Our guided hikes give you the chance to spend some more time with park naturalists and take you through some of the most beautiful trails that we are lucky to have here at MacGregor Point. Usually our hikes go through Lake Ridge Trail, the Tower Trail or the Huron Fringe Boardwalk. This gives everyone the opportunity to experience many different habitats with widely varying flora and fauna. 

 

 

Schedule of Events

 

The 18th Annual Huron Fringe Birding Festival will be held May 22 to May 25 and May 28 to 31, 2015.

Online registration for 2015 will be available on February 1 (12am) to May 21 (6pm) and again on May 26 (12am) to May 27 (6pm). 

Be sure to register on-line in a timely manner as events can fill quickly.

To give you an idea of the broad scope of events available, the 2014 events are still posted below.

 

The 2015 schedule of events and pricing will be posted January 15, 2015 for viewing only.  Click on the leader's name to learn more about this person!

 

 

 


Friday May 23, 2014
All Day
Hot Spots of the Lower Bruce Alfred Raab
A01 6:30am to 4:30pm

Areas we will visit are: Sauble Beach for a chance to see Piping Plovers, Rankin River forest, Boat Lake, Isaac Lake, Sky Lake and grassland around Mar.

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Species: Piping Plover, Black Tern, Osprey, various warbler species

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Rock Stars of the City Peter Middleton
A02 8:00am to 4:30pm

Car-pooling is esential for this excursion as parking is limited in some spots.  The Grey / Bruce area hosts 50 species of ferns which represent 2/3 of the ferns found in Ontario.  On this outing Peter will guide you through some of the premiere spots of this area.  Centred in the Owen Sound area, our major stops will be Black's Park and Inglis Falls.  These destinations are located on the Niagara Escarpment.  Lunch will be at an outdoor pavillion in Harrison Park.

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Species: Hart's Tongue Fern, Walking Fern, Maidenhair Spleenwort, Ostrich Fern

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Morning
Birding MacGregor - Old Fields & Trails Judith King
A03 6:00am to 11:30am

A morning walk through the varied habitats along the Deer Run and Rotary Way trails in the northeast corner of the Park.  These are infrequently birded areas.  

Species: American Redstart, Black-throated Green Warbler, Eastern Bluebird, Great-crested Flycatcher

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding MacGregor's Southern Boundary James Turland
A04 6:30am to 11:30am

This road trip explores the forest, wetlands and abandoned farms along the park’s southern boundary.  A walk to Ducks Unlimited pond includes visits to the viewing tower and bird blind. 

Species: Blue-winged Warbler, Warbling Vireo, Canada Warbler, Common Raven

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding MacGregor Marilyn Ohler
A05 7:00am to 11:30am

Learn more about birding and MacGregor Point Provincial Park by joining festival veteran, Marilyn Ohler on a morning walk in the park.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Wonders of the Wetland Matthew Cunliffe
A06 1:30pm

Do you ever wonder how to study the ecology of a wetland?  Join Matt as he takes a look at the Ducks Unlimited wetland.  Participants will have the opportunity to evaluate invertebrate populations.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Tree Identification Using Leaves and Needles Jim Coles
A07 1:30pm

We will identify the conifers and the hardwoods in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre by leaf and needle characteristics. The use of botanical keys will differentiate between species.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

The Geology & Geomorphology of the Huron Fringe Norbert Woerns
A08 1:30pm

This driving and walking field trip will include stops at the Algonquin and Nipissing bluffs and a walk along the Detroit River Group outcrops to Gunn Point at Inverhuron Park. 

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Getting Intimate with Nature: Re-Discover Nature Through Videos Kerry Jarvis
A09 1:30pm

Living in a “YouTube” generation creates exciting opportunities for naturalists to capture and preserve their experiences through video. In this new workshop, Kerry will share with you nature video vignettes that he has created from outings and from his gardens.

Evening
Identifying Hawks In Flight Fred Jazvac
A10 7:15pm

Improve your raptor identification skills by sorting through shapes, sizes, structures and behaviour of the flying predators we see above. 

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
6:00am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

The Southampton Rotary Club has available for purchase a variety of barbequed items and drinks.

Saturday May 24, 2014
All Day
South Shoreline Tour Marshall Byle
A11 6:30am to 3:30pm

Marshall will include stops at varied habitats between MacGregor Point & Inverhuron Provincial Park following the Lake Huron shoreline.  

