Birds of southeastern Ontario find an excellent habitat in Southeastern Ontario for its abundance of bird feed and nesting grounds. Songbirds and shorebirds, as well as owls and birds of prey, can be found in forests, fields, and wetlands.
Southeastern Ontario offers the ideal balance of nature, culture, and cuisine, award-winning local wine, craft beer, a thriving live music scene, historical parks, lighthouses, and the breathtaking 1000 Islands. Southern Ontario refers to the Canadian province of Ontario area south of the French River and Algonquin Park.
Southeastern Ontario is a long, narrow strip of land that runs along the St. Lawrence River’s shoreline from the Quebec border to Lake Ontario and the serpentine path of the Bay of Quinte. It is connected by some of Ontario’s most cherished and historic waterways.
The Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, runs from Ottawa to Kingston before joining the St. Lawrence River. Picton, Brockville, Kingston, Gananoque, and Cornwall are just a few of the captivating cities in Southeastern Ontario.
Ontario has more than 500 recorded bird species. The following birds can be found in Ontario: Turkey Vulture, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Cedar Waxwing, Tree Swallow, Belted Kingfisher, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Pileated Woodpecker, Bald Eagle.
From the shores and wetlands of Lake Ontario to the wild cliffs of the Niagara Escarpment and limestone Alvar environments, to the natural and man-made peninsulas of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, the stunning diversity of bird species that either live here year-round, breed here in the summer, or stop over while migrating is truly astounding.
Most Adorable Birds of Southeastern Ontario
Although the area of southeastern Ontario has many different types of birds, some people still want to learn more about the common and adorable birds in southeastern Ontario. The following are some of the most adorable birds in southeastern Ontario:
1. Red-Winged Blackbirds
The red winged blackbird, one of the most numerous and colorful birds in Ontario, can be seen perched atop cattails, along soggy roadside ditches, and on telephone wires.
Glossy-black males have scarlet-and-yellow shoulder patches that they can puff up or hide depending on their level of confidence. Females have a subdued, streaky brown coloration, similar to a large, dark sparrow.
Red-winged blackbirds represent good fortune, protection, and prosperity, as well as guardian angels watching over you. The red winged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) are passerine birds found throughout North America and much of Central America.
The scientific name Agelaius phoeniceus derives from Greek and means “scarlet flock member,” referring to the male’s wing patch and the birds’ social habits. Their early and tumbling song ushers in the return of spring.
Due to their highly territorial behavior, particularly during the breeding season, red winged blackbirds do not have the best reputation among the general public. They’re obnoxious, loud, and prone to attacking anything that comes too close.
2. Blue Jays
Blue Jays are well-known for their spectacular feeding display in the autumn when they congregate in large numbers to gorge themselves on acorns before winter. Blue jays are members of the Corvidae (crow) family, which includes crows, magpies, and nutcrackers.
Blue jays are classified into four subspecies: northern blue jays, coastal blue jays, Florida blue jays, and interior blue jays. Their loud screams can be heard from afar, alerting others to the presence of predators. Blue Jays are among the noisier birds to be found in Ontario.
Blue Jays are large birds that prefer to fly in, pick up a peanut or sunflower seed, and fly away to feed. The fruit of crabapple, red mulberry, and wild cherry will attract blue jays. They have a large, stout beak that can easily crush seeds and nuts. They prefer platform or tray feeders that allow them to exit quickly.
Acorns, nuts, seeds, and berries make up their diet. During the winter, however, they change their diet to include more insects and fruits. Hawks, owls, and cats frequently prey on them.
They are very capable of adapting and can live in a variety of habitats throughout Ontario. These birds are also great mimics, frequently imitating hawks.
3. Downy Woodpecker
The Picoides pubescens is the Latin name for the Downy Woodpecker, which lives in eastern and central North America. This common Ontario bird nests primarily in the spring but can be seen throughout the year in woodlands.
