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A Merlin at Old Fort Niagara

Published December 04, 2012
Tags: Life List Happenings, Merlin, Old Fort Niagara, Lake Ontario, White-winged Crossbills,

Today turned out to be a criss-crossed kind of day. I had to attend to some boring, routine medical stuff and, since I was going to be out, tucked my camera in the car with me as a "just in case"...

When I finished up with the boring part of the day, I decided there weren't going to be many more of these warm and sunny days here in Buffalo before spring - so why not try to find those White-winged Crossbills that so many birders have been posting about. The crossbills were seen at Old Fort Niagara, so I decided to make the northward trek to the state park there. The old fort and park are located in the Niagara region along the shores of Lake Ontario.

What started out as a beautifully warm and sunny day turned much cooler and much grayer very quickly. The rain started coming before I even arrived and my spirits grew dim. My trip turned out to be in vain for the crossbills; nary a one to be found. I looked HARD too! I did, however, attain an unexpected life list addition: a Merlin!

The Merlin was sitting in a barren tree in the middle of the park, paying me no never mind. I sure wish the weather had been better, but I'm posting the dismal, grainy shots anyway - just because he's a lifer!

After several shots, the Merlin noticed something over his left shoulder and, without a backward glance, took my leave.

So, my efforts and my day were totally criss-crossed - BUT - still very exciting!
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My first Merlin!
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A swift bank to the left and off he goes!
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I would have liked to have come on a better day; the historic surroundings and scenery was beautiful.