Species: Common Moorhen, Orchard Orioles

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Saugeen High Joy Albrecht
A12 7:00am to 3:30pm

The Amphitheatre gardens, high above the Saugeen River will be the setting for this hike. We will be observing spring migrants and many nesting species, shore birds, and raptors.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Unique Habitats Along the Lake Huron Shoreline Judith Jones
A13 8:30am to 3:30pm

Judith is an expert on dune ecology and many local species at risk.  Your morning will be spent learning about the plants along the sand dunes at Inverhuron; in the afternoon you will check out the near-shoreline and forest habitats at MacGregor Point.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Morning
Sex & the Single Warbler Mark Wiercinski
A14 6:00am to 11:30am

The varied habitats in MacGregor Point Provincial Park provide the backdrop for the dawn chorus and this hike by a favourite leader.  Mark will challenge and entertain you as you look and listen for warblers and other songbirds. Then we will drive to the Ducks Unlimited wetland to see and hear waterfowl, bitterns, herons and egrets.  A walk on the concession road adjacent to the wetland usually results in views of Scarlet Tanagers, Indigo Buntings and more warblers. Mark has a keen ear and identifies birds by song, habitat and sight.

Read more about this presentation on our blog: http://huronfringefest.wordpress.com

Species: Virginia Rail, Sora, Blue-winged Warbler, American Redstart, Ovenbird, Mourning Warbler, Canada Warbler, Indigo Bunting, Scarlet Tanager

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Around the Edge of MacGregor Mike Burrell
A15 6:30am to 11:30am

Join Mike from Bird Studies Canada for a morning of birding some of the hotspots near MacGregor Point. Several warbler species, Indigo Buntings, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks as well as several other unique species are likely finds.

Species: Mourning Warbler, Golden-winged Warbler, Scarlet Tanager

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding the Old Shore Road Trail Richard Tofflemire
A16 7:00am to 11:30am

Campground areas, dune habitat and the Lake Huron shoreline will be featured on this morning hike.

Species: Great Crested Flycatcher, American Redstart, Veery

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

The Tale of the Piping Plover Stewart Nutt
A17 7:30am to 11:30am

Piping Plover behaviours including: courtship, feeding, life history, territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and/or explained during your time with these birds. Become a ‘Plover Lover’.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Biking MacGregor Doug Martin
A18 1:30pm to 3:30pm

Follow Doug along a variety of the extensive biking trails in the Park.  We will visit many overlooked areas of the Park to investigate the landscape features and the geomorphic forces that created them.  See how these have influenced the local flora and fauna and the resulting use by Aboriginal people and European settlers of the Park and vicinity.  We will also look at any birds we see along the way.  Bring your own bike or check with the Park store for rental availability.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Spring's Insect Awakening Andalyne Tofflemire
A19 1:30pm to 3:30

Insects are awakening from their winter dormancy; but how do they cope with the extremes of spring temperatures? Andalyne will help you understand the various strategies used.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Make Your Sightings Count Mike Burrell
A20 1:30pm to 3:30pm

The Citizen Science project eBird is a comprehensive online bird database that is revolutionizing how birders go about their business. Contributing is simple. Other Citizen Science projects will also be discussed.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

O'Keefe Grange - A Heritage Apple Farm Bill O'Keefe / Lynne O'Keefe
A21 1:30pm to 3:30pm

The modern mono-culture style of agriculture threatens heritage varieties of plants. Find out how one local grower is propagating apples that were popular 100 years ago and keeping them from extinction.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Tips and Techniques on Successfully Photographing Trees Kerry Jarvis
A22 1:30pm to 3:30pm

Trees are often seen as a backdrop to a scene. Join Kerry in this new photography workshop hike that will explore and inspire photographers to look at trees differently.  Intermediate-to-Experienced DSLR users.  Bring DSLR camera, tripod, lenses-zoom & close-up.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Evening
4:30pm Social & 5:30pm Banquet & Presentation - Birds & some of their Mysteries David Lamble
A23 4:30pm

David is no ordinary bird lover.  He will talk about bird intelligence – bird vision and his passion, bird banding, and how they all contribute to our understanding of birds.  

Read more about this presentation on our blog: http://huronfringefest.wordpress.com

Held at St. Joseph's Parish Hall in Port Elgin, chicken buffet - Harrigan's Catering. Please contact the registrar prior to May 1 to discuss dietary restrictions.

 

 

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

LIVE BIRD BANDING DEMONSTRATIONS Brendan Toews
6:00am to noon

Join our on-site bird bander Brendan Toews as he captures and bands festival birds. 

Banding helps researchers understand dispersal and migration patterns, behaviour and social structure, lifespan and survival rate, reproductive success and population growth.

