPENINGS LEFT – 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.)

12 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)

8 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.

14 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 3 OPENINGS LEFT – 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!).

ONLY 3 OPENINGS LEFT – 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 dawn to dusk 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.

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.)

7 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 LEFT – 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.

ONLY 4 OPENINGS LEFT – 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!).

5 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.)

32 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.)

11 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

8 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

16 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.

16 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 1 OPENING LEFT – 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.

ONLY 1 OPENING LEFT – 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.)

12 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

HFBFphoto

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

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

MacGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK – PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

Email: birdfest@rogers.com 

BIRDING ACCORDING TO JAMES

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 If you asked James Turland when and where he likes to bird, he just might say ‘always and everywhere’. His philosophy is simple, “There are birds in all landscapes one just has to look”. Here, in his own words, are his thoughts on birding:

James and Feathered Friend

James and Feathered Friend

The average person seems to think the best places for birds are remote and pristine, and they can be, but often these places are costly to get to. More realistically birders look for their feathered friends close to home. A birders yard is often an oasis of plants and feeders specially placed to lure birds closer. Birding doesn’t get better than finding a rarity right in your own backyard. Birders have a knack for looking at landscapes and seeing the beauty in the birds. A landfill site is not just a pile of garbage but also a mecca for gulls and other scavenging birds. Sewage lagoons are sanctuaries for shorebirds and waterfowl. Some urban parks are bird magnets and havens. I believe with a little urban planning these places could be enriched and turned into truly scenic wildlife habitats. For now we just have to keep up wind and dream a little.

When visiting Bruce County farmland I try to imagine a pristine prairie. Hidden within this idyllic sea of grass are specialized creatures waiting to be discovered. Because of a lack of perches some grassland birds have evolved to sing while flying and also incorporate aerial displays. Even if blindfolded the babblings of Bobolinks conjure images of fields and meadows. The amazing woo woos of the Snipe as it dips and dives way above its chosen territory is not easily forgot. Yet other songs are cleverly devised to misrepresentation. The Grasshopper Sparrows high-pitched trill could easily be mistaken for a Six Legged Hopper. Birds don’t get much more secretive than the Henslow’s Sparrow. It’s weak chip is usually only heard from the tall grass at night. An Upland Sandpipers presence signifies short grass and that probably means grazers are nearby. Other grassland signature birds we hope to see are Eastern Meadow Lark, Clay-Coloured Sparrow, Northern Harrier and Sedge Wrens.  

When Europeans first contacted North America, Ontario was nearly completely forested except for the occasional beaver meadow. By 1900 only 10% of the forest remained. Pockets of grassland species initially benefited and expanded into the newly created habitat. Most recently as pasture decreases and the land is subjected to more intensive farming practices the grasslands and all its inhabitants are in jeopardy. There are solutions and we all can play a part. Like the movie Field of Dreams tells us, ‘Build It And They Will Come’. 

REGISTER NOW AT: http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org  FOR YOUR BIRDING EXPERIENCE WITH JAMES

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.

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.

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)

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.

HFBFphoto

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

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

https://twitter.com/fompp

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