In Ontario, Canada, the Downy Woodpecker is a common nesting bird. It is one of the smallest woodpecker species in North America, measuring between 7-9 inches in length. Except for their red caps, they are mostly black and white.
Red feathers cover the crowns of young Downies of both sexes, though the color is more extensive in males and sometimes absent in females. The patch’s size varies geographically and, on occasion, among individual nest-mates. The feathers are usually red-tipped rather than entirely red.
Its small size allows it to forage on weed stalks as well as in large trees. It frequently joins roving mixed flocks of chickadees, nuthatches, and other birds in the woods during the winter.
Downy Woodpeckers build their nests in dead trees or dead parts of living trees. They usually use a small stub (around 7 inches in diameter) that leans away from the vertical and has the entrance hole on the underside.
4. Mourning Dove
Mourning Doves can be found in deciduous and coniferous forests, weedy fields, parks, roadsides, and cities. They have a brownish-gray back and a lighter underside. Females have a paler and grayer complexion than males.
The mourning dove is named after its sad and haunting cooing sound. Its call is sometimes confused with that of an owl. The mourning dove’s wings make a whistling sound when it flies. Every year, mourning doves have three broods. The female lays two eggs, one in the morning and one at night, and the father sits on the nest during the day while the mother sleeps.
Mourning Doves are frequent visitors to bird feeders! Try putting out their favorite foods, such as millet, shelled sunflower seeds, Nyjer seeds, cracked corn, and safflower, to attract them. Mourning Doves require a flat surface to feed on, so trays or platforms are the best feeders for them.
They’re probably most at ease feeding on the ground, so make sure to leave plenty of food there as well. Although they visit in smaller numbers each time, the total number of Mourning Doves in Maine is stable.
5. Northern Cardinal
Northern Cardinals are distinguished by their red feathers with a black pattern on the crest, wings, and tail. These birds are common in Ontario but can be found throughout North America. They typically consume insects and seeds. They typically consume insects and seeds.
Northern cardinals are widely recognized and adored creatures in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. They typically eat insects and seeds. The Northern Cardinal also feeds on a variety of seeds at bird feeders, but corn, oats, safflower, and especially sunflower seeds appear to be particularly popular with the Northern Cardinal.
Cardinals have played numerous roles in mythology and literature throughout the centuries, whether they represent love, and loyalty, or are regarded as spiritual messengers from the spirit world.
Cardinals are not uncommon. Neither the red cardinal nor his buffy-brown companion is uncommon. Today, there are over 120 million breeding cardinals, and the number is steadily increasing. If you live in their range, you have a good chance of seeing one.
Cardinals are extremely loyal animals. Many people believe seeing a cardinal is a sign of good fortune, loyalty, or even a spiritual message. According to Native American legend, if a cardinal is seen, the individual will have good luck within 12 days of the sighting.
6. Dark Eyed Juncos
Dark eyed Juncos are eye-catching little sparrows that flit about the forest floors of the western mountains and Canada before migrating to the rest of North America for the winter. A dark-eyed junco shells sunflower seeds beneath a feeder, usually a forerunner of wintry weather and snowy days.
Dark-eyed Juncos are among North America’s most common forest birds. Look for them while walking through the woods, as well as in flocks at your feeders or on the ground beneath them. According to recent estimates, the total population of juncos is around 630 million people.
Juncos vary across the country, but in general, they’re dark grey or brown birds with pink bills and white outer tail feathers that flash open and close periodically, especially in flight.
Juncos are granivorous, ground-feeding birds that primarily eat seeds and grains. The favorites are hulled sunflower seed, white proso millet, and cracked corn. Because they eat close to the ground, a low platform feeder or open tray is ideal.
To move along the ground, dark eyed juncos usually hop or walk. During the autumn and winter seasons, they are very social. During these months, juncos congregate in groups of 15 to 25 birds. These flocks are frequently found with American tree sparrow flocks (Spizella arborea).
Dark eyed Juncos breed in coniferous or mixed-coniferous forests throughout Canada, the western United States, and the Appalachian Mountains. During the winter, they can be found in open woodlands, fields, parks, roadside ditches, and backyards.
