Tuesday, 30 December 2008

A SUMMARY OF THE NANAIMO CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT, 2008















Greater Yellowlegs: Ralph Hocken Photo.


Happy New Year Everyone!

We had a fantastic day for the Nanaimo Christmas Bird Count on Sunday, enjoying sunny skies, relatively warm temperatures, and mostly clear road conditions while we counted every last bird we could find in the Nanaimo count circle. Thank goodness Monday's weather didn't come a day early!

Overall, I think our count for individuals of birds will be down a bit due to the amount of snow on the ground in the uplands, but our species count wasn't greatly affected. Every bit of open water was well populated with waterfowl and the coastal areas also produced good numbers of birds, although everyone seemed to remark on the lack of scoters, and Pigeon Guillemots in particular, although small numbers of each were recorded. In the upland portions of the count circle the noticeably absent species was the Red Crossbill, with only two reported on the entire count so far!

Fortunately, Doug Henderson and Eveline Stokkink very graciously took a team out on the water to survey the small islands off of Nanaimo and the offshore waters of Georgia Strait within the count circle. They were thankful for the nice weather and relatively calm seas. Highlights for them were a huge pod of ~200 Pacific White-sided Dolphins that rode the bow of their boat and put on quite a show for about 20 minutes, and a good number of rock shorebirds (200+ Surfbirds and 5 Rock Sandpipers) on the Five Fingers Islands. A very big thanks to Doug and Eveline!

Highlights elsewhere in the count circle included a Yellow-billed Loon off of Piper's Lagoon sighted by Karl Ricker and Jim Wisnia; a Snow Goose near Brannen Lake sighted by John Brighton and Janie Agar; a Ruddy Duck (rare in this circle in the last 10 years) in Brannen Lake sighted by Rhys Harrison and Joe Crichton; an American Kestral in the Diver's Lake/Long Lake area sighted by Martin Lane and Sandy Shaw; a Greater Yellowlegs in the Cable Bay/Boat Harbour area of Cedar by the Sea sighted by Bruce Whittington and Wanda Dombrowski; a few Spotted Sandpipers near the foot of Entwhistle Road in north Nanaimo and on Newcastle Island; an impressive 9 individual owls of 4 species including: 1 Northern Saw-whet Owl, 1 Great Horned Owl, and 1 Barred Owl recorded by Ryan and Andrew Cathers, 3 Great Horned Owls recorded by Peter and Anneke Vankoerkerle, 1 Great Horned Owl recorded by Margie Bryant, and 2 Short-eared Owls at the Nanaimo River Estuary recorded by Carlo Pavan, Val George, and Ruth Rutledge; a possible Lewis's Woodpecker was reported from Gabriola Island by Jannie Pedersen, photo confirmation is awaited; and the usual Northern Shrike was seen on the Nanaimo River Estuary by Carlo Pavan, Val George, and Ruth Rutledge; bringing our unofficial total so far to 116 species.

Birds missed this year that are possible to see during the count (or count week) are as follows:
  • Wood Duck
  • Any grouse species
  • Band-tailed Pigeon (hopefully a feeder count will report in with some of these)
  • Hutton's Vireo
  • American Dipper
  • Western Meadowlark
Please keep your eye out and let me know if you see these species until midnight Dec. 31 (the end of count week) in the Nanaimo count circle (from Woodgrove Mall to just north of the Cassidy Airport).

Thanks to everyone who participated this year, and especially those of you who came to the Kin Hut after the count and contributed to the potluck. It was a bit hairy keeping everything organized this year with the weeks of snow preceeding the count but it all worked out and it was a real treat seeing everyone and sharing stories with you all by the fire and with lots of good food!

Keep well and warm!

Carlo Pavan
Compiler, Nanaimo Christmas Bird Count


P.S. -- *MARK YOUR NEW CALENDARS* Next year's count will be on Sunday December 27, 2009!

--

The sun shines not on us, but in us.
The rivers flow not past, but through us.
- John Muir

Sunday, 28 December 2008
















Pileated Woodpecker: Ralph Hocken Photo.

The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store
Nanaimo Bird Alert

To report your sightings
phone the Store at 250-390-3669
e-mail us at thebackyard@shaw.ca
call the Bird Alert at 250-390-3029

Also check the birdstore blog for the latest bird alerts and updates:
www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Post your sightings on these site:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bcbirdingvanisland/messages

Birds of British Columbia:
http://www.geog.ubc.ca/biodiversity/efauna/SpeciesChecklists.html

International Birdwatching Guides
http://www.guidedbirdwatching.com

Birdwatching contacts and information find a local birder to go birdwatching with:
http://www.birdingpal.org/

Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone number, along with the date, name and location of your sighting.

