A “Whaaat the heck is that … ??!” Moment

We have been extraordinarily lucky, helped by cunning garden design and planting, over the years to get the high garden bird count that we have amassed but this afternoon we were sitting quietly having a cup of tea when J  grabbed her binoculars and called “Whaaat the heck is that … ??!”.

“That” was a Yellow-billed Cuckoo sitting in a birch tree by the patio and beautifully seen. By the time I had dashed upstairs for a camera it had, of course, hidden its head (which I had clearly seen, yellow lower bill mandible and all) and soon after flew away but the two pictures I managed to grab confirm the presence of this very, very elusive bird.  When will I learnt to keep a camera by the window!!

Need to calm down now with another cup of tea. Gosh, who’d a thunk it?

This is a rather uncommon bird in these parts with fewer than a dozen sightings on or in the vicinity of the Island of Montreal in the past ten years (eBird records) and none at all this year (yay!!). The most recent record seems to be a single bird at the MBO in 2015. The birding gods are working hard today.