After Hurricane Wilma - Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia - October 2005

Published by Cathy and Allan Murrant (kittiwake AT

Participants: Cathy and Allan Murrant


(Anyone interested in details of the sightings listed below
can email us at kittiwake AT - all images copyright the authors)

The last few days have been very exciting in Nova Scotia and here on Cape Breton Island. Hurricane Wilma passed well south of us but still managed to bring lots of birds from the Southern United States.

Chimney Swifts, Tree Swallows, Barn Swallows and Common Terns which we see here in some numbers had already left for the south or so we thought. Incredible numbers of these birds were returned to us via Hurricane Wilma and they brought with them some very exciting rarities. We hope you enjoy some of these images from recent days on Cape Breton Island.

Black Guillemot - juvenile seen along the coast
Eurasian Wigeon -1 at Beacon St. Dam
Bald Eagle - Main à Dieu
Bonaparte's Gull - Morien, Mira Gut and Catalone Gut
Caspian Tern - Before Hurricane Wilma we had never seen a Caspian Tern in Cape Breton. We heard the odd report of them but we had never been lucky enough to see one. By the end of today (Sunday, Oct. 30, 2005) we had seen 12 in the following areas - 3 Dominion Beach, 1 Glace Bay Sanctuary, 1 Schooner Pond, 1 Port Morien, 1 Mira Gut, 4 Catalone Gut, and 1 Gabarus.
Forster's Tern - one of two birds - this bird seen in a flock of Common Terns at Mira Gut; the second at Catalone Gut
Gull-billed Tern - 2 at Port Morien - we found and photographed this Gull-billed Tern this morning and returned in the afternoon with George and Bev Crowell. This bird was very cooperative.
Snowy Owl - Schooner Pond- Stanley Murrant 2 sightings, Glace Bay 2 sightings Glen MacKinnon, 1 Dominion Beach.
Baird's Sandpiper - Port Morien
Long-billed Dowitcher - flock of 5 birds were found at Glace Bay Sanctuary.
Yellow-billed Cuckoo - 1 seen at Schooner Pond by Bev and George Crowell and a second bird in Port Morien.
Black-billed Cuckoo - juvenile - Schooner Pond
Townsend's Solitaire - in our yard in Sand Lake
Yellow-breasted Chat - seen again in the same place - Schooner Pond
Gray Catbird - Schooner Pond
Indigo Bunting - Schooner Pond

For more great images from Allan and Cathy click here