Sunday, December 28, 2008:

A pair of Anna's Hummingbirds and seven Steller's Jays have been visiting feeders in the 3400 block of Osprey Outlook in the Hammond Bay area of Nanaimo.

Four American Goldfinch, Dark-eyed Juncos, House Finch, Song Sparrows, Varied Thrush, Brewers Blackbirds, Red-winged Blackbirds, Northern Flickers, a Pileated Woodpecker and a Red-breasted Sapsucker are visiting feeders in a backyard in the 100 block of Meridian Way in Parksville.

December 27:
A Barred Owl, a Cooper's Hawk and a Virginia Rail were seen at Buttertubs Marsh in Nanaimo.

Friday December 26:
A male Anna's Hummingbird is visiting feeders for the first time in the 100 block of Garden Road West in Qualicum Beach.

Thursday December 25:
A pair of Varied Thrush are visiting feeders in Deep Bay.

Tuesday December 23:
Anna's Hummingbirds are visiting feeders along Vancouver Avenue and Departure Bay Road in Nanaimo.

Monday December 22:
A Red-breasted Sapsucker was seen in a yard in the 4800 block of Finnerty Place in Nanaimo.

Four Varied Thrush, many European Starlings, a Northern Flicker, a Red-breasted Sapsucker, Dark-eyed Juncos, Chestnut-backed Chickadees and an American Goldfinch are visiting feeders along Cosgrove Crescent in the Departure Bay area of Nanaimo.

Over 100 Pine Siskins and a Ruby-crowned Kinglet are visiting a yard near Cat Stream in Nanaimo.

An Orange-crowned Warbler was visiting a suet feeder along Bluebell Terrace in Nanaimo.

Sunday December 21:
Anna's Hummingbirds are visiting feeders along Sherwood Drive, in the Westwood Lake area and in the 5600 block of Lost Lake Road in Nanaimo.

A Pileated Woodpecker has been seen in the 2500 block of Departure Bay in Nanaimo.

A Song Sparrow is visiting feeders along Montana Road in Chase River.

Sunday December 07:
A Snowy Owl was seen at the top of Buckley Bay main Logging Road.


For further information on these sightings or for help in identifying a
bird please call The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store
@ (250) 390-3669
Toll Free @ 1-888-249-4145
e-mail: thebackyard@shaw.ca
***********************************
The Nanoose Naturalists
Thursday January 08, 2009, 7:00 pm
Nanoose Library,
Nanoose Bay
**********************************
Arrowsmith Naturalists
Monday January 26, 2009@ 7:30 pm.
Springwood School
Parksville
********************************
Everyone is welcome to join us for a 2-3 hour bird walk on the Sunday and Tuesday mornings. We leave from the Store at 9 A.M. Sunday Mornings and go to a different location in and around Nanaimo and from the Parksville Beach Community Park at 9 A.M. on Tuesdays and go to different areas in and around the Oceanside area.
**************************************************************

The Tuesday Bird Walk will resume on January 13, 2009.

*******************************************************

The Sunday Bird Walks will resume on February 01, 2009.

*******************************************************
"Birding on the Lower Mainland"
There is a birding trip being planned to Reifel Bird Sanctuary and Boundary Bay on January 10, 2009.
If you are interested in joining the birding trip please contact Roger Taylor at hoopoe@shaw.ca

Good birding
Neil Robins
Nanaimo

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Nanaimo bird alert















Warm Anna's Hummingbird: Thanks to Blair & Germaine Doré for the photo.







The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store
Nanaimo Bird Alert

To report your sightings
phone the Store at 250-390-3669
e-mail us at thebackyard@shaw.ca
call the Bird Alert at 250-390-3029

Also check the birdstore blog for the latest bird alerts and updates:
www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Post your sightings on these site:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bcbirdingvanisland/messages

Birds of British Columbia:
http://www.geog.ubc.ca/biodiversity/efauna/SpeciesChecklists.html

International Birdwatching Guides
http://www.guidedbirdwatching.com

Birdwatching contacts and information find a local birder to go birdwatching with:
http://www.birdingpal.org/

Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone number, along with the date, name and location of your sighting.


Sunday, December 21, 2008:
"Rare bird alert-Say's Phoebe"
A Say's Phoebe was seen at the Highway Tire Store along Highway one in Duncan.