Banding is a skilled process that requires extreme patience, dexterity, gentleness and organizational and problem-solving abilities. Observing experienced banders is an impressive sight. They can hold a bird in one hand while using the other to maneuver a tiny metal circular band onto a pair of banding pliers, open it up, get it into the proper opening in the nose of the pliers and attach it to the bird's leg - all in a matter of seconds. The pliers are fashioned so that it's impossible to squeeze the bird's leg. The birds must be captured, banded, measured, weighed and released in a timely manner so as to minimize trauma. Integrity plays an important role in banding. Banders follow a strict code of ethics that spells out their responsibilities to minimize stress, injury and death of captured birds.

After extraction the bird is put into a breathable opaque cloth bag used for transporting birds from the netting sites to the banding station. There is one bird per bag, and when birds are waiting to be banded, the bags are always hung up on a peg and never placed on the ground. As soon as the bird is banded and the data recorded, the bird is released.

Banders must keep meticulous records. The age and sex of the bird, as determined by the bander through measurement of the wing chord and observation of plumage, is recorded. The species is recorded, along with the weight and estimated fat content. The latter is a sign of migration readiness and overall health. The number and size of the band used, the bander's initials and the number of retraps. Sanitation standards are strictly adhered to in an effort to prevent disease transmission among either birds or humans.

This data is compiled with the day's total captures, the open and close time of the station, wind and weather conditions, volunteer hours, the number of visitors, the number of hours each mist net was used, the number and species of birds caught in each net, and the number of birds observed around the park through sight and sound.

For the safety of the birds, bird banding is weather dependent.

Read more about Brendan on our blog: http://huronfringefest.wordpress.com

MOTHING AT THE VISITOR CENTRE Andalyne Tofflemire
9:30pm

Andalyne will be setting up a black light to attract moths around 9:30 pm outside the Visitor Centre.  You will have the opportunity to view moths attracted to this light both late in the evening and early on Sunday morning.  This activity is weather dependent.

Eagle Optics
11:00am to 1:00pm

During the lunch break Eagle Optics will have binoculars and telescopes for purchase.

Information Booths
11:00am to 1:00pm

Various nature organizations will have information booths set up near the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

The Southampton Rotary Club has available for purchase a variety of barbequed items and drinks.

Sunday May 25, 2014
All Day
Flowerpot Island - A Remote Georgian Bay Habitat Don Wilkes
A24 6:45am to 4:30pm

THIS EVENT ONLY HAS ONE SPOT AVAILABLE AND CANNOT BE OVER-BOOKED.

This excursion will take you around one of Canada's remarkable islands, famous for its rock flowerpots, caves and rare orchids. Water birds and late migrants may be seen. If Georgian Bay is too rough, the tour instead will be on the mainland and will focus on the national park escarpment shore near Cyprus Lake.

Additional fee includes National Park admission and jet boat transportation to the island. The jet boat will be leaving at 9:15 am sharp.  

PLEASE ADVISE THE REGISTRAR if you wish to meet the group at the Blue Heron Dock in Tobermory at 8:30 am.  A24 Flower Pot Trip: Blue Heron dock in Tobermory @ 8:30 am:   Blue Heron has a parking lot just north of the dock and their new office is right on highway 6 one block past the turn for the harbour.  Ample parking there.

 

Difficulty: Difficult -- Walking on trails that have uneven terrain. There may be some walking off-trail. You should be able to negotiate walking on slippery surfaces, where there is unsure footing or where you are climbing over rocks and logs.

Hidden Treasures of the Huron Coast Peter Middleton
A25 7:00am to 4:30pm

This outing will explore Lake Huron coastlines, both present and past, north of Sauble Falls. You will visit Ontario Nature's oldest reserve, Petrel Point; and their newest, Sauble Dunes.

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Morning
Wrestling with Warblers Mark Wiercinski
A26 6:00am to 11:30am

Warblers are very annoying to identify! They move too much and hide behind the most inconvenient leaves and branches. Mark’s humour and tips about habitat and sounds will definitely keep you interested. 

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding the J/I Line James Turland
A27 6:30am to 11:30am

We will view grasslands from the roadside and take a few short hikes. In the past Upland Sandpiper, Bobolink, Grasshopper and Clay-colored Sparrow have been seen.

