A New Hawk To Watch For This Fall

Just saw this in the Toronto Star - click here


Special Post - Monarch Migration Presentation

This coming Tuesday evening Terry will be doing another talk on the Monarch migration that we enjoy each fall during the Hawk Watch at Rosetta.  With 4 of Rosetta's 'tagged' Monarchs being found in Mexico earlier this year, this presentation should be quite interesting.

Fall Monarch Migration at Rosetta McClain Gardens
Presenter:  Terry Whittam
7:00PM - Tuesday April 12th, 2016
Taylor Memorial Library (Kingston Rd at Warden Ave)

Everyone is welcome.


American Kestrel's Head Stabilization

I received this short clip from Pat this morning and thought I'd share it with you.  Enjoy!

I guess when they're sitting atop a swaying tree they want to be totally focused on their potential next meal.  Amazing.


And It Continues...

Hi all,
The excitement continues! 2 more tags recovered as recorded in the latest listing from Diane Purden. Many thanks to Carol Pasternak for sending.

UBB017 Tagged Sept 21 Male .6g 52mm wing, cond 3 - recovered at El Rosario
UBA827 Tagged Sept 9, Male cond 3 - recovered at Cerro Pelon Mexico

Both tagged at Rosetta McClain Gardens in Scarboro!
That makes an unbelievable 4 recoveries! 
Good tagging

Another Special Post - Another Tag Recovered!!

Well if one wasn't amazing enough, how about two?  I was searching through more photos of Monarch butterfly tags that Brenda Dziedzic had posted to her Facebook page (Brenda's Butterfly Habitat) and I found another one of our tags from Rosetta.  This one was UBA 842.  The Monarch was tagged on September 9th, 2015, it was a male and it's overall condition was rated '3' (good).  At that time Terry had not received his measuring equipment so no weight or wing size was noted.  The tag was recovered in Mexico on February 23, 2016 by Adelina Fajardo at Cerro Pelon near the town of Macheros.  We thank Brenda, Carol Pasternak, and the other ladies for their efforts in retrieving these and all the other tags and of course, we thank the people of Mexico who work so hard to find the tags on the forest floor.  At present we still don't fully understand why the tags are being sold-off.  Once Brenda and Carol arrive back from Mexico we will see what they can tell us.


Special Post - Tag Recovered!

One of our 'tagged' Monarch butterflies has been found in Mexico!!!

An extremely excited Terry informed many of us via email late Sunday night that he had noticed one of his butterfly tags in an online photo.  The Monarch butterfly tag was in a photo that Carol Pasternak (The Monarch Butterfly Crusader) had posted to her Facebook page earlier in the day.  Carol, along with Brenda Dziedzic (Brenda's Butterfly Habitat) and several of their butterfly-loving friends are currently in Mexico up in the mountain region (Cerro Pelon) where the Monarchs spend their winters.  The area is officially designated as The Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve.  Local workers in the Reserve comb the forest floor through thousands and thousands of dead Monarchs in search of ones that have identification tags attached to them.  In turn the workers are paid money for recovered tags that they report.  Apparently, and we're not sure why just yet but tourists there buy the butterfly tags off of their tour guides - hopefully we'll get some sort of clarification on just what the heck this is all about soon!  Anyway, the tag that Terry noticed in the photo was one of his that he had purchased online, it was UBA 905, a tag that Betty (Terry's helper) had applied to a Monarch butterfly back in the fall at Rosetta.  Terry searched through his tagging records and found the following information:  the butterfly was tagged on September 18, 2015, it was a female, it weighed .57g, it's wing measurement was 60mm, and it's overall condition was rated 4 (5 being pristine), the day was sunny with a temperature of 27 degrees Celcius!  Great stuff!

Here is a slightly edited version of the photo containing the tags...

(click photo to enlarge)

Here is a map showing a 'direct-line' path from Rosetta to the wintering grounds in Mexico...

(click photo to enlarge)

The direct-line distance from Rosetta down to the wintering grounds is slightly more than 3300 kms!  We know butterflies get blown around a lot in the wind and also veer off-course for other reasons so it's extremely likely that this lady travelled much much further on her journey south.  It's just amazing how they can do it!

I'll post further details as I get them.

Congratulations to Terry and to Betty for a job well done!  How exciting!


Feb 15th - A New Raptor ID App!

Hey folks!  Thought that you might be interested in this new raptor identification app from Jerry Liguori and HawkWatch International and The Cornell Lab or Ornithology.  It's available for your android and apple devices.


Dec 15th - It's Over! Thankyou All!

LOL - The 'extended' part of our hawk watching sure didn't prove to be very fruitful at all.  Oh well, we tried.  I was at the park today for roughly two hours and it sure was quiet all around - no birds and no people!

Thankyou to everyone who came out this fall to help search, identify, and photography the birds, bugs, animals, and flowers.  What a wonderful time we had together!

Dec 9th - Hope Is Fading Fast!

LOL, if it hasn't completely gone already!  Given the wind forecast for the rest of the week, we might be done!  Anyway, I'll be down at the park today.....for a short stay if nothing else.  Might have a rarity or something show-up!


2015 Christmas Luncheon

Just want to say thankyou to everyone for another fabulous Lucheon this year.  Lots of great food and lots of great laughs had by all!  It's always nice to see everyone dressed-up and minus their hawk-watching gear!


Don't forget the Christmas Luncheon is this weekend...

Once again this year Lee has been kind enough to set up a place, date and time for our annual season-ending Christmas Luncheon.

PLACEEast Side Mario's
12 Lebovic Avenue (Eglinton Ave E & Warden Ave)
In the Eglinton Town Centre
DATE:  Sunday December 6th
TIME:  1:00 PM

Please let either Lee know via the Friends of Rosetta McClain Gardens Facebook page or myself know in the comment section at the bottom of this post or via my email if you will be attending.

Dave C
Christina & Brian
Angie & Rob
Gunnar & Vivian
Phil & the kids
Dave S

Hope to see you there!


Dec 2nd - Pileated, Great Horned, and Red-tails

Today we returned to the park for some more hawk watching but unfortunately today was not the day for that.  Instead for excitement we heard towards the north end of the park the call of a Pileated Woodpecker, a species we did not have on our fall survey of the park and always a thrill to hear.  Also, we watched in amazement as roughly 9 or 10 crows gathered to scold the heck out of a Great Horned Owl which sat in a tree down near the bottom of the bluffs.  The owl eventually moved further along the bluffs towards Bluffer's Park out of sight.  It eventually flew back and landed in a tree directly below the hawk watch and the crows all came back as well.  We also had 2 Red-tails fly overhead at 2:30pm.  Not entirely positive as to whether they were migrants or the locals.  Oh well, great to see them all the same!  Another nice sighting today was a lone Golden-crowned Kinglet which Pat found up in the pear tree.

Weather Prediction:
Dec 3rd - a mix of sun of clouds, NW 20-25km/h and gusting to 39km/h (theweathernetwork.com)

I'll be late getting to the park in the morning, so if you go, please keep track of what you see.  Thanks!

See you there,