October 13th, 2013
Birding Photo Opportunities in Oxford County
The recently published Oxford Nature - Birding & Trails map is the key to finding birding spots around the County. Illustrated on the map, and coded with GPS coordinates, you'll soon be standing just where you need to be to hear and photograph birds. Armed with your camera and a good pair of binoculars, you won't be disappointed. We're still experiencing Fall migration traffic as waterfowl, shorebirds and songbirds follow the Thames River system, on their annual trip South.
The brochure also lists many common birds who nest and breed here annually. The Oxford County trails system is also plotted on the map. Visit the Woodstock Tourism Oxford visitor information centre at 580 Bruin Blvd. to get a free copy of the map and the Seek & Explore Trails Guide. The centre is open 24 hours per day, staffed between 9am and 5pm.
Oxford County Discoveries...
Autumn is my favourite time of the year. The air is fresh and crisp. The leaves along the shoreline morph into a veritable rainbow of colour. It's time to put away your sandals, and bring out your sweaters.
It was once mentioned to me by a visitor that Oxford's gently rolling countryside reminded him of rural France. Yes, we are curvacious. And yes, we are photogenic. Four season pretty, in fact.
Time was, that on the weekend I'd spend the mornings with a good friend, my camera, and back up battery and digital cards. One never knew what discoveries lay ahead. By simply prowling Oxford County backroads I was never disappointed by what my shutter captured. You might call me a shutterbug with a passion for nature.
It's a fact that Oxford is home to one of the largest settlements of Dutch, outside of Holland. They came because of our rich soils and conducive climate. And agriculture is what drew them here. The largest Dutch community surrounds the village of Norwich. And that same section of Oxford is home to over a hundred Amish farms. What a contrast between the two cultures. But they live in harmony, and are both gentle spirits. Just north of Holbrook you'll find a home surrounded by acres of tulips and daffodils in the Spring. Behind the red and yellow display of colour you'll see a collection of farm buildings. How perfect to capture that culture with a click of my shutter! Slow down in this part of Oxford, and share the road with Amish horse and buggies as they traverse the backroads and highways. And don't be surprised to find hitching posts in Norwich, Tillsonburg and Ingersoll.
Oxford's trail system, woodlots, rivers, lakes and wetlands make for ideal conditions to witness nature and to get away from it all. And since we're central in Canada's Carolinian Life Zone, several unusual flora and fauna can be found here, and no where else in Canada, outside of Southern Ontario.
In our architecture you'll find good bones, and beautifully restored public buildings. Throughout our community you'll find talented artists. The quality of life here is in direct contrast to larger urban centres, and visitors soon come to realize that our rural roots are indeed authentic. I hope that you'll enjoy my eclectic collection of images collected throughout the seasons, and from across the community that I so love.
Inspired by her backroads travels around the world, Cathy's photographic art is eclectic by nature. She markets her works at galleries and art shows throughout the year.