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The Niagara Falls
Birding Weekend

Resources and Information
Updated 4/5/07

Post Trip Information
Trip Report by Martin Selzer
Bird List
Pictures by Lynn Jackson

Pictures by Karl Lukens

Pictures by Jane Henderson
Financial Reconciliation

Pre Trip Information

© A & J Binns


Synchronized Swimming

Optional Birding Uniform
Click for Niagara Falls, New York Forecast

To send an e-mail to all trip participants, Click Here.


Binns, Adrian
Filemyr, Bert
Henderson, Jane

Jackson, Lynn
Lukens, Karl
Murphy, Bill
Murphy, Naomi
Selzer, Martin
Walters, Chris
Windfelder, Frank

Arrangements (updated 11/25/02)


Karl will arrive at Bert's house on Thursday night and spend the night there.

Between 5:30 and 5:40 am on 12/6 Adrian and Frank will arrive at Bert's house. Adrian will have the van and Karl and Frank will leave their cars at Bert's house.

The four of us will drive to Martin's house.

Lynn will pick up Jane and get to Martin's by 6:00 am
The Murphy's will get to Martin's by 6:00 am
Chris will get to Martin's by 6:00 am

We will get on the road directly and people can get back to sleep in the van. We will be getting on 309 and then the PA turnpike northbound. The first place for bathrooms/coffee is Allentown. The next place is Hickory Run. If you want to have "breakfast" plan on having it before you get in the van. There are no Dunkin Donuts on the turnpike, but there will be things at one of the rest stops if anyone wants to stop.

This will be a trip of fast food lunches. We will be stopping as necessary. Feel free to bring lunch for the first day, but we will be stopping.

Just to be safe, bring your passport, voter's registration card, or some other proof of citizenship. I refer you to


I ask that everyone contribute five dollars to a "Travel Kitty". We will use that for tolls, parking, and incidentals. Gas costs will be put on a credit card and split later. We thank Martin in advance for volunteering to manage the "Travel Kitty"
Currency Converter

Weather Contingency Plan

We are going.

Birding Plans
These plans are based on conversations with several people. They are subject to change based on weather, birds, and participant input.

Friday 12/6 - We will head to the Niagara Falls area. On the way we will drive through Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge in New York. We should not have high expectations for that area but it will break up the ride. Leaving there we will go directly to the U.S. side of the American Falls (Goat Island). This will probably be our only stop on the U.S. side. Leaving there we will cross into Canada and head for the late afternoon fly-by at Niagara-on-the-Lake. Then to the motel and dinner.
Saturday 12/7 - We will concentrate on the length of the Niagara River. Our targets will be gulls and ducks. We will start at the south end of the river, across from Buffalo and head north (downstream) along the river. We will be in and out of the van many times as we cover the 30 miles of the river. The falls are about half-way. We will again end up at Niagara-on-the-Lake for the late afternoon fly-by.
Sunday 12/8 - We will concentrate on land birding. There are three possibilites for the day. 1. If there are good land birds available (finches, partridges, etc.) we could go for them. As of 11/25 there are no reports that would lead us to choose this option. 2. We can work the north shore of the Niagara pennisula from the mouth of the Niagara River to the Hamilton area. 3. Or we could work the south shore of the Niagara pennisula from start of the Niagara River to Long Point. We will make a decision on this as birding reports come in. We do not need to commit to a plan for that day until we get in the van that morning.
Monday 12/9
- After doing any necessary clean-up in the Niagara area, we will leave for Philadelphia, birding our way back through New York State. We will divert as necessary to pick up anything that may be "on the way home".


Martin e-mailed Doug McRae. Martin said "I was wondering if you had any tidbits to offer". Doug kindly responded:

Hi Martin,
Good to hear from you. .............Niagara is a lot of fun, and I am more than happy to talk with you about it. Why not give me a call and I can let you know what I know. One thing is bring lots of clothes because if it is below freezing, Niagara will be doubly cold - all the suspended moisture from the falls makes the immediate river area wickedly cold! Also, I have some copies of a great little booklet the local IBA put out which has all the key birding sites. Tell me how many are in your group and your address and I'll mail you each copies. Look forward to hearing from you - who knows, maybe I can pop down and join you for a day.
All the best, Doug



Reference Library

We thank Bert in advance for volunteering to bring Grant, Harrison, and Sibley.


For those people interested, we will keep track of species seen in New York and species seen in Ontario. Birds seen along the Niagara River may be in the U.S. or in Canada. For those interested..........the ABA says a bird must be within the prescribed area when observed. "Within means that the bird must be within the prescribed area when observed, although the observer need not be. For example, if an observer on the U.S. side of the Rio Grande identifies a bird across the river on the Mexican side, the bird may be counted on his Mexican list but not on his ABA Area list." Further information is at the ABA site.
We thank Karl in advance for volunteering to maintain the official list.


Reservations have been made at
Hampton Inn Niagara Falls-North Of The Falls 1-905-358-5555
5 rooms (3 doubles, 1 single, 1 double with roll-in bed)
Continental Breakfast
$59 Canadian per night per room. (About $40 US)

Reservations are being held on Bert's credit card. We have the right to cancel anytime up to 12/3.


On 9/25 Adrian reported:

I will be picking it (the van) up on Thursday Dec 5th at 5:30pm and have to get it back before midnight on Monday Dec 9th. Good deal! Total comes to $483.15 with the insurances, which include theft, comprehensive and collison, but not liability (he said that's comes under my insurance policy).