7. Hairy Woodpecker
These birds are frequently seen pecking at trees in search of food. The Hairy Woodpecker is a large woodpecker that ranges in size from 17 to 21 inches. The male and female are different in color and size, with the female being smaller.
They have a white head and neck, a black and white barred back, wings, and tail, and a black and white tail. The long, thread-like white feathers that run down the middle of the Hairy Woodpecker’s black back give it its name. This species resembles the Downy Woodpecker but has a larger bill.
The Hairy Woodpecker’s most common call is a short, sharp peek note similar to that of Downy Woodpeckers, but slightly lower pitched and often more emphatic. Hairy Woodpeckers also make a whinny or rattle sound. This call is similar to that of the Downy Woodpecker, but it does not descend in pitch at the end.
With their erect, straight-backed posture on tree trunks and cleanly striped heads, Hairy Woodpeckers have a somewhat soldierly appearance. Look for them at suet or sunflower feeders in your backyard, and listen for them whinnying from woodlots, parks, and forests.
Hairy Woodpeckers will occasionally drink sap leaking from sapsucker wells in the bark. They’ve also been seen pecking at sugar cane in order to drink the sweet juice.
Hairy Woodpeckers occasionally follow Pileated Woodpeckers and appear when they hear the heavy sounds of a pileated excavation. The Hairy Woodpecker investigates the deep holes left by the pileated, capturing insects that the pileated missed.
8. House Sparrows
In Ontario, the House Sparrow is a common bird. It can be found in various habitats, including forests, fields, and other natural areas. In Ontario, most house sparrows prefer to live in human-altered environments such as buildings and gardens.
House sparrows are distinguished by their brown striped heads and chestnut-colored breast patches. House sparrows are some of our most common birds, along with two other introduced species, the European Starling and the Rock Pigeon.
Their constant presence outside our doors makes them easy to overlook, and their propensity to evict native birds from nest boxes makes some people dislike them. But House Sparrows, with their ability to live so close to us, are simply byproducts of our own success.
The House Sparrow frequently bathes in the dust. Its body feathers are covered in soil and dust as if it were bathing in water. A sparrow may make a small depression in the ground while doing so, and this spot is sometimes defended against other sparrows.
The House Sparrow prefers to nest in man-made structures such as building eaves or walls, street lights, and nest boxes rather than natural nest sites such as tree holes. House Sparrows eat mostly grains and seeds, as well as livestock feed and discarded food in cities.
Corn, oats, wheat, and sorghum are among the crops they consume. Ragweed, crabgrass, and other grasses, as well as buckwheat, are examples of wild foods. House Sparrows will readily consume birdseed such as millet, milo, and sunflower seeds.
House sparrow populations are declining due to unfriendly architecture in our homes, chemical fertilizers in our crops, noise pollution that disrupts acoustic ecology, and noxious exhaust fumes from vehicles, according to conservationists.
9. Black-capped Chickadee
Black-capped Chickadee can be found in backyard bird feeders. They frequently forage in mixed feeding flocks, making it easy to spot them. Gray wings on the outside with light buffy flanks and a contrasting head pattern of a black cap, white cheek, and black throat.
Because of its oversized round head, tiny body, and curiosity about everything, including humans, this bird is almost universally regarded as “cute.” The chickadee’s black cap and bib, white cheeks, grey back, wings, and tail, and whitish underside with buffy sides set it apart from other birds.
Bird feeders are excellent for attracting Black-capped Chickadees! In fact, they will be the first birds to visit if you put up a new bird feeder because they are curious about anything new in their territory. Black-capped Chickadees are also known for being inquisitive and friendly wild birds. It’s actually quite simple to entice one to eat bird seed directly from your hand.
Chickadees prefer tray, tube, or hopper feeders with black oil sunflower seeds, hulled sunflower seeds, shelled peanuts, suet, and peanut butter. Chickadees live in breeding pairs during the breeding season, but they are very social during the winter.