"Rare bird alert-Harris's Sparrow"
A Harris's Sparrow is visiting feeders in the 6900 of Lancewood Avenue block in Upper Lantzville.

An Anna's Hummingbird is visiting feeders along Dawkins Lane in Nanaimo.


Merry Christmas--- from the Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store: Colin, Denise, Norma, Carlo, Carol, Marilynne and Neil.

Saturday December 20:

A Barred Owl was spotted on a patio along Boundary Crescent and Townsite Road in Nanaimo.

Friday December 19:
A Rufous Hummingbird has been reported in the 6100 block of Denver Way and in the 2000 block of Cathers Drive in Nanaimo.

A Ruby-crowned Kinglet and a Varied Thrush were seen at Neck Point Park in Nanaimo.

Two Varied Thrush and a Red-breasted Sapsucker were spotted in the 200 block of Dawkins Lane in Nanaimo.

Thursday December 18:
Two Pileated Woodpeckers are at suet feeders and a Red-breasted Sapsucker and an Anna's Hummingbird are feeding on sap on a tree along Broadway Road in north Nanaimo.

Anna's Hummingbirds, Golden-crowned Kinglets, Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Darkeyed Juncos, Varied Thrush, Northern Flickers, Spotted Towhees, Townsend's Warblers, Song Sparrows, Pine Siskins and Berwick's Wrens are visiting feeders in the 1100 block of Stymie Close in Qualicum Beach. Two Townsend's Warblers, three Northern Flickers, one Downy Woodpecker, Dark-eyed Juncos, Red-breasted Nuthatches, Steller's Jay, Spotted Towhees and Chestnut-backed Chickadees were seen in a backyard in Qualicum Beach.

Wednesday December 17:
"Rare bird alert-Harris's Sparrow"
A Harris's Sparrow is visiting feeders in the 6900 of Lancewood Avenue block in upper Lantzville.

A Townsend's Warbler and an Anna's Hummingbird are visiting feeders along Andrea Crescent in upper Lantzville.

A Rufous Hummingbird was coming to feeders in the 6200 block of Rose Place in Nanaimo.

Anna's Hummingbirds are visiting feeders along Hardy Road in Lantzville.


Tuesday December 16:

Two Trumpeter Swans were seen at Long Lake in Nanaimo.

Sunday December 14:
A Snow Goose was seen
at Somenos Marsh in Duncan.

For further information on these sightings or for help in identifying a
bird please call The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store
@ (250) 390-3669
Toll Free @ 1-888-249-4145
e-mail: thebackyard@shaw.ca
***********************************
The Nanoose Naturalists
Thursday January 08, 2009, 7:00 pm
Nanoose Library,
Nanoose Bay
**********************************
Arrowsmith Naturalists
Monday January 26, 2009@ 7:30 pm.
Springwood School
Parksville
********************************
Everyone is welcome to join us for a 2-3 hour bird walk on the Sunday and Tuesday mornings. We leave from the Store at 9 A.M. Sunday Mornings and go to a different location in and around Nanaimo and from the Parksville Beach Community Park at 9 A.M. on Tuesdays and go to different areas in and around the Oceanside area.
**************************************************************

The Tuesday Bird Walk will resume on January 13, 2009.

*******************************************************

The Sunday Bird Walks will resume on February 01, 2009.

*********************************************************************************************
Good birding
Neil Robins
Nanaimo

Monday, 15 December 2008

Nanaimo bird alert















Varied Thrush: Ralph Hocken Photo.



The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store
Nanaimo Bird Alert
To report your sightings
phone the Store at 250-390-3669
e-mail us at
thebackyard@shaw.ca
call the Bird Alert at 250-390-3029
Also check the birdstore blog for the latest bird alerts and updates:
www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com
International Birdwatching Guides
http://www.guidedbirdwatching.com
Birdwatching contacts and information find a local birder to go birdwatching with:
http://www.birdingpal.org/
Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone number, along with the date, name and location of your sighting.
Sunday, December 14, 2008:
The Sunday bird walk was cancelled due to the weather!
"Rare bird alert-Harris's Sparrow"
A Harris's Sparrow is visiting feeders along Southwind Drive in upper Lantzville.
A Varied Thrush was seen in the forest near Harlequin Crescent in Nanoose Bay.
An Anna's Hummingbird is visiting feeders along Dawkins Lane in Nanaimo.
Saturday December 13
A Townsend's Warbler is visiting suet feeders along Broadway Road in north Nanaimo.

