huronfringefest

One of Canada's Premier Birding and Nature Festivals

Posts Tagged ‘Huron Fringe

SEE YOU NEXT YEAR. THANKS FOR COMING.

leave a comment »

IMG_3927

FAMILY WEEKEND STILL HAS PLENTY OF OPENINGS

leave a comment »

And you still have time to register for all events.

ONE LAST WEEKEND TO GO. AND YOU CAN STILL REGISTER FOR OPEN EVENTS. ITS EASY. COME TO MacGREGOR POINT PARK. MAKE YOUR WAY TO THE VISITOR’S CENTRE (JUST FOLLOW THE ROADSIDE SIGNS). AND TALK TO THE NICE LADIES AT THE REGISTRATION TENT. THEY’LL BE MORE THAN HAPPY TO FIT YOU IN – ON THE SPOT. ITS A GREAT WAY TO SPEND TIME AND THE WEEKEND WITH YOUR KIDS.

Image

SATURDAY JUNE 4

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.

Morning

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

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)

IMG_3789

Registration inquiries: AT THE PARK

OR – birdfest@rogers.com

OR – 519-389-6231

ARE WE IN YOUR CALENDAR?

leave a comment »

Rack Card

Follow us on Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/HuronFringeBirdingFestival.

twitter: @HuronBirdfest

Email: birdfest@rogers.com.

Banner

THIS TOO SHALL MELT

leave a comment »

 

Lake1

Its no new revelation…Lake Huron and Georgian Bay are frozen over. The Huron Fringe is encased in frigid whiteness while it awaits both the melt and the migration. Rest assured though, the birds, butterflies, wildflowers, the dragonflies, damsels and frogs, the snow covered, ice-coated landscape and shorelines, the pastures, streams and woodlands that we all love…they will be there…waiting for you when HFBF welcomes you all beginning May 22.

Meantime, as of this writing, over 60 events are still wide open.

Best to guarantee yourself a spot…Now. Why wait for Spring.

Check out our schedule of events and register at: http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org.


And here are a couple of Events you might want to consider:


Friday, May 22 – A3 – 6:30 AM – BIRDING INVERHURON & SURROUNDING AREA Marshall Byle

During this birding adventure Marshall will stop at various habitats along the shoreline to Inverhuron Provincial Park including the Tiverton lagoons. In the park you’ll explore the ancient dunes, riverbanks and varied forest types.

Marshall

Marshall Byle received his first field guide to birds when he was just four years old. That was the beginning of a life long involvement. Today, with over half a century of experience, he still loves to bird and to share the wonder of birds with others. As a member of the Huron Fringe Field Naturalists, Marshall brings years of expertise to his passion. You will enjoy Marshall’s mild manner as he leads you through some of his favourite spots in Bruce County.


 

May 30 – B23 – 9:00 AM – SCOPING IT OUT – Andalynne & Richard Tofflemire

It’s more than just identifying what you see. Andalynne and Richard 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!

 May 31 – POND EXPLORATION – Andalynne & Richard Tofflemire

Join Richard and Andalynne 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.

Tofflemire

Richard and Andalyne met while working together at a nature hobby store and have been exploring the outdoors together ever since. This husband & wife team leads nature walks at multiple events & venues throughout the year, as well as connecting people with nature on a daily basis through their respective jobs. Richard is still Manager at Wild Birds Unlimited Guelph and Andalyne works as full-time Naturalist at Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory. With their combined knowledge of birds and bugs, and their similar level of enthusiasm, Richard and Andalyne enjoy guiding all ages to a more intimate connection with the natural world around them.


 

BREAKING NEWS:

Recognized as One of Ontario's Top 100 Festivals

Recognized as One of Ontario’s Top 100 Festivals

FOR THE SECOND YEAR IN A ROW THE HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL HAS BEEN NAMED ONE OF THE TOP 100 FESTIVALS IN ONTARIO.

 

brdfest2

The complete schedule is available at: http://www.friendsofmaccgredor.org.

Huron Fringe Birding Festival Registration: www.friendsofmacgregor.org

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

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

twitter: @HuronBirdfest

Email: birdfest@rogers.com.

 

WHY IS THIS MAN RUNNING? AND WHY IS HE RUNNING IN A KILT?

with one comment

"I'm telling ya' - I saw a Warbler just down the road...there!"

“I’m telling ya’ – I saw a Warbler just down the road…there!”

