Thursday, 17 October 2013

Killdeer Aplenty

Killdeer Aplenty
Edgeley Boulevard
Vaughan, ON
17 October 2013

    There is a small (certainly less than half a hectare) site which has remained undeveloped for several years, surrounded by a sea of developed land, with both retail plazas, and office and commercial units. Perhaps there were problems with financing, or obtaining permits, but whatever the reason the site remained untouched.

    I have monitored this location at least three days per week for about three years and it has become a bit of a magnet for birds. It is quite remarkable the range of species that have put in an appearance, including such diverse species as Merlin Falco columbarius, Horned Lark Eremophila alpestris and a whole suite of shorebirds. Killdeer Charadrius vociferus have bred there every year.

    Sadly, it is all coming to an end. recently a perimeter fence has been erected around part of the site, and heavy equipment has been brought in to start work on construction.

    Yesterday, by actual count there were fifteen Killdeer present and today there were twelve. Soon they will be migrating south and by the time they return next spring nothing will remain of their former habitat. I will miss them!

1 comment:

  1. This is very sad but I suppose inevitable. Birds often find what we would term 'waste land' to their liking but sadly that almost always means that their tenure there is likely to be limited, as 'waste land' is always seen as ripe for development. Research has shown that the dispaced birds will not simply go somewhere else, they may try and return and unsuccessfully utilise whatever is put there, but they will inevitably have to move on and when they do they will encounter conflict with other birds that already hold those territories, there is not unlimited space for wildlife as some seem to think and what is left is ever diminished by more and more development.

    It is lovely to have such a patch to yourself and to monitor it over time and it must hurt to see those diggers roll in. I feel for you my friend and for the wildlife that had made it their home.