Tuesday December 09:
The Tuesday Bird Walk went to Columbia Beach. Twelve birders saw and heard thirty-two species of birds. The surf was up and pounding on the shore on a windy, blustery December morning.
Highlights of the morning included a large flock of over three hundred Dunlin and three Black-bellied Plovers flying inland over us after leaving the large gravel bar. Over one hundred Black Turnstones and about forty Mew Gulls covered the gravel bar. Further off shore several Brandt's Cormorants, Double-crested Cormorants and Pelagic Cormorants flew low over the water. Several rafts of Common Goldeneye, Harlequin Ducks, Pacific Loons, a lone Common Loon and Red-throated Loon were spotted on the choppy waters. We saw eight House Finch perched on a low bush facing into the strong winds head on. One Long-tailed Duck sped past us low over the water heading down the Strait of Georgia.

Twelve birders found the following thirty-two species of birds;
American Wigeon, Mallard, Brandt's Cormorant, Double-crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Surf Scoter, Harlequin Duck, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Long-tailed Duck, Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Common Merganser, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Loon, Pacific Loon, Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Brandt's Cormorant, Double-crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Bald Eagle,
Black-bellied Plover, Black Oystercatcher, Black Turnstone, Dunlin, Mew Gull, Ring-billed Gull, Thayer's Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Rock Pigeon, Northwestern Crow, European Starling, Song Sparrow and
House Finch.

A Townsend's Warbler is visiting suet feeders alone Madonna Drive in Nanoose Bay.
A huge flock of Pine Siskins was spotted over Meredith Road and Thunderbird Drive in Nanaimo.

Friday November 28:

Steller's Jays, Downy Woodpeckers, European Starling, Northern Flicker,
Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Dark-eyed Juncos, House Finches, House Sparrows,
one female Anna's Hummingbird and Canada Geese were seen from a yard along
Pine Street in Nanaimo.

For further information on these sightings or for help in identifying a
bird please call The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store
@ (250) 390-3669
Toll Free @ 1-888-249-4145
e-mail:
thebackyard@shaw.ca
***********************************
The Nanoose Naturalists
Thursday January 08, 2009, 7:00 pm
Nanoose Library,
Nanoose Bay
**********************************
Arrowsmith Naturalists
Monday January 26, 2009@ 7:30 pm.
Springwood School
Parksville
********************************
Everyone is welcome to join us for a 2-3 hour bird walk on the Sunday and Tuesday mornings. We leave from the Store at 9 A.M. Sunday Mornings and go to a different location in and around Nanaimo and from the Parksville Beach Community Park at 9 A.M. on Tuesdays and go to different areas in and around the Oceanside area.
**************************************************************
The Tuesday Bird Walk on Tuesday December 16, has been cancelled.
The Tuesday Bird Walk will resume on January 13, 2009.
*******************************************************
There will be no Sunday Bird Walk on December 21, 2008.
The Sunday Bird Walks will resume on February 01, 2009.
*********************************************************************************************

NANOOSE/LANTZVILLE CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT

FRIDAY DECEMBER 19, 2008

WE ARE INVITING VOLUNTEERS TO HELP WITH THE BIRD STUDIES CANADA ANNUAL CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT IN THE NANOOSE BAY & LANTZVILLE AREA.

COUNT BIRDS AT YOUR HOME FEEDERS OR JOIN US ON A SMALL TEAM IN THE FIELD.

ALL LEVELS OF EXPERIENCE ARE WELCOME.

FOR DETAILS CONTACT EITHER RHYSHARRISON@SHAW.CA OR

468-5466 OR JOECRICHTON@SHAW.CA OR 468-1728.

***********************************************************************************************
Good birding
Neil Robins

Nanaimo

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Tuesday bird walk















Brandt's Cormorant: Ralph Hocken Photo.




The Tuesday Bird Walk went to Columbia Beach. Twelve birders saw and heard thirty-two species of birds. The surf was up and pounding on the shore on a windy, blustery December morning.

Highlights of the morning included a large flock of over three hundred Dunlin and three Black-bellied Plovers flying inland over us after leaving the large gravel bar. Over one hundred Black Turnstones and about forty Mew Gulls covered the gravel bar. Further off shore several Brandt's Cormorants, Double-crested Cormorants and Pelagic Cormorants flew low over the water. Several rafts of Common Goldeneye, Harlequin Ducks, Pacific Loons, a lone Common Loon and Red-throated Loon were spotted on the choppy waters. We saw eight House Finch perched on a low bush facing into the strong winds head on. One Long-tailed Duck sped past us low over the water heading down the Strait of Georgia.