Species: Wilson's Snipe, Savannah Sparrow, Field Sparrow, Eastern Meadowlark

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Up With the Birds Doug Martin
A28 8:00am to 11:30am

The Ducks Unlimited wetland is a former beaver pond which was inadvertently drained over 25 years ago and rehabilitated by Ducks Unlimited Canada in the mid-1980s. Today, this area is a mix of cedar and wetland forests.  This hike has been a tradition since before the beginning of the Huron Fringe Birding Festival.  While not a true ‘early’ hike compared to others now offered in the festival, it continues as an event geared for a wide level of birders who simply want to enjoy the MacGregor Point landscape and the magnificent sights and sounds of a morning walk along the Tower Trail to the Viewing Tower.  Past experience on this hike right here in our own ‘backyard’ has resulted in a species list that will rival many other events.  Can we do it again?

Species: Canada Warbler, American Redstart, Baltimore Oriole, Yellow Warbler, Sora

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

The Longest, Shortest Walk You Will Ever Take Richard Tofflemire / Andalyne Tofflemire
A29 8:30am to 11:30am

It’s more than just identifying what you see. We will focus on how birds and bugs interact with each other. But don’t expect to cover a lot of distance because there's soo… much to see right at your feet and above your head!

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Nature Ramble - MacGregor Point South Norah Toth
A30 1:30pm

Norah will take you to one of her favourite areas in MacGregor Point. Wildflowers and birds seen along the route will be highlighted.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Nature Ramble - Old Shore Road Trail John Reaume
A31 1:30pm

A leisurely walk along the Old Shore Road Trail near the Visitor Centre. Plants, flowers, dragonflies, birds – let’s see what we find. 

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Meet the Bees Sheila Colla
A32 1:30pm

Come for a short walk to learn how to harmlessly catch and identify bumblebees and other native bees with Dr. Sheila Colla, co-author of A Guide to the Bumblebees of North America.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Fun, Frog Frolic at MacGregor Point Kerry Jarvis
A33 1:30pm

Join Kerry on this fun frog frolic to listen to, locate and observe several species of frog and the American Toad at MacGregor Point.  If you have them, bring camera and close-up binoculars

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Evening
The Plight of the Bumblebee Sheila Colla
A34 7:15pm

Come learn about the status of Canadian bumblebees and what you can do to help wild populations of these important native pollinators. Tools for identification to species level and a new Citizen Science project will also be discussed.

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

LIVE BIRD BANDING DEMONSTRATIONS Brendan Toews
6:00am to noon

Join our on-site bird bander Brendan Toews as he captures and bands festival birds. 

Banding helps researchers understand dispersal and migration patterns, behaviour and social structure, lifespan and survival rate, reproductive success and population growth.

Banding is a skilled process that requires extreme patience, dexterity, gentleness and organizational and problem-solving abilities. Observing experienced banders is an impressive sight. They can hold a bird in one hand while using the other to maneuver a tiny metal circular band onto a pair of banding pliers, open it up, get it into the proper opening in the nose of the pliers and attach it to the bird's leg - all in a matter of seconds. The pliers are fashioned so that it's impossible to squeeze the bird's leg. The birds must be captured, banded, measured, weighed and released in a timely manner so as to minimize trauma. Integrity plays an important role in banding. Banders follow a strict code of ethics that spells out their responsibilities to minimize stress, injury and death of captured birds.

After extraction the bird is put into a breathable opaque cloth bag used for transporting birds from the netting sites to the banding station. There is one bird per bag, and when birds are waiting to be banded, the bags are always hung up on a peg and never placed on the ground. As soon as the bird is banded and the data recorded, the bird is released.

Banders must keep meticulous records. The age and sex of the bird, as determined by the bander through measurement of the wing chord and observation of plumage, is recorded. The species is recorded, along with the weight and estimated fat content. The latter is a sign of migration readiness and overall health. The number and size of the band used, the bander's initials and the number of retraps. Sanitation standards are strictly adhered to in an effort to prevent disease transmission among either birds or humans.

This data is compiled with the day's total captures, the open and close time of the station, wind and weather conditions, volunteer hours, the number of visitors, the number of hours each mist net was used, the number and species of birds caught in each net, and the number of birds observed around the park through sight and sound.

For the safety of the birds, bird banding is weather dependent.

Read more about Brendan on our blog: http://huronfringefest.wordpress.com

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

The Southampton Rotary Club has available for purchase a variety of barbequed items and drinks.

Monday May 26, 2014
All Day
Birding South Bruce Peninsula Judith King
A35 6:00am to 4:30pm

Explore the mixed habitats along the back roads of the southern Bruce Peninsula.   Planned morning stops include Chesley Lake wetland as well as diagonal roads and roads in between, stopping for lunch at Boat Lake Conservation Area. Afternoon stops include Isaac Lake, Sky Lake and anything else that is wanted or can be fit in (Wiarton Lagoons, Wiarton Harbour, Rankin River Road, Sauble Beach).

