Symphony of Birds

Everyone agrees that when it comes to music, nothing beats a live performance. It’s even more true when it comes to bird sounds.

As the sixteen of us walked the 5 km stretch along Saunders Lake, we listened to the distinctive and familiar calls of red-winged blackbirds, Canada geese, ducks, and gulls. Those were the sounds we knew.  Or as Gail described it, the “vocal conversation.”

There were many more bird calls that were not so familiar.

The first unusual birds we saw were several pairs of black and white ducks. These turned out to be the tufted duck (Aythya fuligula), which are increasing in numbers.Tufted duck, Saunders lake

Next, we watched an American eagle soar and then land in its huge nest across the lake.

While we rested under the still-leafless trees, swallows swooped in overhead. Jerry pointed out the sound of sandhill cranes high above us, but most of us we were too comfortable eating our lunches, or engaged in conversation, to get up and have a look.

A red-tailed hawk screeched at us as we headed back.

The total hike was around 10 km.

View our pictures on Flickr

Saunders Lake Hike group

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