Bittern Surprise

A very rare surprise:  a migrating American bittern attempts to hide in plain sight by standing tall and straight.  It’s a very effective camouflage when they’re amongst the reeds, here not so much.  This is only the second bittern that I’ve ever seen on the Island.

Trumpeter Swan P24, Muggs Island, Island Yacht Club, IYC, Toronto Islands

Meet Molson

Meet Molson, more blandly known as Trumpeter Swan P24.  Molson was hatched at Wye Marsh as part of their Trumpeter Swan program two years ago.  All the hatchlings were named after breweries, hence the name Molson. Personally, I’m waiting for a flock of microbrews to migrate through at the end of the season.

Great blue heron with drooped wings, Doughnut Island, Toronto Islands

Droop Wing I & II

A great blue heron droops its wings to cool off on an unseasonably hot October day.

Closeup of a pair of muskrats together, Snug Harbour, Toronto Islands

Captain & Tennille

Muskrat Love!  A pair of muskrats dine together in the waters of Snug Harbour.

Muskrat having a snack, Snug Harbour, Toronto Islands

Snug Snack

A muskrat munches on a tasty morsel in the waters of Snug harbour.

Juvenile black-crowned night heron, Doughnut Island, Toronto Islands

October Juvenile

A juvenile black-crowned night heron perches in a tree on Doughnut Island.  I haven’t seen night herons for a while now, it’s surprising to see juveniles still here.

Ten painted turtles on one log, Doughnut Island, Toronto Islands

Bumps on a Log III

A bale of ten turtles bask together in the low October light off of Doughnut Island.  They’ve broken the unofficial record of six turtles in 2012 and five turtles in 2011.

Northern Map turtle basking against deep shadow, Snake Island, Toronto Islands

Sidelight Stretch

A northern map turtle basks on the feet of the Snake island bridge.

Wading Great Egret, Doughnut Island, Toronto Islands

Neck Wade

A great egret wades in the shallow waters off of Doughnut Island.

Canada Goose goslings, Forestry Island, Toronto Islands

Babes in the Woods

Some of the first Canada goose goslings rest on the shoreline of Forestry island.

Red-eared slider turtle injured by boat prop, Snug Harbour, Toronto Islands

Slider Damage 2018

A red-eared slider turtle injured by a boat prop, first imaged in 2016,  appears to be healing nicely. Click image to view larger.

Gnats covering a branch, the boardwalk, Toronto Islands

Boardwalk Masses

Gnats by the million cover tree branches on the boardwalk – cyclists beware.  Presented here in full HD, click image to view larger for all the gory details.

Melanistic garter snake, Ward's Island, Toronto Islands

Melanistic Coils

An early melanistic garter snake suns itself on a brisk March day.

Snowy Owl, Ward's Island, Toronto Islands

Yellow Stare

A snowy owl perches on a pole on Ward’s beach.

Bald eagle eating a cormorant morsel, Center Island, Toronto Islands

Down the Hatch

Another view of the Bald eagle dining on a cormorant down by St. Andrew’s.

A snowy owl stares into the camera, Ward's Beach, Toronto Islands

Yellow Stare

Another view of the beautiful snowy owl that was haunting the end of Ward’s beach.

Trumpeter swan flying over frozen Lake Ontario, Center Island, Toronto Islands

Trumpeter Blues

A lone trumpeter swan flies over forming ice during a -22°C cold snap.

Robin puffed up against cold, Ward's Island, Toronto Island

Round Robin

A robin puffs itself up to keep warm during a -22°C cold snap.

Snowy Owl, Ward's Island, Toronto Islands

Snowy Perch II

A snowy owl perches on the ice along Ward’s beach.

Bald eagle eating a cormorant, Center Island, Toronto Islands

Eagle Overload

A bald eagle tears a hapless cormorant to shreds atop one of the new sky ride towers by St. Andrews by the Lake.  The cormorant debris field spread right across the lagoon ice to the farm.

Map turtle covered in poplar fluff, Doughnut Island, Toronto Islands

Fluff Camouflage

Apparently we’re not the only ones cursed with poplar fluff.  Even map turtles basking in the Doughnut Island environs are susceptible.

Mink on shoreline of Centerville, Toronto Island Flood, Center Island, Toronto Islands

Centerville Mink

A mink tours the shoreline of Centerville, enjoying the complete solitude during the Flood of 2017.

Jimmy joking with people at the back of the Jimmy Jones Express, Gibraltar Point, Toronto Islands

JJ Style

Jimmy jokes with the peanut gallery at the back of the bus aboard the Jimmy Jones Express. Click image to view larger.

Jimmy in the middle of the crowded Jimmy Jones Express, Centre Island, Toronto Islands

Jimmy in the Crowd

Jimmy tells stories to the crowd at the back of the Jimmy Jones Express. Click image to view larger.