A good variety of wetlands, lakes, hardwood forest, mixed forest and grasslands. 

Species: Brewers Blackbird, Black-throated Blue Warbler, Piping Plover, Mourning Warbler, Grasshopper Sparrow, Black Tern, Virginia Rail, Sora, Marsh Wren, Alder and Willow Flycatchers, Scarlet Tanager, Eastern Towhee, Cliff Swallow

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Northern Bruce Peninsula John Haselmayer
A36 6:00am to 4:30pm

Visit some of the upper Peninsula’s best known birding spots, such as Dyer’s Bay, Cabot Head, the sparrow fields and Crane Lake.  In this area, that is recognized as a major flyway, you will find alvar, shoreline and wetlands.  John will take you to the Bruce Peninsula Bird Observatory to watch the banding operation, Crane Lake and the nearby sparrow fields. The former Eastern Loggerhead Shrike captive breeding site and the Cabot Head Lighthouse are nearby.

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Morning
Birding the Periphery of the Park Mike Burrell
A38 6:30am to 11:30am

Grab your binoculars AND notebooks! While we are out enjoying the birds we will also be contributing to one of the biggest Citizen Science projects ever – eBird. After the hike we’ll have a quick demo of how simple it is to really make your observations count.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding the Tower Trail James Turland
A39 7:00am to 11:30am

Walk the Tower Trail from the park road to the Ducks Unlimited pond. Habitat is a mixture of wetlands and hardwood forests.

Species: American Redstart, Warbling Vireo, Canada Warbler, Sora, Pileated Woodpecker

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Botany & Birding in South Bruce Peninsula (LONG DAY) Doug Pedwell (Doug Martin assisting)
A37 1:30pm to 8:45pm

AN AFTERNOON INTO EVENING OUTING - a new look at a long day to enjoy nature through late afternoon and early evening.  We will be observing a variety of ecosystems including forest, escarpment, rocky shorelines, marshes, lakes, sandy shorelines and pasturelands. 

This event will return by 8:45pm, in time for the 9:00pm (A43) evening event.

** Please note: You will NOT be able to attend the 7:15pm (A42) evening event **

The program which calculates our fees automatically is not able to handle this afternoon into evening event.  As a Single Event this extended day will have a total cost of $40 (single "afternoon" event fee of $20 + a $20 extra fee for the extended hours).  Those purchasing a Weekend or Festival Package will be refunded the $20 extra fee at the registration tent to reflect the correct Package Price.  Please contact the registrar if you have additional questions.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Nature Ramble - Old Shore Road Trail Laura Cook
A40 1:30pm to 3:30pm

Laura will take you along one of her favourite trails in MacGregor Point. Wildflowers, insects and birds seen along the route will be highlighted.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

A Tree-Bordered Pond Marshall Byle
A41 1:30pm to 4:30pm

This outing will explore a private 100 acre rural property with trout stream, pond, and woodlot. Approximately 2 km. walk, good boots required.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Evening
Important Bird Areas Mike Burrell
A42 7:15pm to 8:45pm

Come hear about some of Ontario’s most important sites for bird conservation and how your help can make a difference on a global scale.

An Evening of Astronomy - The Night Sky John Hlynialuk / Bluewater Astronomical Society
A43 9:00pm

John will take you on a tour through the deep reaches of the universe. Program will feature astronomical highlights of 2014 as well as Saturn, Mars and more distant objects like nebula, clusters and galaxies.

Outdoor viewing through telescopes is weather-permitting.

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

The Southampton Rotary Club has available for purchase a variety of barbequed items and drinks.

Tuesday May 27, 2014
Other
BRUCE PENINSULA BIRD OBSERVATORY - ON YOUR OWN
dawn to 11 am

The Bruce Peninsula Bird Observatory is providing Huron Fringe Birding Festival participants the opportunity to drop in to observe banding at the banding station from dawn to 11 am only.  Please park outside the gate and walk the 1.2 km to the station.  Directions to the banding station can be found at www.bpbp.ca.  For those visiting, a donation to support migration monitoring will be appreciated.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

BRUCE COUNTY MUSEUM AND CULTURAL CENTRE - ON YOUR OWN
10:00am to 5:00pm

The Bruce County Museum & Cultural Centre in Southampton is open 10am to 5pm for those participants who remain in the area between festival weekends.