The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store's weekly bird walk in the Parksville/Qualicum Beach area is on Tuesday mornings at 9 a.m. Participants meet at the at the Parksville Beach Community Park, at the parking area in front of the playground at 9 a.m. Rain and/or heavy winds will deter us--but we will plan a walk for every week. Everyone is welcome to bring their binoculars and join us for a morning of birding. For the weekly location of the birdwalk, please call Neil Robins at 250-954-1928 or The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 1-888-249-4145.


Twelve birders found the following thirty-two species of birds on December 09, 2008:
American Wigeon
Mallard
Brandt's Cormorant
Double-crested Cormorant
Pelagic Cormorant
Surf Scoter
Harlequin Duck
White-winged Scoter
Black Scoter
Long-tailed Duck
Bufflehead
Common Goldeneye
Common Merganser
Red-breasted Merganser
Red-throated Loon
Pacific Loon
Common Loon
Horned Grebe
Brandt's Cormorant
Double-crested Cormorant
Pelagic Cormorant
Bald Eagle
Black-bellied Plover
Black Oystercatcher
Black Turnstone
Dunlin
Mew Gull
Ring-billed Gull
Thayer's Gull
Glaucous-winged Gull
Rock Pigeon
Northwestern Crow
European Starling
Song Sparrow
House Finch

Sunday bird walk, December 07, 2008















Glaucious-winged Gulls , Brandt's Cormorant and Double-crested Cormorant: Ralph Hocken Photo.





The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store
Nanaimo Bird Alert

To report your sightings
phone the Store at 250-390-3669
e-mail us at
thebackyard@shaw.ca
call the Bird Alert at 250-390-3029

Also check the birdstore blog for the latest bird alerts and updates:
www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Post your sightings on these site:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bcbirdingvanisland/messages

Birds of British Columbia:
http://www.geog.ubc.ca/biodiversity/efauna/SpeciesChecklists.html

International Birdwatching Guides
http://www.guidedbirdwatching.com

Birdwatching contacts and information find a local birder to go birdwatching
with:
http://www.birdingpal.org/

Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone
number, along with the date, name and location of your sighting.

Sunday, December 07, 2008:
The Sunday Bird Walk went to the Plummer Road side of the Englishman River Estuary
in Parksville.
The highlights of the morning included seeing a Fox Sparrow and a Golden-crowned Kinglets as well as a Ruby-crowned Kinglet at the start of the walk. We saw a total of twenty Bald Eagles either perched or flying during the morning. Two Eurasian Wigeon were sifting through the mudflats and there were Brant Geese, Pacific Loons, Common Loon, Horned Grebes, Red-necked Grebes and a large flock of Red-breasted Mergangers out on the Strait of Georgia.
Nineteen birders found the following fifty-one species of birds on a rainy to start but sunny end to the morning.
Canada Goose, Brandt's Goose, Mallard, Green-winged Teal, Common Loon, Pacific Loon, Double-crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Brant Cormorant, Horned Grebe, Red-necked Grebe, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, American Wigeon, Eurasian Wigeon, Bufflehead, Northern Pintail, Harlequin Duck, Barrow's Goldeneye, Common Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Common Merganser, Bald Eagle, Black Oystercatcher, Dunlin, Mew Gull, Thayer's Gull, California Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Downy Woodpecker, Anna's Hummingbird, Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Golden-crowned Kinglet, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Bewick's Wren, Marsh Wren, American Robin, Spotted Towhee, Golden-crowned Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Fox Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco,Purple Finch, Pine Siskin, House Finch and Red-winged Blackbird.

Saturday December 06:
An Eurasian Wigeon was spotted on the tenth fairway at the Nanaimo Golf Course in Nanaimo.
Friday December 05:
About two Hundred Common Redpolls flew in and were feeding in the trees near Judges Row in Qualicum Beach.

