The Bobolink bird, long a familiar sight in southern Ontario farm fields, is disappearing. Conservationists and others are joining forces to find practical ways to reverse the decline, beginning with an Ontario Recovery Strategy Series in 2013.
Did you know the Bobolink bird nesting areas are in the open grasses of our Carleton Place park by the river? Some bird enthusiasts are concerned and emailed me as to why the town seems to mow the park so early because it interferes with the Bobolink’s nesting period. I was told that Councillor Doug Black did ask the town to delay their mowing until nesting season was over. Apparently, according to some, it seemed to fall on deaf ears. Is there a reason why the grass must be cut by any specific date?
Recovery of species at risk is the process by which the decline of an endangered, threatened, or extirpated species is arrested or reversed, and threats are removed or reduced to improve the likelihood of a species’ persistence in the wild. The Province ensures the preparation of recovery strategies to meet its commitments to recover species at risk under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and the Accord for the Protection of Species at Risk in Canada.
Another area where the bobolink migrate is to the grassy fields of Couch Hill Connecticut. Every spring, endangered songbirds, including the spectacular Bobolink, migrate over 6,000 miles from the pampas of Argentina, Bolivia and Brazil. In early May, the male Bobolinks arrive and start their territorial aerial displays, using fluttery wingbeats and warbling songs. Several males will often engage in display flights at the same time.
Because of their small and declining statewide populations and their diminishing nesting habitats, Bobolinks have been listed by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection as a “Species of Special Concern” under the Connecticut Endangered Species Act.
As such, Audubon Connecticut, the state office of the National Audubon Society, has recognized Couch Hill as an Important Bird Area (IBA).
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a recognized bird area in Carleton Place as we are lucky that the Bobolinks nest here? They are already here and the town can provide a safe and inviting habitat for this increasingly rare bird.
Another tourist attraction lost? Another demise waiting to happen?