Located at 33 Victoria St North in Southampton, a variety of exhibits are open to explore: War of 1812 / HMS General Hunter near-full scale model and interactive exhibit / General Store 

Phone: 519-797-2080

Wednesday May 28, 2014
Other
BRUCE COUNTY MUSEUM AND CULTURAL CENTRE - ON YOUR OWN
10:00am to 5:00pm

The Bruce County Museum & Cultural Centre in Southampton is open 10am to 5pm for those participants who remain in the area between festival weekends.

Located at 33 Victoria St North in Southampton, a variety of exhibits are open to explore: War of 1812 / HMS General Hunter near-full scale model and interactive exhibit / General Store 

Phone: 519-797-2080

Thursday May 29, 2014
All Day
Escarpment Bluffs to Georgian Bay Joy Albrecht
B01 6:30am to 4:30pm

Located between Colpoy's and Sydney bays, Cape Croker peninsula provides old field, alvar and forested habitats. Nearby is Malcolm Bluff Shores Nature Reserve. Over 1000 hectares have been recently acquired in the area of Malcolm Bluff Shores for protection purposes by Ontario Nature and the Bruce Trail Conservancy. From the cliffs which are over 110 metres above the shoreline at Colpoy's Bay, you can experience spectacular vistas. We will be birding varied habitats.

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Birding the Huron Fringe North James Turland
B02 7:00am to 4:30pm

Huron Fringe refers to the sand and gravel lowlands adjacent to Lake Huron.  This driving tour explores the fringe between MacGregor Point and Sauble Falls to the north.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Tips and Techniques on Photographing Waterfalls Kerry Jarvis
B03 7:30am to 4:30pm

Participants will get an opportunity to capture several local waterfalls by experimenting with a variety of photographic techniques.  Intermediate to experienced SLR users.  Bring SLR camera, tripod and lenses- zoom, close-up.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Morning
Down & Dirty - Wildflower Photography Doug Pedwell
B04 7:30am to 11:30am

Participants will take their cameras and equipment to photograph wildflowers at a variety of locations in the park.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Botany of the "Fringe" Barbara Palmer
B05 1:30pm

The Huron Fringe is a physiographic unit between the former glacial Lake Algonquin shoreline and the present day Lake Huron shoreline.  Many unique shoreline plants are found in MacGregor Point.  Former cobble beach ridges, swales and ancient miniature dunes each provide their own combination of plants. Barbara will help you identify spring wildflowers.

Species: Dwarf Lake Iris

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Tree and Shrub Identification Bob Gray
B06 1:30pm

Take a leisurely walk in the interior of the park to identify trees and shrubs and to see how species associate with different site types.

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Evening
Ontario's Bird Surveys - What are they Telling Us? Mike Cadman
B07 7:15pm

Citizen scientists provide a wealth of data on the size and trends of Ontario’s bird populations. This presentation will outline surveys, methods, and findings. Special attention will be given to the decline of aerial insectivores (swallows, swifts, nightjars).

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

a variety of barbequed items and drinks will be available for purchase

Friday May 30, 2014
All Day
Cabot Head / Dyer's Bay - A Birding Area of Importance Rod Steinacher
B08 6:00am to 4:30pm

Visit some of the Peninsula’s best known birding spots, such as Dyer’s Bay, the sparrow fields near Larkwhistle and Crane Lake. You will have the opportunity to observe migration monitoring and bird banding at the Cabot Head Research Station. 

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding the Huron Fringe South James Turland
B09 6:30am to 4:30pm

Huron Fringe refers to the sand and gravel lowlands adjacent to Lake Huron. This driving tour explores the fringe between MacGregor Park and Point Clark to the south. 

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Nature & Landscape Photography in South Bruce Peninsula Doug Pedwell
B10 6:45am to 4:30pm

This photographic expedition to the southern Bruce Peninsula has two themes: landscapes and wildflowers.  The Niagara Escarpment provides a landscape rich with dramatic photographic opportunities.  Also the Bruce Peninsula is home to a number of provincially significant plants ranging from Alvar species to orchids. For each theme various ideas for composition, exposure and lighting will be discussed.

Difficulty: Difficult -- Walking on trails that have uneven terrain. There may be some walking off-trail. You should be able to negotiate walking on slippery surfaces, where there is unsure footing or where you are climbing over rocks and logs.

Morning
Is It a Bird or Your Mnemonic? Michael Carlson
B11 6:00am

If you wish to improve your skills related to birding by ear, Michael is the ideal person to go out with.  He will help you filter the songs and calls of a variety of birds along the Tower Trail.   Learn mnemonic tricks that will help you as you identify birds by their song.  