A large flock of Common Redpolls landed in a fir tree in the area near the Eagles nest at Despard Avenue and
Meridian Way in Parksville.
Wednesday December 03:
Two minima race Cackling Geese with a small flock of other Cackling Geese and
a Peregrine Falcon was seen at Somenos Marsh in Duncan.
Tuesday December 02:
The Tuesday Bird Walk went to the Rathtrevor Provincial Park. Eighteen birders
saw and heard thirty-five species of birds on a sunny December morning.
Highlights of the morning that caught our attention included a large flock of
Bushtits and Dark-eyed Juncos bobbing from bush to bush just after we started the walk. A large flock of Golden-crowned Sparrows was feeding on the ground. We spotted a Red-throated Loon through our spotting scopes riding the choppy seas off shore. During the morning there were several lines of Surf Scoters, White-winged Scoters, Black Scoters and Pacific Loons flying low over the water. Four Black Oystercatchers, a Herring Gull and five Glaucous-winged Gulls were resting at the point on a gravel bar. Near the end of the walk we watched as two Fox Sparrows and two Spotted Towhees fed in the low bushes near the old farm house and we listened to a Downy Woodpecker call.
Eighteen birders found the following thirty-five species of birds.
Trumpeter Swan, Mallard, Harlequin Duck, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Bufflehead, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Loon, Pacific
Loon, Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Bald Eagle, Cooper's Hawk, Black Oystercatcher, Mew Gull, California Gull, Herring Gull, Thayer's Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Bushtit, Winter Wren, Golden-crowned Kinglet, American Robin, Spotted Towhee, Fox Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco and Pine Siskin.
Monday December 01:
A Townsend's Warbler is visiting suet feeders alone Madonna Drive in Nanoose Bay.
A huge flock of Pine Siskins were spotted over Meredith Road and Thunderbird Drive in Nanaimo.
Friday November 28:
Steller's Jays, Downy Woodpeckers, European Starling, Northern Flicker,
Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Dark-eyed Juncos, House Finches, House Sparrows,
one female Anna's Hummingbird and Canada Geese were seen from a yard along
Pine Street in Nanaimo.
For further information on these sightings or for help in identifying a
bird please call The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store
@ (250) 390-3669
Toll Free @ 1-888-249-4145
e-mail:
thebackyard@shaw.ca
***********************************
The Nanoose Naturalists
Thursday December 11, 2008 @ 7:00 pm
Nanoose Library,
Nanoose Bay
**********************************
Arrowsmith Naturalists
Monday January 26, 2009@ 7:30 pm.
Springwood School
Parksville
********************************
Everyone is welcome to join us for a 2-3 hour bird walk on the Sunday and
Tuesday mornings. We leave from the Store at 9 A.M. Sunday Mornings and go to a different location in and around Nanaimo and from the Parksville Beach Community Park at 9 A.M. on Tuesdays and go to different areas in and around the Oceanside area.
*****************************************
The Tuesday Bird Walk on Tuesday December 09 will be going to Columbia Beach.
Meet at the Parksville Community Park at the parking area in front of the playground area at 9:00 a.m. or at the parking area off Admiral Tyron Boulevard( turn at Columbia Drive off Highway19a go to the tee intersection and turn right onto Admiral Tyron Boulevard go about 100 meters and turn into the parking area.) at about 9:20A.M.
***************************************
The Sunday Bird Walk on December 14, 2008 will be going to the Nanoose Estuary
Meet at the Bird Store at 9:00 A.M. or the parking area at the beach behind the Church Camp off Arlington Road ( off highway 19a at Arlington Road) at about 9:15 A.M.
***************************************
Good birding
Neil Robins

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Tuesday bird walk














Downy Woodpecker: Ralph Hocken Photo.


The Tuesday Bird Walk went to the Rathtrevor Provincial Park. Eighteen birders saw and heard thirty-five species of birds on a sunny December morning.

Highlights of the morning that caught our attention included a large flock of Bushtits and Dark-eyed Juncos bobbing from bush to bush just after we started the walk. A large flock of Golden-crowned Sparrows was feeding on the ground. We spotted a Red-throated Loon through our spotting scopes riding the choppy seas off shore. During the morning there were several lines of Surf Scoters, White-winged Scoters, Black Scoters and Pacific Loons flying low over the water. Four Black Oystercatchers, a Herring Gull and five Glaucous-winged Gulls were resting at the point on a gravel bar. Near the end of the walk we watched as two Fox Sparrows and two Spotted Towhees fed in the low bushes near the old farm house and we listened to a Downy Woodpecker call.