That’s just Mark Wiercinski. And only Mark knows for sure.

Whatever the answer though, it probably makes a ton of sense…to Mark. Some would say he’s the closest thing to a ROCK STAR you’ll ever see at HFBF. Others would agree that Birders and Biologists can strike you as strange ducks (pardon the pun)… sometimes.

That notwithstanding…be ready to run with Mark on three upcoming events during Huron Fringe 2015. Mark down these dates because he sells out fast…May 25 he’s revealing the mysteries of SEX AND THE SINGLE WARBLERon May 24 he’s WRESTLING WITH WARBLERS…and on May 31 he gets somewhat serious as he is DEBATING THE ISSUES: BIRDING BAYVIEW TO BOGNOR.

Sure this is just a tease. The full story on Mark’s excellent events is coming soon. So, be ready to book.

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

 Registration starts on February 1st 2015 at: www.friendsofmacgregor.org

brdfest2

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

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

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

twitter: @HuronBirdfest

Recognized as One of Ontario's Top 100 Festivals

Recognized as One of Ontario’s Top 100 Festivals

BIRDING ACCORDING TO JAMES

leave a comment »

 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

 

HFBF REGULAR BECOMES FIRST TIME LEADER

leave a comment »

Meet Marilyn Ohler - First Time HFBF Leader

Meet Marilyn Ohler – First Time HFBF Leader

Marilyn Ohler is no stranger to the Huron Fringe Birding Festival. She’s been a HFBF regular every season except one…the first. This year, though, is special for her because this is the year that Marilyn attends as a leader. On Friday, May 23, beginning at 7:00 AM, Marilyn, truly a festival veteran, plans a special morning walk to help you learn more about birding on the trails of MacGregor Point Provincial Park. 

Leading is a new adventure for her and a means of sharing what she’s learned from others. She enjoys finding out more about the local birding hotspots but since she doesn’t live in the area, feels more comfortable sharing the experience of spring birding in MacGregor. And Marilyn is particularly skilled at birding by ear, which will prove valuable and informative on the trails.

Marilyn was raised on a dairy operation in rural Oxford County. Growing up so close to nature gave her a great appreciation of it, although at that time, bird watching was not a part of her life. It wasn’t until she turned 40, after buying a pair of binoculars, that she discovered the world of birds.

Eager to learn she joined the Stratford Field Naturalists and learned to bird by joining more experienced birders on field events, such as the time a few members came to the Huron Fringe Birding Festival. Since then, she joins family and friends to camp at MacGregor Point Provincial Park. To her, spring presents a wonderful opportunity to learn more about the area, the park and its migratory visitors.

Plan to join Marilyn for a birding walkabout on Friday, May 23.   

ON-LINE REGISTRATION –  http://www.friendsofmacgregor.org

Email: birdfest@rogers.com

 “Like” us on Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Friends-of-MacGregor-Point-Park/101912730956

 Follow HFBF on Twitter

https://twitter.com/fompp 

HURON FRINGE BIRDING FESTIVAL

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

MCGREGOR POINT PROVINCIAL PARK

PORT ELGIN, ONTARIO

 

FESTIVAL WRAP-UP

leave a comment »

Windshield

Parking at a Trail Head somewhere on the Bruce.

It seemed apt and perhaps somewhat poetic that on the morning of this summer’s first day, the longest day of the year, the Huron Fringe Birding Festival Committee gathered to take stock and think about ‘what’s next.’

The 2013 Festival Surveys were in, a preliminary budget compared our progress to last year and committee members came well-armed with new ideas and a view to what needs to be done to make the 2014 Festival even more attractive and successful than what had just passed. This summer solstice gathering was an opportunity to look back and more importantly, look ahead.

This years’s introduction of PayPal made things easier for people to sign-up online. Four events were full on the first day, fourteen by the end of February and six more in March. Compared to last year, attendees were up, as were registrations in single events. Of 76 events, 41 were more than 80% full at the start of the Festival. On May 24, the Festival’s first day 87 people signed up, more than twice as many as 2012.

“Its not radical growth,” commented Committee Chair Jim Duncan, “ but it shows we are indeed growing.”

Careful examination of the survey results yielded some insights that will help with future planning, procedures and organization. Web-based registration will be streamlined to make event selection for attendee’s easier.

