Winds of Change – That Didn’t Come

Chris and I both needed the European Golden Plover for our ABA life list and we took a chance going to Newfoundland in late April.  We needed a bit of help from Mother Nature to provide the easterly winds from the Atlantic Ocean that might push the birds to the coast.

We both arrived in St. John’s on the 5:30 flight from Halifax and because Enterprise closed at 5:30pm we couldn’t get a car (we rent from outside airport to avoid the 20% airport tax).  So we headed straight to the hotel.

Next morning we picked up the car and headed out for a few days with Jared Clarke to show us the best places to look for Plovers.

If you are interested in going to Newfoundland at any time of the year, Contact Jared Clarke at:  www.

We had a great time over the next few days and saw lots of great year birds.

American Wigeon

Boreal Chickadee

Common Gull

Female Eurasian Wigeon

Male Eurasian Wigeon

Glaucous Gull

Greater Scaup

Lesser Black-backed Gull


Mute Swan Park Resident Year Round

Northern Goshawk and One Lucky Pigeon

Red Crossbill, Newfoundland Sub-species

Breeding Ring-billed Gull

Thick-billed Murre

Female Tufted Duck

Male Tufted Duck’s

We left the next day accompanied by friend’s of Chris’s as we headed north to a town where the Plovers had been seen in previous years and there was a  pair of Pink-footed Geese in the area.

It was a fun 400km drive north but admittedly not many bird but we must have seen at least 500 robins.

The area had a few surprises but no sign of the plovers, we headed to the area where the Geese had been seen and I managed to spot them in a far corner.

Pink-footed Geese

A new best photo for my files (the dates are when I first saw the bird, ever)

The rest of the trip was pretty uneventful and we headed to Gander for the night.

First thing in the morning we headed to a nearby memorial to honor the people killed in a 1985 military plane crash. My friend Chris was supposed to be on that flight and knew many people aboard.

Along the coast we found many Icebergs, a new sighting for me.

A few new birds

Double Crested Cormorant

Great Black Backed Gull

Numerous House Sparrow’s

Chris and I

Lapland Longspur

White-winged Scoters

We got an alert that a Black-tailed Godwit had been seen in St. John’s , locally nothing much was happening and Chris needed this as a life bird, off we went.

When we arrived, Dave Brown was watching the bird.

Over the next 4 days we searched high and low for plovers but the winds or the birds just didn’t show up.

Here are a few more birds and beautiful scenery photos.

Black Duck

Black-headed Gull

Black-tailed Godwit in flight

Not Sure

Great Black-backed Gull

Herring Gull

Iceland Gull Adult

Drive to Cape Race Scenery, lovely place

Best Ever Northern Harrier

Northern Pintail

I would love to thank Jared Clarke and Family for treating us to a traditional Newfoundland meal of “Jiggs”, til next time buddy.

One last note, not only did I not get any plovers but Chris Feeney clobbered me, 14-7 in cards…the birds I understand.  Loosing at cards is too much.  Til next time, Ciao for now


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