This now gives us the opportunity to leave earlier on Friday - I have no idea which way you plan on going but I presume that we will take the PA turnpike North. Since I live the furthest east, I suggest I pick you up then we meet the rest at Martins - then hop on the turnpike.

Bert and Adrian will be listed as drivers.

Suggested Reading/Studying


Cooper, Jerry A., Birdfinder: A Birder's Guide to Planning North American Birding Trips, American Birding Association, 1995.

Pittaway, Ron, Gull Watching Guide, OFO News: Newsletter of the Ontario Field Ornithologists, October 2000

Roy, Kayo J., Favorite Birding Hotspots: The Niagara River, OFO News: Newsletter of the Ontario Field Ornithologists, October 1998

Wells, Allison Childs and Wells, Jeffrey, Gull-Lovers' Travels, Birder's World, February 1999


Grant, Peter J., Gulls: A Guide To Identification, T & A D Poyser LTD, Avon, England 1989

Harrison, Peter, Seabirds: An Identification Guide, Houghton Mifflin Company, NY, 1985

Weeks, Bob., Curling For Dummies, C D G Books, Canada, 2001

Niagara Area Birding Websites

Gulling on the Niagara River
Ontario Field Ornithologists
Ontario Checklist
Ontario Birding
Ontario Records Committee
2001 Niagara Area Birding Archives
2000 Niagara Area Birding Archives
Birding on the dot Net - Recent Ontario Postings
Birding in New York - The Virtual Birder
Birding in Ontario - The Virtual Birder
Niagara Area Birding Reports
Niagara Corridor IBA
Toronto/Niagara Bird Board

Central / Northern New York Birding Websites

Birding on the Dot Net - Recent Oneida Postings
Birding on the Dot Net - Recent Northern New York Postings
Birding on the Dot Net - Recent Cayuga Postings
Northern NY Birding - Yahoo Group
Montezuma NWR

Hot Lines

Western New York Birdline (Buffalo and the Niagara Frontier): 716-896-1271
Finger Lakes Birdline (Ithaca): 607-254-2429
Rochester and the Genesee Region: 716-425-4630
Syracuse Hotline: 315-668-8000

Gull Identification Websites

Gull Identification Website
Gulls, Gulls, Gulls
Bob Lewis's Gull Site

Greg Lasley's Gull Site
Shades of Gray

Niagara Area Websites

Niagara Falls, Ontario- Official Site
Niagara Parks - Canada
Discover Niagara
Niagara Falls State Park, New York
Facts about Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls, Ontario Tourism
Niagara Falls, New York

Traffic Websites

Niagara Area Traffic
Niagara Area Road Map
New York State Thruway
Traveling to Canada (AAA Information)

Weather Websites

Weather Information from Enviornment Canada
Weather Information from The Weather Channel
Weather Information from The Weather Underground


Horseshoe Falls
Niagara Casino Construction
Peace Bridge
Niagara (Ontario) Traffic Cams

Sunrise - Sunset - Moon Information

Niagara Falls, Niagara County, New York (longitude W79.0, latitude N43.1):
Friday December 6, 2002 Eastern Standard Time

Begin civil twilight 7:01 a.m.
Sunrise 7:33 a.m.
Sun transit 12:08 p.m.
Sunset 4:41 p.m.
End civil twilight 5:14 p.m.

Civil twilight is defined to begin in the morning, and to end in the evening when the center of the Sun is geometrically 6 degrees below the horizon. This is the limit at which twilight illumination is sufficient, under good weather conditions, for terrestrial objects to be clearly distinguished; at the beginning of morning civil twilight, or end of evening civil twilight, the horizon is clearly defined and the brightest stars are visible under good atmospheric conditions in the absence of moonlight or other illumination. In the morning before the beginning of civil twilight and in the evening after the end of civil twilight, artificial illumination is normally required to carry on ordinary outdoor activities. Complete darkness, however, ends sometime prior to the beginning of morning civil twilight and begins sometime after the end of evening civil twilight.

The transit time of a celestial body refers to the instant that its center crosses an imaginary line in the sky - the observer's meridian - running from north to south. For observers in low to middle latitudes, transit is approximately midway between rise and set, and represents the time at which the body is highest in the sky on any given day. The transit of the Sun is local solar (sundial) noon.

Phase of the Moon: waxing crescent with 7% of the Moon's visible disk illuminated.
Moonrise 10:09 a.m.


Niagara Falls, Niagara County, New York (longitude W79.0, latitude N43.1):
Friday December 6, 2002 Eastern Standard Time

High Tide 9:47 a.m.
Low Tide 4:32 p.m.
Mean Range .0543 feet


World Curling Tour
Canadian Curling Association
Sweep Magazine
Review of "Men With Brooms"
Purchase "Men With Brooms"
WinCurl 2.01 for Windows (Free downloadable demo)
Glossary of Curling Terms (This will be on the post-trip quiz)
Manitoba Curling Association


Butterfly Watching in Ontario
Niagara Parks Butterfly Conservatory
Butterfly Garden at Niagara County Community College

Synchronized Swimming
Syncro Swimming USA
Syncro Canada
Synchronized Swimming Rules


Tim Horton's (The Wawa / Dunkin Donuts of the north)
Niagara - The Food Network