The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store's weekly bird walk in the Parksville/Qualicum Beach area is on Tuesday mornings at 9 a.m. Participants meet at the at the Parksville Beach Community Park, at the parking area in front of the playground at 9 a.m. Rain and/or heavy winds will deter us--but we will plan a walk for every week. Everyone is welcome to bring their binoculars and join us for a morning of birding. For the weekly location of the birdwalk, please call Neil Robins at 250-954-1928 or The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 1-888-249-4145.
Eighteen birders found the following thirty-five species of birds on December 02, 2008:
Trumpeter Swan
Mallard
Harlequin Duck
Surf Scoter
White-winged Scoter
Black Scoter
Bufflehead
Red-breasted Merganser
Red-throated Loon
Pacific Loon
Common Loon
Horned Grebe
Bald Eagle
Cooper's Hawk
Black Oystercatcher
Mew Gull
California Gull
Herring Gull
Thayer's Gull
Glaucous-winged Gull
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Northwestern Crow
Common Raven
Chestnut-backed Chickadee
Bushtit
Winter Wren
Golden-crowned Kinglet
American Robin
Spotted Towhee
Fox Sparrow
Golden-crowned Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco
Pine Siskin

Sunday, 30 November 2008

Nanaimo bird alert, November 30, 2008

















Red-tailed Hawk: Ralph Hocken Photo.




The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store
Nanaimo Bird Alert

To report your sightings
phone the Store at 250-390-3669
e-mail us at thebackyard@shaw.ca
call the Bird Alert at 250-390-3029

Also check the birdstore blog for the latest bird alerts and updates:
www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Post your sightings on these site:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bcbirdingvanisland/messages

Birds of British Columbia:
http://www.geog.ubc.ca/biodiversity/efauna/SpeciesChecklists.html

International Birdwatching Guides
http://www.guidedbirdwatching.com

Birdwatching contacts and information find a local birder to go birdwatching
with:
http://www.birdingpal.org/

Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone
number, along with the date, name and location of your sighting.

Sunday, November 30, 2008:

The Sunday Bird Walk went to the Nanaimo River Estuary in Nanaimo.
Among the highlights were the sightings of a Wilson's Snipe, a Downy Woodpecker that was feeding on a small bush close to the trail, a Red-tailed Hawk who was perched in a tree for most of the morning, a Northern Harrier flying low over the estuary looking for prey and a Short-eared Owl hunting over the estuary.
Eight hardy birders found the following twenty-eight species of birds on a foggy November morning:
Great Blue Heron, Trumpeter Swan,
Mallard, Northern Pintail, Barrow's Goldeneye, Bufflehead, Common Merganser, Bald Eagle, Northern Harrier, Red-tailed Hawk, Short-eared Owl, Killdeer, Wilson's Snipe, Glaucous-winged Gull, Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, Downy Woodpecker, Steller's Jay, Common Raven, Bushtit, American Robin, European Starling, Spotted Towhee, Savannah Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, House Finch and Golden-crowned Sparrow.

Friday November 29:
Over thirty-five Purple Finch were seen at feeders in the 1000 block of Dunsmuir
Crescent in Ladysmith.


Thursday November 27:
A Eurasian Wigeon and a Eurasian by American Wigeon hybrid and more than a
thousand American Wigeon were seen near the end of the Cowichan Bay dock road in Cowichan Bay.

Tuesday November 18:
The Tuesday Bird Walk went to the Shelly Road side of the Englishman River
Estuary in Parksville.
Highlights of the morning that caught our attention included a large flock of
feisty Dark-eyed Juncos flitting in and out of the small bushes just after we started the walk. A Peregrine Falcon was perched in his usual spot high up in a Fir Tree on the northwest trail of the estuary. A mixed flock of Song Sparrows, a Lincoln's Sparrow and several Golden-crowned Sparrows kept us entertained on the path and in the small bushes just off the trail. We saw three pairs of Eurasian Wigeon close to shore in the estuary. Further out on the ocean there were large flocks of Harlequin Ducks, Surf Scoters, White-winged Scoters, Black Scoters, Buffleheads and a lone Pacific Loon bobbing on the choppy seas. On the way out of the estuary we came upon a flock of Golden-crowned Kinglets displaying their Golden crowns.
Fourteen birders found the following forty-nine species of birds.
Canada Goose, Eurasian Wigeon, American Wigeon, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Harlequin Duck, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Barrow's Goldeneye, Hooded Merganser, Common
Merganser, Red-breasted Merganser, Pacific Loon, Brandt's Cormorant, Double-crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Bald Eagle, Red-tailed Hawk, Peregrine Falcon, Black Turnstone, Wilson's Snipe, Mew Gull, Ring-billed Gull, California Gull, Herring Gull, Thayer's Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull,
Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, Steller's Jay, Northwestern Crow, Common
Raven, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Golden-crowned Kinglet, American Robin, European Starling, Spotted Towhee, Song Sparrow, Lincoln's Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, Brewer's Blackbird, House Finch and Pine Siskin.

