Sunday, April 03, 2005

American Woodcock on Soggy Ground

Last weekend there were patches of bare earth peaking out through the snow. This weekend we have a few patches of snow remaining on bare earth. The last 24 hours we have had a very intense rainfall estimated around 2.5 cm (1. In.) in a day and this deluge has contributed considerably to the disappearance of the snow.

In my short walk today I flushed out an American Woodcock, [Philohela (1) minor (old scientific name) Scolopax (2) minor] a very orangy-brown coloured bird in flight. It was interesting to flush out something other than the usual ruffed grouse. The ground was quite soggy everywhere throughout the forest floor other than those few patches where there was still some ice and snow on the ground. The streams are all overflowing. The fields in the adjacent lots are completely flooded in many cases. For example one field west of here in the next concession, is a solid lake. The Canada geese will come down into these fields for a stopover. At night you can hear the cacophony of honkers. There are also several small coveys of pintail ducks.

1. Field Guide to the Birds, Roger Tory Peterson, 1947 and Birds of North America, Robbins, Bruun and Zim. 1966.

2. and other current webpages.

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