Bruce and Grey Counties are a natural paradise. They contain 48 species of orchids and 50 species of ferns accounting for two thirds of Ontario’s totals. There are at least 78 species of butterflies in the area. A local expert claims that there are 19 species of warblers nesting in the counties and perhaps the most nesting birds in Southern Ontario.Our objective is to help you enjoy this natural wonderland through the Huron Fringe Birding Festival.

Event planning begins in earnest in August. From registration, to events, to hike leaders, we are committed to bringing you a premium nature experience wrapped up in a smooth running festival program.

This blog will be bringing you updates and information on the 2014 Festival as soon as they are available…so follow us…and be ready for HFBF registration day, February 1, 2014.

brdfest2

 The 2014 Huron Fringe Birding Festival runs from  May 23 to May 26 and May 29 to June 1.

Registration begins February 1, 2014 at:

http://friendsofmacgregor.org/page/schedule-of-events

 Like us on Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Friends-of-MacGregor-Point-Park/101912730956

Slippers

 

 

A CONVERSATION WITH KERRY JARVIS

leave a comment »

I shared a warm beverage with Kerry Jarvis at Crema Café in Port Elgin the other day. The purpose of our get-together was to chat about his thoughts on his upcoming Huron Fringe Birding Festival Events. That’s when he proudly showed me a copy of Outdoor Photography Canada magazine.

The cover featured a stunning shot of an Eastern Grey Treefrog.

I taped our conversation.

Kerry Jarvis cover fall 2012

Kerry:             

“This is my first national magazine cover. I’ve been on other provincial and regional covers – but this is the one I’m most happy with.”

HFBF:           

“So you have the cover shot and the lead article?”

 Kerry:             

“Right…its called Frogs and Toads Through Your Lens.”

 HFBF:                       

“Where was it taken?”

 Kerry:             

“There’s a MacGregor Point Park connection here. My wife and I were camping there one week in late June. Throughout the week we had been hearing the distinctive trill of a Grey Treefrog. Early one morning she spotted it on a nearby tree. I grabbed my camera, tripod and flash hoping to document this wonderful creature. Normally they retreat or freeze on your approach. Fortunately this guy decided on the latter. I’m always of the mind that if you’re photographing something you should have some knowledge about the subject, its behavior and its habitat.”

 HFBF:           

Fortunately for us…is this the inspiration for your June 1 HFBF event you’re calling  ‘How and Where to Photograph Frogs and Toads?”

 KERRY:         

“Yes it is. In MacGregor I’ve seen and photographed 6 species of frogs and toads – Wood Frogs, Eastern Grey Treefrogs, Leopard Frogs, Green Frogs, American Toads, and Spring Peepers. So my event is coming right on the heels of my article. I’ll do a session indoors first. We’ll learn to identify by call and visual. There’s only 13 species in the Province – so it’s easier to memorize a dozen or so calls – and I’ll talk about different species habitat. I’ll share photo tips on how to approach frogs…and then we’ll do a photo hike to see what we can hear and identify…some of them are  pretty small and well camouflaged,  so sometimes you have to play detective to find them. This is the fun part of taking workshops at the HFBF, you never know what surprises you’ll come across.”

 HFBF:             

“What kind of gear does one need to shoot these little guys?”

 Kerry:             

“You don’t always need pro gear. If you have a point and shoot you’re in good shape. When I did this article several of the images were taken with my compact camera. Basically I’ll be sharing some tips on how to take better images of frogs and toads regardless if you have a digital SLR or a compact camera.”

 HFBF:           

“You’re also doing another event on Saturday, May 25 at 1:30.”

 Kerry:             

“Right…Listening to the Sounds of Nature. It’s about being more acute with our ears. Instead of looking at nature it’s about listening when you’re outdoors. It’s about understanding the sounds your hear in the bush from common birds, frogs, mammals, and other critters…even the sound of wind and thunder.”

 HFBF:           

“How are you setting this one up?”

 Kerry:             

“Over the years I recorded various sounds of nature: — frogs, squirrels, moving water, rain, wind, birds and matched them with visuals…there’s more to nature than meets the eye. I became intrigued with the abundance and variety of sounds that nature provides us.”

 HFBF:           

“Sounds good…sorry, but I couldn’t resist the pun.”

kj business card email

Kerry Jarvis is recently retired after 28 years at Seneca College where he was Program Co-coordinator for Event Marketing Management. He taught Marketing, Photography, Videography, and Event Management. A naturalist, educator, photographer, author, presenter, gardener and traveller, Kerry’s varied interests and background proves he loves everything in nature and he’ll go out of his way to experience and record it.

