October already then! The last few days of September here departed in a cool blast of breezy weather with some rain, not really great for birding and so it proved. The poor weather also effectively stopped visible migration except for Canada Geese which are arriving daily and Myrtle Warblers which kept pushing through. Vis mig will pick up again, perhaps later this week, I’m still hoping to get a few crossbills through and perhaps both grosbeaks if the winter finch forecast was accurate, it normally is.
With it being a new month I was determined to start it with a few field hours under my belt. Naturally I started at St-Lazare sand pits where mostly not much was happening except for a few more White-crowned Sparrows having arrived. As I was putting the damp scope back in the car I heard an American Golden Plover (species 160 for the pits this year) and so I decided to check the fields around the St-Clet area where I found a flock last year. In the end I didn’t need to go that far because I found a feeding flock of 57 American Golden Plovers on the fields along Montee Chenier between Ste-Dominique and St-Emmanuelle at the east end. I was able to park and wait until the odd bird was bold enough to get within lens range and take a few shots, not great but not terrible. Frustratingly I had left my 1.4x converter and digiscoping camera at home because of the bad weather and attrocious light, both would have seen use and perhaps brought some of the partial summer plumaged birds into range. While sitting and waiting for the wandering plovers at least two immature Peregrines were sitting out in the field making everything a bit cautious, there were also several flocks of American Pipits around and just about every sparrow I got a look at was a Vesper.
The forecast is for the weather to clear a bit later so I might go back and have another go. Below are my best shots of the plovers.