As summer winds to a close, bird migration season begins! Birds will make the long journey from Ontario to their overwintering habitats.
Many hawks, hummingbirds, waterfowl and warblers are already on the move. The coming months will showcase scores more. During a leisurely evening stroll you may spot swallows, swifts or nighthawks as they swoop and dart after the insects they eat. If you head to Lake Ontario or Lake Erie, you may see a turkey vulture or even a golden eagle.
Though a large portion of avian travellers have drab plumage in the autumn and no longer sing their distinctive mating song, many birders consider the season an exciting and challenging opportunity to hone their identification skills.
Test your skill in identifying some of the bird species that are getting ready to make the trek with our bird identification quiz.
Visit ontarionature.org/breedingbirdatlas to learn more about the birds of Ontario or visit the ON Nature magazine site for a beginners guide on when and where to see migrating bird species this fall.
Noah Cole, Ontario Nature’s communications technician, enjoys birding, nature and wildlife photography.