 


ON-LINE REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN. 

 http://friendsofmacgregor.org/page/schedule-of-events 

 

 

ALL ABOUT THE BBC

leave a comment »

THE BRUCE BIRDING CLUB

By Fred Jazvac

“I can hear it. Can you see it?”
Photograph by Liz Addison

If you scratch the surface of the Huron Fringe Birding Festival (HFBF) you will invariably find members of the Bruce Birding Club (BBC) peeping through. The simple reason being that both organizations have been happily, productively and inextricably linked for a number of years.

The Bruce Birding Club, which started in the fall of 2002, is a gathering of friends who share a common interest – the love of birds and nature. A former birding club in the area called the Bruce County Bird Finders Club (BCBFC) was the foundation of the BBC’s origin as a local birding club. The BCBFC had not operated for 9 months. Fred Jazvac, the only remaining active member of the BCBFC, restarted the concept by recruiting new people from the local Huron Fringe Birding Festival.

And it grew from there. Outings were held on Wednesday to avoid the days when the local curling club was operating. That change brought in Mike Pickup, a local, experienced birder and great contributor to the Friends of MacGregor Point Provincial Park. MIke the recruiter brought in Margaret Anderton and Tania Gilchrist. As news of the BBC spread out of town birders began to show up. Dave Schaus from Walkerton, John Cummings from Clifford, Ralph and Mary Anne Knowels from Kincardine who brought in James Turland, Jim and Judy Duncan and Mike and Helen Penfold from Owen Sound.

These new additions also brought a level of expertise and leadership that enhanced and improved the club. With these beginnings birders were attracted from a much wider area than Saugeen Shores They came from Collingwood, Thornbury and Kitchener and participated on a regular basis. From time to time visitors from farther away places in Ontario and even England have dropped in.

Some of the earliest members were the late Wendy Grava and Cynthia Isber. In 2002, Wendy Grava took it upon herself to keep a list of the sightings of club outings emailing them to members. Wendy designed an excellent template to report on the outings. It is still used today by the BBC with some modifications.

An outstanding volunteer in our area and former BCBFC member Mary Rapati took it a step further by keeping an archive of the birds seen by the BBC since 2003. Mary involved her husband Tony and between the two of them they have also kept records for other organizations like the Huron Fringe Birding Festival. This is a colourful and neatly appointed archive, which provides a history of birds seen in our area from 2003. If you wish a copy of it, please contact Fred Jazvac at jazvacfb@bmts.com

Our love of nature is evident in contributions made beyond the BBC. Club members have volunteered heavily in bird related activities in our area. BBC members make up 11 of the 12 members who run the Huron Fringe Birding Festival. They have been active today and in the past in compiling at least 4 different local Christmas Bird Counts. Our members also participate in five CBC’s locally. They have been heavily involved in the Breeding Bird Atlas, grassland and owl surveys, and in the Piping Plover project at Sauble Beach. BBC member, Stew Nutt ran that project in its most successful years.

One of our members, Judith King was honored by Bird Studies Canada for her participation in point counts across Canada. Our members have led bird hikes for the HFBF, the BBC, local naturalist clubs and OFO hikes. What is especially good about that is some of them were beginning birders who learned their skills by being members of the BBC. Because of this shared learning hike leaders for our outings come from volunteers from the club membership.

While we do not actively recruit members for the BBC, we never turn away people who are interested in joining us. At times we wonder if we have too many for an outing, so we tend to break up in small groups when birding and there is plenty of expertise there to manage the sightings. We pride ourselves in being different than other leader-led hikes because everyone participates in finding and identifying birds.

In some sense, the BBC is unique in that it has no President, no fees and no formal organization. It is held together by the friendliness of its members who come from all walks of life, through excellent communications, through sharing of photographs, sightings at their homes and rare and interesting birds that they see in the field. Bonnie Patterson-Collins, artist, hike leader, volunteer, early member of the BBC and photographer started the sharing of photographs.

Because of this closeness between club members, one wonders if the BBC is a birding club or a social club. What matters is having fun, enjoying nature and our time together. Best of all we are always learning from each other. Life is good.

Birding is an all-season activity. The BBC at Niagara.

Written by huronfringefest

November 23, 2012 at 9:37 pm