Sunflower, peanuts, and suet are the best foods to use. Because of their small size and athletic ability, these birds can use almost any type of feeder! Its habit of investigating people and everything else in its home territory, as well as its proclivity to find bird feeders, make it one of the first birds most people learn about.
10. American Robin
American Robins, the quintessential early bird, are common sights on lawns across North America, where they frequently pull earthworms from the ground. Robins are quite well known for their reddish-orange breasts, joyful song, and late-winter arrival.
Though they are common in towns and cities, American Robins can also be found in more remote areas such as mountain forests and the Alaskan wilderness. Robins are abundant primarily due to their ability to forage, nest, and live in almost any natural and man-made habitat. The robin’s natural habitat was open woodlands and forest edges.
Although robins are thought to herald the arrival of spring, many American Robins spend the entire winter in their breeding range. You’re less likely to see them because they spend more time roosting in trees and less time in your yard.
American Robins are friendly songbirds that are naturally drawn to human-populated areas. The grass provides an excellent feeding ground for earthworms, and your home provides a safe haven for them.
11. Red-breasted Nuthatches
Red-breasted nuthatches are found in conifer forests throughout Canada, the Northeastern United States, the Appalachians, Alaska, and the mountains of the West. During the winter, most northern populations migrate south.
Their common name is derived from their habit of jamming large nuts and acorns into tree bark and then whacking them with their sharp bill to “hatch” out the seed from the inside. A small, compact bird with a sharp expression and a long, pointed bill.
Red-breasted Nuthatches have very short tails and almost no neck; their bodies are plump or barrel-chested, and their short, broad wings.
Red-breasted Nuthatches are blue-gray birds with patterned heads that include a black cap and a stripe through the eye that is broken up by a white stripe over the eye. The underparts are a rich rusty-cinnamon color, which is paler in females.
Nuthatches are primarily insectivorous, but they will frequent bird feeders in the fall and winter for nuts, sunflower seeds, mealworms, suet, and peanut butter. Red-breasted Nuthatches are primarily found in coniferous forests and mountains.
They can be found in spruce, fir, pine, hemlock, larch, and western red cedar, as well as aspens and poplars. They can also be found in forests of oak, hickory, maple, birch, and other deciduous trees in northeastern North America.
12. American Goldfinch
This attractive little finch, the state bird of New Jersey, Iowa, and Washington is a frequent visitor to feeders, where it feeds primarily on sunflower and nyjer. Goldfinches frequently congregate with Pine Siskins and Common Redpolls. Males in the spring are brilliant yellow and shiny black with a hint of white.
Females and all winter birds are duller in appearance but can be identified by their conical bill, pointed, notched tail, wingbars, and lack of streaking. During molts, they appear strangely patchy.
The female American goldfinch is slightly smaller than males. Her back is olive, her sides are buff, and she has a greenish-yellow forehead, throat, and underside. Her wings and tail are black with white wing bars, her legs and feet are light brown, and her bill is orange.
Most North American birds breed later than American Goldfinches. They do not begin nesting until June or July, when milkweed, thistle, and other plants have produced their fibrous seeds, which goldfinches incorporate into their nests and feed to their young.
Brown-headed Cowbird eggs may hatch in an American Goldfinch nest, but the nestling rarely survives more than three days. Cowbird chicks simply cannot survive on the all-seed diet that goldfinch chicks are fed.
A goldfinch visit could indicate that someone thinks highly of you and wishes you the best. When a loved one wishes you luck and success, that positive energy may come to you in the form of a goldfinch encounter.
These birds are the most visible and well-known wildlife in Ontario as a whole. Birds are ecologically significant because they provide critical natural services such as insect pest control, plant pollination, and seed dispersal to forestry and agriculture.
Many people find great joy, fulfillment, and inspiration in watching and listening to these birds. However, these birds are also an important parts of Canada and southeastern Ontario’s environment and its protection.
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