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Kingsville Migration Festival 2016
Lens: DA 18-135 WR and DA 21 Ltd Camera: K-30 Photo Location: Kingsville, Ontario 
Posted By: Tako Kichi, 10-15-2016, 09:43 PM

Every year our town holds it's 'Migration Festival' to celebrate the start of the annual bird migration to the south. Being the most southern town in mainland Canada means we get literally hundreds of different types of birds passing through at this time of year and they tend to stay for a day or two while they build up the resources and energy needed to face the 35 mile open water crossing to the USA.

Numerous events take place throughout the town as part of the festivities and as it was such a beautiful, warm day (70F/21C which is unusually nice for this time of year) we decided to go down to the local park to see what was happening down there.

The first thing that caught our eye was a display being put on by a local falconry group who had brought along their hawks and owls.

Here are a couple of kids interacting with one of the hawks....

That poor little guy was having a hard time holding his arm out with the hawk on the end of it and it kept sinking lower and lower until the handler stepped in to rescue him!

Here's one of the handlers with a great horned owl....

While the handlers were interacting with the audience I got a chance to get some shots of the birds in the 'rest' area they had set up. The birds were under a canopy on their own perches while they waited for their turn to display.

The snowy owl had an interesting back-story, she had been brought in as a 'rescue' after being found injured in a field. The falconry group nursed her back to health but unfortunately she can never be released back into the wild as she had to have half of her right wing amputated due to her injuries. On the plus side, as the handler pointed out, she now gets very well fed without having to hunt for her dinner!

After the bird show was over we decided to wander across the park and came upon a guy giving buggy rides around the lower level.....

.....meanwhile on the upper level you could catch a train ride!

If all this activity was too much you could enjoy a quiet game of pumpkin tic-tac-toe (or pumpkin bowling, pumpkin shot put and other pumpkin related sports) .....

..... or if that was too much you could just relax at one of the numerous picnic tables scattered around the park......

After a quick pit-stop at the washrooms we wandered down to the beach just in time to see an egret looking for a late afternoon meal......

Here's a shot looking due south across the lake (Erie that is), it's 35 miles across open water to Ohio in the USA.

That 'island' just off the point is actually a floating duck blind used by hunters to lie in wait for waterfowl as they attempt to migrate south.

Finally here's a shot looking to the south-west, next stop Toledo, Ohio more than 45 miles away as the duck flies!

All shots taken with the DA 18-135mm WR except the last two which were taken with my DA 21 Ltd.

I hope you enjoyed sharing our afternoon out at 'Migration Fest 2016' as much as we did being there.
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10-16-2016, 02:33 AM   #2
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Essex County, Ontario
Posts: 640
I live less than 15 minutes from there but, as life is busy, I've never been around at Migration Festival. Thanks for showing us in photos.
10-16-2016, 08:20 AM   #3
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Tako Kichi's Avatar

Join Date: May 2013
Location: SW Ontario, Canada (ex-pat Brit)
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All the events are on again today (apart from the parade through the town) so there's still time to take a look.

Nice to see we are not the only Pentax shooters in Essex County too.
10-16-2016, 08:29 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Near Algonquin Park
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Thet is just too cool.... a long drive for me but I'll look to see when it is next year. I book marked the page for this year's festival to remind me. We don't have so many festivals up here in Whitney... we have to go other places for them.

10-16-2016, 10:50 AM   #5
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: SW Ontario, Canada (ex-pat Brit)
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It's always the third weekend in October Norm. In the past we tended to visit the wood carvers show and the arts and crafts sales event (a huge show that filled the entire lower floor corridors and gymnasium at the local high school) but decided to go down to the park this year as it was such a nice day.
10-16-2016, 12:24 PM   #6
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Alas, filled up day again.
Maybe I should follow Norm's lead. He'll come here and I'll see what's going on somewhere else too. If it's planned ahead and I commit to spending money to get there I would attend; whatever it is.

And, I know of a handful of other Pentax people also around here.

Last edited by From1980; 10-16-2016 at 12:31 PM.
10-17-2016, 04:32 PM   #7
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Glen Mills, PA
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What a great opportunity to get some up close shots of birds that normally don't let you. Love the snowy owl.

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