Last week there were (at least) two interesting bird sightings at QUBS. On Bracken Tract Vicki Friesen’s “Conservation biology of birds” class found a yellow-breasted chat, Icteria virens, a large member of the wood warbler family (Parulidae). The species is broadly distributed in the USA but in eastern Canada is typically found in southwestern Ontario and Prince Edward County in eastern Ontario (see range maps here).
The second species of interest is the red-bellied woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus), a species common in the southeastern USA but typically found in Carolinean Canada only. This particular individual was seen on the Lindsey Lake property (and actually bounced out of a mist net after responding to a playback tape). Red-bellied woodpeckers are reported ocassionally from upsate New York and from the Kingston area but is not particularly common here. In part this may because their call roughly resembles a gray treefrog (Hyla versicolor). The Ontario Bird Atlas presents a nice synopsis of this species.