NeilyWorld Birding Ottawa - Southeast - Eastern Sewage Lagoons Route
WINCHESTER SEWAGE LAGOONS
Spring: ** Summer: *** Fall: *** Winter: *
Warning: Sewage lagoons generally do not welcome visitors. Liability insurance is behind much of their reluctance. In the past, they have often made an exception for birders. For some lagoons, the OFNC and/or independent birdwatchers have arranged special access with the operators or wardens. Contact the OFNC to find the current arrangements, if any. Some lagoons are partly visible without crossing the fences, though because of the brem construction, many are not visible from the road. Lagoons are generally not heavily patrolled or impassibly fenced, and when trespassers are unwelcome they are usually just asked to leave; so many birders assume the "No Tresspassing" signs are for someone else (especially given past tolerance). Once in a while, especially in hunting season, hunters make the same assumption. They are less welcome than birders though and are often reported by the locals. After one of these incidents, patrols may be more frequent. The rules seem to change as often as the folks assigned to enforce them; some are more tolerant than others (some are downright helpful). Use courtesy and common sense. And when you park near a sewage lagoon, please don't block the access roads. Even without crossing the fences, a patient and competent birder can see many species as they fly into and out of the lagoons.
Views of Winchester Sewage Lagoons
Independent Directions to this Site: From Highway 417 (The Queensway) take exit 96 (Boundary Road). Proceed 20.0 km SSE on Boundary Road (Regional 41) to Marionville Road at Marionville. Turn right or WSW onto Marionville Road and drive 1.3 km to Bisson Road. Turn left or SSE onto it and go 1.5 km to Ormond Road. Turn right or WSW onto it and proceed 5.9 km to Regional 31 at Harmony. Turn left or SSE onto Regional 31 and drive 5.2 km to Liscumb Road. Turn left or ENE onto Liscumb and proceed 2.3 km to the corner where Ottawa Street (County 3) joins on your right. Continue straight ENE along Liscumb Road, now also County 3, and in just less than a kilometre you will see the entrance to the lagoons on the right.
Eastern Sewage Lagoons Route Route Directions: From Highway 417 (The Queensway) take exit 96 (Boundary Road). Proceed 20.0 km SSE on Boundary Road (Regional 41) to Marionville Road at Marionville. Turn right or WSW onto Marionville Road and drive 6.8 km to Boundary / Line. Turn left or SSE on Boundary Road and go 1.6 km to Regional 31 at Harmony. Continue straight SSE onto Regional 31 and drive 5.2 km to Liscumb Road. Turn left or ENE onto Liscumb and proceed 2.3 km to the corner where Ottawa Street (County Road 3) joins on your right. Continue straight ENE along Liscumb Road, now also County Road 3, and in just less than a kilometre you will see the entrance to the lagoons on the right.
Map of Winchester Lagoons area
Site Description and Birding Information: This lagoon complex has been productive over the years, especially for shorebirds. All the regular species of shorebirds which pass through the Ottawa area have been seen here. The surrounding countryside is largely pastureland for dairy cattle.
Uncommon species are sometimes seen, including Lesser Golden Plover, Long-billed Dowitcher, Baird's Sandpiper, and Red-necked and Red Phalarope. A rare Western Sandpiper was seen here on Aug. 22, 1990. Keep a eye out for flight activity by the shorebird flocks, indicating that they may have spotted a threat. Such threats may be a predator, rarely a Peregrine Falcon. Watch also for migrating swallows, waterfowl, gulls and American Pipits. In the mid-October to mid-November timeframe over the last few years, there have been unusually large concentrations (up to 100+ in mid-October 2002) of Bonaparte's Gulls at the lagoons. Snowy Owl has been seen in late fall - early winter in the area. Rarities include Ross' Goose (Oct. 30, 1999 and May 8, 2006) and American Avocet (Sept. 28, 2003).
American Avocet - Winchester Lagoons - Sep. 28, 2003
Eastern Sewage Lagoons Route Route Directions: From the Winchester Sewage Lagoons entrance on Liscumb(e) Road (County Road 3), return WSW 0.9 km to the 90 degree lefthand turn, then continue SSE on Ottawa Street (still CR 3) for 1.3 km to Main Street in Winchester. Turn left or ENE onto Main (later Boyne Road) and proceed 1.6 km to Belanger Road. Turn right or SSE onto Belanger and go 2.6 km to Regional 43. Turn left or ENE onto 43 and proceed 6.8 km to Queen Street West. Turn left or ENE onto Queen and go 1.0 km to Main Street North or County Road 7. Turn right or SSE onto it and follow it 0.4 km to Water Street. Turn left onto Water just before reaching the bridge and go 0.4 km east on it to an unnamed street (to Cross Road) on the right just before Water Street ends up in a parking lot. Follow this road, which turns left or east after 0.1 km to follow the riverbank. After about a kilometre you will see the next site on this loop, the Chesterville Sewage Lagoons, on the left or north side.
Return to Eastern Sewage Lagoons Route.
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Copyright © 2000 - 2015 Larry E. Neily
Last update: October 25, 2009