Fifty Road at Lake Ontario
30 November 2013
The concentration of ducks on Lake Ontario at this time of year is often spectacular, with staggering numbers of some species. Certain locations, often with semi-sheltered bays, are well-known feeding areas during daylight hours. One is pretty much guaranteed a marvelous spectacle of nature and rare species are nearly always present to any observer with patience and time to spend scanning the flocks.
This male Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula was just one of thousands present.
All three species of scoter were present, though not particularly close to shore. The following picture shows Surf Scoter Melanitta perspicallata, the commonest member of this genus on the water that day, with a lone White-winged Scoter Melanitta deglandi off to the left.
As might be expected numerous Mallards Anas platyrynchos were amongst the throng, often closest to shore.
This Mute Swan Cynus olor was digging deep for food!
Every so often something seemed to spook the birds on the water and a mass lift-off would take place. Whenever that happened we would scan the sky for a Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus or Bald Eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus but nothing ever seemed to be amiss, and the birds quickly returned to the surface of the lake.
The last days of November have been unseasonably cold and there is already a buildup of ice along the shore. Winter has its challenges but it also has its stellar delights.
How beautiful are these sculptures of nature, especially when contrasted against the green of the algae clinging to the rocks.