Species: Orioles, Woodpeckers, Warblers, Flycatchers, Waterfowl

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding the MacGregor Boundary Mike Cadman
B12 7:00am

Join Mike as he visits some hot spots including the Day Use beach, the Park Office, the old cottage entry road and along the Townline.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Wildflowers: Historical Facts & Fiction Heather Starrs
B13 1:30pm

Legends and superstitions are attached to many common, and not so common, plants found at MacGregor Point.  Heather’s walk will introduce you to some plants’ stories.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Roadside Botany Ramble Larry Lamb
B14 1:30pm

Explore various roadside habitats in the vicinity of the Visitor Centre.  Learn to use identification keys and Newcomb's Wildflower Guide (bring yours along!).  

Species: Dwarf Lake Iris

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Identifying Dragonflies in the Field Glenn Richardson
B15 1:30pm

Not everything with wings at MacGregor Point is a bird!  Many and varied dragonflies are also evident in the park.  Meadowhawks and skimmers are some of the usual inhabitants of the wetlands in the park.  But don't forget, odonates are also found along the shoreline and in old fields.  Field study is the best way to learn their identification.  Don't let it stop you if you don't have your own net.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Evening
A Fling With Shorebirds: Bills, Breasts & a Little Tail Mark Peck
B16 7:15pm

For many birders, shorebirds can be notoriously difficult to identify.  Join in the fun as we look at the important characteristics that help simplify common Ontario shorebirds.

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

a variety of barbequed items and drinks will be available for purchase 

Saturday May 31, 2014
All Day
Big Day on the Bruce Michael Carlson
B17 6:00am

Are you ready for a full day of birding?  If so, you won’t want to miss this morning to night birding marathon on the Bruce Peninsula.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Secrets of the Georgian Bay Formation Bob Gray
B18 7:30am to 4:30pm

This day long excursion will explore several hidden features of the Niagara Escarpment.  Bob will share theories about how these features were formed.  

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Difficulty: Difficult -- Walking on trails that have uneven terrain. There may be some walking off-trail. You should be able to negotiate walking on slippery surfaces, where there is unsure footing or where you are climbing over rocks and logs.

Morning
Road Birding for Grassland Birds Brett Woodman
B19 7:00am to Noon

Remember gravel runs? This one is a road trip looking for birds!  Brett will take you on a tour of some back roads in Saugeen Shores looking for elusive nesting grassland birds; and others that you see along the way.  Be prepared for some walking on this trip.

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding by Nest Mark Peck
B20 7:30am

Enjoy a relaxed walk in MacGregor Point looking for bird nests.  Mark will share his techniques for finding and identifying nests and explain how to record nesting information for the Ontario Nest Records Scheme.

Species: Ovenbird, American Redstart, Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, Eastern Phoebe, American Robin

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding MacGregor - Old Fields & Trails James Turland
B21 8:00am to 11:30 am

A morning walk through varied habitats along the Deer Run and Rotary Way trails in the northeast corner of the Park.  These are infrequently birded areas.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Dynamic Digital Camera Tips Jennifer O'Reilly
B22 9:00am to 11:30 am

Step by step, easy to understand instruction on how to take award winning compositions and utilizing the best features on your camera! Topics discussed include navigating the camera's menu system, the zoom lens, fixing blurry, under/overexposed pictures, tips for better macro shots, fill flash techniques and more!  Great for the beginner or intermediate photographer.

Suitable for point and shoot and DSLR camera owners.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
The Tale of the Piping Plover Stew Nutt
B23 1:30pm to 4:30

Piping Plover behaviors including: courtship, feeding, life history, territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and/or explained during your time with these birds.  Become a ‘Plover Lover’.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Wildflower Diversity within the Fringe Brett Woodman
B24 1:30pm

Brett has some favourite areas for plants in and around the park.  Here’s your chance to learn about and appreciate some of MacGregor Point’s varied plants and wildflowers.  Both Latin and common names will be shared as well as habitat preferences. 

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Plant & Wildflower Ramble Larry Lamb
B25 1:30pm

Walk the trails and campground loops from the Day Use area to Pitcher Plant Marl.  Learn to use identification keys and Newcomb's Wildflower Guide (bring yours along!).  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Butterfly Walk Glenn Richardson
B26 1:30pm

Spring butterflies are often small and move about quickly.  There have been up to 20 butterflies seen in MacGregor Point during the festival.  Glenn will help you identify them and the plants they are associated with.

