Saturday, 8 March 2014

Arriving this week?

Well, the calendar says March 8 but you couldn't blame someone if they looked out their window and called you a liar! Brandon has been all over the medium range forecast and you'll see that we are in for more below average temperatures before being totally ready to declare spring has arrived.

Arriving this week? Sandhill Crane

That being said it IS the second week of March and the show must go on! According to spring arrival dates I calculated using eBird data, 16 species typically start making their mass arrival into Ontario this week:
08 March -   Ring-necked Duck
09 March -   Horned Grebe

Sandhill Crane
10 March -   Ross's Goose

Eurasian Wigeon

Northern Shoveler

Green-winged Teal


American Robin
11 March -   Red-shouldered Hawk

Little Gull
12 March -   American Woodcock
13 March -   Merlin
14 March -   Turkey Vulture

Northern Harrier

Song Sparrow

I'd say however that we're probably a week behind and can more realistically expect to see some of the birds that normally arrive in the first week of March like Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles. Looking at eBird we're actually not too far behind where we were last year, but well behind 2012 for those species:

However, with spring migration things can change quickly, even yesterday with warmer (average) temperatures and a light south wind birds were moving (a couple hawks at Beamer, blackbirds along Lake Erie, an influx of robins near my house) so something should happen in the next couple days! If we ever get a real blast of warm air and south winds things could get pretty exciting pretty quickly!


  1. I doubt that the term "mass arrival" should be applied to species such as Ross's Goose, Eurasian Wigeon and Little Gull!

    1. I think the reason why ROGO and EUWI are "mass arriving" is that smaller concentrations of waterfowl have been arriving and its easier to see these species in a group of 20 Snow Geese or American Wigeon then when the full gamut of waterfowl arrive and the flocks of 50 000 are about.

  2. Very interesting to see those records. The arrival of different birds over the spring is always one of the major signs of the seasons for me. My mother always used to say robins arrived back about Mar. 10th. I'm glad to see she was right.