In periods of quiet, such as we are basking in now, it is worthwhile taking the opportunity to look at the more common species a little more closely, although to call Cackling Goose common is perhaps a stretch, more it is a scarce but regular visitor to our part of the world.
Today at St-Lazare sand pits – where else – the usual mob of Canada Geese were keeping well away from the hunters. They do this by choosing to hang around the pits a while instead of trying to get peace on one of the large waters, where the gunships will run them down, or in the fields, where there appear to be enough guns to fight a small war, I digress a little. In the aforementioned mob was this’ Cackling Goose (below). A good comparison with the hulking monsters, even if it is a distant record shot.
Below are some older shots from the pits showing two different Cackling Geese, hard to believe they are the same species, given some of the obvious structural differences.
Check out this link for more info including a map: http://www.sibleyguides.com/2007/07/identification-of-cackling-and-canada-goose/.
Enough of geese, I also had a look around the St-Clet area for the first Snowy Owl of the winter without success, I did find five Rough-legged Hawks though, two dark form and three regular versions. The regulars were all hunting in the same area and I couldn’t get a decent lens on them. I did manage this of a dark form though, another record shot at best.
As the sparrow migration winds down, this Fox Sparrow seems to be happy hanging around the garden feeders. Unlike most that we get, this one prefers to be in the open, instead of rearranging the leaf-litter under the shrubbery.
Thanks to those who took the time to download my latest eBook about St-Lazare sand pits, now you are all experts. Thanks also for the kind comments. If you have no idea what I am referring to, click on the Caspian Tern cover image on the right, this will take you to the download page – free. The Snowy Owl one is free too, the others are cheap and a jolly good read, although I may be biased.