Species: Spring Azure, Mourning Cloak

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Advanced Digital Camera Techniques Jennifer O'Reilly
B27 1:30pm to 4:30pm

This workshop takes you out into the 'field' for hands on photography . Learn pro techniques in 'bracketing' to expose for highlights, 'hyper' focalizing for 3D effect, creative white balance and more.  Composition topics include light direction, technques in capturing dynamic line, shape, texture... all guaranteed to put the 'wow' factor into your photographs.  

Evening
Bruce County Beef Dinner
B28 5:00pm to 6:30pm

Harrigan’s Catering, Southampton.

The Strait of Gibraltar: A Bird Migration Hotspot Justin Peter
B29 7:15pm

Each autumn, millions of birds that breed in Europe will go to Africa to spend the winter. The trip is not necessarily a direct one, however, since many birds will avoid crossing the Mediterranean Sea at all costs. The Strait of Gibraltar in between Spain and Morocco represents the shortest distance between the western half of Europe and Africa and consequently Spain acts as a ‘funnel’ for hundreds of thousands of these birds. The Strait is an ideal location to study migratory patterns of European birds as well as changes in their populations. In 2010, Justin Peter volunteered for a non-profit organization that monitors bird migration there, with a particular interest in raptors and other soaring birds. In this illustrated talk, Justin will shed some light on the mysteries of bird migration across the Strait of Gibraltar and on his experiences there. 

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

a variety of barbequed items and drinks will be available for purschase

Sunday June 1, 2014
All Day
Malcolm Bluffs & Cape Croker Alfred Raab
B30 6:00am to 4:30pm

Bird in a variety of habitats within the Cape Croker Peninsula and Malcolm Bluffs Nature Reserve.  The cliffs above Colpoy's Bay shoreline provide spectacular vistas.

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader. 

Difficulty: Moderate -- Walking on maintained trails some of which may be rough or rocky. Brisk walking may be required to get from one location to another in a timely manner. You should be able to walk up to 4.5 kilometres (3 miles) without any problems.

Birding 'n Botany at Bognor Mark Wiercinski
B31 6:30am to 4:30pm

There is nothing like a good wetland to tip the curiosity metre to the high end; and who knows what you will stumble into.  This is one of the biggest wetland complexes in Grey Bruce.  You won’t regret joining Mark for a diverse adventure over varied terrain - field, wetland, forest and a bit of escarpment.  

This event does have an alternate meeting location.  All arrangements must be made with the registrar.  We ask that participants NOT contact the leader.

Difficulty: Difficult -- Walking on trails that have uneven terrain. There may be some walking off-trail. You should be able to negotiate walking on slippery surfaces, where there is unsure footing or where you are climbing over rocks and logs.

Morning
Birding the Tower Trail Justin Peter
B32 6:30am to 11:30 am

Hike the Tower Trail and check the Ducks Unlimited pond from both the viewing tower and bird blind.  Habitat is a mix of wetlands and hardwood forests.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Birding the Periphery James Turland
B33 7:00am to 11:30 am

Woodland, lake shore, wetlands and abandoned fields are some of the habitats involved. 

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Searching for Stragglers - MacGregor's Late Migrants Michael Carlson
B34 8:00am

Join Michael as he searches select spots in MacGregor Point for breeding birds as well as late spring migrants, such as Yellow-bellied Flycatcher and Gray-cheeked Thrush.  

Species: Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, Gray-cheeked Thrush,Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Black-billed Cuckoo

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Afternoon
Exploring Kinghurst Forest Tanya Pulfert / Catherine Jimenea
B35 1:30pm to 4:30pm

Kinghurst Forest is a special place and Catherine and Tanya are keen to take you for a walk through this Ontario Nature property.  On this general nature walk you will be a Citizen Scientist and report your reptile and amphibian sightings.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Fun, Frog Frolic at MacGregor Point Kerry Jarvis
B36 1:30pm to 4:30pm

Join Kerry on this fun frog frolic to listen to, locate and observe several species of frog and the American Toad at MacGregor Point.  If you have them, bring camera and close-up binoculars.    

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Evening
Sunset Walk Norah Toth
B37 7:15pm to 9:15pm

The Lake Huron shoreline offers some of the most spectacular sunsets in the world.  What a wonderful way to enjoy a sunset with friends.  

Difficulty: Easy -- Walking leisurely on groomed and maintained trails. Walking shoes are recommended. You should be able to walk up to 1.5 kilometres (1 mile) without any problems.

Other
Morning Coffee & Pastries
5:30am

Coffee and pastries are available in the Visitor Centre.

Southampton Rotary Club BBQ
11:30am to 1:00pm

a variety of barbequed items and drinks will be available for purchase