Cross-country (SNBU) Checkup – November 13th

Sunset at a baited site by the shore of the St-Lawrence in Ste-Luce, QC. Photo MP Laplante

Sunset at a baited site by the shore of the St-Lawrence in Ste-Luce, QC. Photo MP Laplante


 (November 10th)

SNBU began trickling through south-central Manitoba Oct. 9.  Most reports are of groups of 2-20, with one report of 40, one of 69, and two of 200: the first Oct.18 on the west shore of Lake Winnipeg at Riverton Sandy Bar IBA; the second Oct. 25 just sw of Winnipeg. (Same flock??).  As in previous years, they appear to travel mainly between the lakes, favouring the shorelines.  But this could be a bias in reporting.  Not one seen here (2 1/2 miles west of Camp Morton) yet this year, but a few individuals reported at the lakeshore.

All the best, Bill Maciejko, Camp Morton Manitoba


(November 11th)

Hello all!  It is nice to “meet” you Marie-Pier!

We have had two sightings of SNBU at Kerns so far this season.  We had a blustery Halloween day and along with the ghosts and goblins blew in a flock of about 300 SNBU.  I took some time to watch the flock with my bins and saw several LALO in the flock as well.   On Sunday Nov. 9th, another snowy day, I went to school to grab some materials and sure enough the Flock was back! Today school was cancelled for a snow day… I think the birds may be here to stay.  The kids will start baiting the fields soon. The kids are super excited! Joanne Goddard, Timiskaming Shores

(November 10th)

Hello Fellow SNBU banders, Here in Essex County we have a new challenge for this coming winter’s SNBU season, namely the loss of our East Harrow banding location.Our host was hit by the love bug and moved out of her rental house on farm property that had been our SNBU banding home for the past few seasons.We have a lead on a replacement location and hope to announce that we will be continuing our winter efforts going forward.Stay tuned for the next exciting installment.

PS: The Raptor Watch at Holiday Beach has heard SNBU’s flying over…can snow be far behind ? Bob Hall-Brooks, Essex County

(November 12th)

Good morning to all,

I saw my first Snow Bunting of the season on October 22nd, just a kilometer up the road from my house on Sheridan Rapids Road, in Lanark, Ontario.Yesterday, I spotted a flock of about 12 Snow Buntings in an open gravel pit, about 3 kilometers from my house, on Iron Mine Road. That is the 3rd year in a row that I have spotted Buntings at that same spot, around the same time of year. I watched them for several minutes, as they were hopping about on a bit gravel mound. I’m not sure why they pick that spot; perhaps it resembles their nesting grounds on Baffin Island, or it’s a like a benchmark or a point of reference when they first arrive in the area?

I haven’t seen any on my property yet, but the white millet is on the ground and you’ll be the first to know when they show up!

Have a good day, Lise Balthazar, Lanark, Ontario

 (November 10th)

Saw a lovely flock of about 50 Snow Buntings near Port Elgin on the Bruce today. I am already getting “the itch”………….. David Lamble, Fergus


(November 10th)

Not much to report here from Newfoundland, though there have been some reports of SNBUs in eastern Newfoundland and one report from western Newfoundland over the past 2 weeks. Best, Darroch Whitaker, Rocky Harbour


 (November 11th)

I have not spotted big flocks in my area yet, but a few groups of 10-100 individuals are often observed in nearby fields. I have not started baiting yet, but should start to do so soon. As soon as the ground remains covered with snow, I will start trapping. Benoit Gendreau – Berthier-sur-Mer, QC

(November 13th)

And here in Rimouski area, Qc, I saw the first few lone SNBU’s travelers back on around October 23rd. Small flocks of migrating SNBU’s have been a common sight along the shores of the St-Lawrence in the last couple weeks as well. I have started baiting a site this week right by the river in Ste-Luce and 2 buntings were feeding on the corn patch today. I will start baiting another site this week end. We had kind of a snow storm last week end and more snow falling this week. It has melted now but it’s a matter of days before snow falls again and stays for good… And with it, the snow buntings… Marie-Pier



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