Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Louth Conservation Area:Revisit I

Late Sunday afternoon, Jean and I returned to Louth Conservation Area to check on the progress of the wildflowers. During our initial visit on March 28 only a small number of flowering Hepatica were found. Two weeks have passed since then and the Hepatica are becoming more apparent. The Trilliums are slowly emerging from the forest floor, some with buds that likely will flower in the next week. The only other flowering plant detected was that of a small cluster of Mayapple.

Mayapple, Louth Conservation Area, Spring of 2001

The number of bird species observed was over twice that of our last visit. So much for stating there is little activity in the conservation area. I guess I just need to visit more often?

Dark-eyed Junco were very active in the Cedars near the parking lot and a pair of White-breasted Nuthatch were seen as we started along the side trail, the male offering the female a gift in the form of a seed. Returning along the Bruce Trail, we found a pair of Brown Creeper and a Northern Flicker. Our first flicker for 2009 was observed on Good Friday while travelling a rural road from Welland to Thorold. The Bruce Trail exits the conservation area 100 metres west of the parking lot and continues west along Staff Avenue. I plan on discussing sections of the Bruce Trail east and west of Louth Conservation Area in future postings. We returned to our car, once again observing a high amount of activity in the Cedars. A pair of Golden-crowned Kinglet (#82 for the year list) were quickly jumping from branch to branch while the quietest Blue Jay ever, sat perfectly still and partially hidden from view, requiring a moment to verify the identification. Yes, there I've said it! A Blue Jay, had me guessing.

During our next visit to Louth Conservation Area, we plan on descending the escarpment to view Louth Falls and explore the trails for flowering Trilliums, the provincial flower of Ontario.

Louth Conservation Area, Spring of 2001


  1. Sounds like a neat place! I was at a small nature preserve near Rochester, NY last weekend and also saw the quietest Blue Jay ever. (S)he sat completely still and quiet behind a wall of Cedar branches - visible, but only if you looked slowly and carefully. I only found it because I was trying to find the loudest Northern Cardinal ever, who perched a few branches below.

    I wondered about that Blue Jay's behavior. How often do you see them that subdued?

  2. noflickster,

    I believe that was a first for subdued Blue Jay. West Nile? They are usually quite vocal when I have observed in the past.

    Though one of the smaller conservations areas run by the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, Louth is one of my favourites.