A little after work birding

I had to run up to the office for a few days so I thought I’d try and fit in some after work birding.  I checked the sunset time tonight and thought I “might” have enough time to make it down to Col. Sam Smith Park before sunset.  This would be my second attempt at finding the long-staying Western Grebe & Harlequin Duck.  After fighting the Blue Jays traffic on the 427 (the ball club not the bird) I was at the park by 6:35.  Plenty of light left.

First stop was the marina for a quick scan.  Duck…duck….grebe!   Western Grebe to be more specific!   I didn’t have a camera so I had to settle for the iScoped record shot.  New Ontario/Canada bird for me.   That was easy!   Scanned the rest of the birds and headed east.

After scanning the eastern bay, I was picking out a lot of species but not my target duck.  Still nice to be out though.  A photographer standing on the rock jetty caught my eye.  He seemed to be fixated on something.  Maybe my target?   I made my way over and struck up a conversation.  He wasn’t familiar with the species.  That’s ok – I wanted to find the duck on my own.  I moved the scope to a new spot and had a look.  Sitting dead centre was the Harlequin!  I love when that happens.  I invited the photographer over for a look.  I tried in vain to take a record shot but it would only stay on the surface long enough for the camera to focus and he was down.  I gave up and just watched it for a while. What a way to cap off the night.  Lifer!

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