Monday November 24:
A Golden-crowned Kinglet was spotted in Nanoose Bay.


Sunday November 23:

Ten California quail and one male Anna's hummingbird are visiting feeders in the 2500 Block Glenayr Drive in Nanaimo.
Seventy Greater White-fronted Geese were seen on the grass at the south end of the runway at the Tofino Airport .

Saturday November 22:
A Barred Owl was spotted sitting on the signpost on the corner of Sundown and Oakridge Drives in Nanaimo.
For further information on these sightings or for help in identifying a
bird please call The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store
@ (250) 390-3669
Toll Free @ 1-888-249-4145
e-mail: thebackyard@shaw.ca
***********************************
The Nanoose Naturalists
Thursday December 11, 2008 @ 7:00 pm
Nanoose Library,
Nanoose Bay
**********************************
Arrowsmith Naturalists
Monday December 22, 2008@ 7:30 pm.
Springwood School
Parksville
********************************
Everyone is welcome to join us for a 2-3 hour bird walk on the Sunday and Tuesday mornings. We leave from the Store at 9 A.M. Sunday Mornings and go to a different location in and around Nanaimo and from the Parksville Beach Community Park at 9 A.M. on Tuesdays and go to different areas in and around
the Oceanside area.
*****************************************
The Tuesday Bird Walk on Tuesday December 02 will be going to Rathtrevor Provincial Park.
Meet at the Parksville Community Park at the parking area in front of the playground area at 9:00 a.m. or at the last parking area before the camping area at Rathtrevor Provincial Park at about 9:10 a.m. Please note there is a parking fee in effect for the park.
***************************************
The Sunday Bird Walk on December 07, 2008 will be going to the Plummer Road side of the Englishman River Estuary in Parksville.
Meet at the Bird Store at 9:00 A.M. or the parking area at the corner of Plummer Road and Shorewood Drive at about 9:30 a.m.
***************************************
Good birding
Neil Robins
Nanaimo

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Tuesday bird walk, November 25, 2008















Red-tailed Hawk: Ralph Hocken Photo.



The Tuesday Bird Walk went to the Shelly Road side of the Englishman River Estuary in Parksville.

Fourteen birders saw and heard forty-nine species of birds on a surprisingly sunny November morning.

Highlights of the morning that caught our attention included a large flock of feisty Dark-eyed Juncos flitting in and out of the small bushes just after we started the walk. A Peregrine Falcon was perched in his usual spot high up in a Fir Tree on the northwest trail of the estuary. A mixed flock of Song Sparrows, a Lincoln's Sparrow and several Golden-crowned Sparrows kept us entertained on the path and in the small bushes just off the trail. We saw three pairs of Eurasian Wigeon close to shore in the estuary. Further out on the ocean there were large flocks of Harlequin Ducks, Surf Scoters, White-winged Scoters, Black Scoters, Buffleheads and a lone Pacific Loon bobbing on the choppy seas. On the way out of the estuary we came upon a flock of Golden-crowned Kinglets displaying their Golden crowns.


The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store's weekly bird walk in the Parksville/Qualicum Beach area is on Tuesday mornings at 9 a.m. Participants meet at the at the Parksville Beach Community Park, at the parking area in front of the playground at 9 a.m. Rain and/or heavy winds will deter us--but we will plan a walk for every week. Everyone is welcome to bring their binoculars and join us for a morning of birding. For the weekly location of the birdwalk, please call Neil Robins at 250-954-1928 or The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 1-888-249-4145.


Fourteen birders found the following forty-nine species of birds:
Canada Goose
Eurasian Wigeon
American Wigeon
Mallard
Northern Pintail
Harlequin Duck
Surf Scoter
White-winged Scoter
Black Scoter
Bufflehead
Common Goldeneye
Barrow's Goldeneye
Hooded Merganser
Common Merganser
Red-breasted Merganser
Pacific Loon
Brandt's Cormorant
Double-crested Cormorant
Pelagic Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Bald Eagle
Red-tailed Hawk
Peregrine Falcon
Black Turnstone
Wilson's Snipe
Mew Gull
Ring-billed Gull
California Gull
Herring Gull
Thayer's Gull
Glaucous-winged Gull
Belted Kingfisher
Northern Flicker
Steller's Jay
Northwestern Crow
Common Raven
Chestnut-backed Chickadee
Red-breasted Nuthatch
Golden-crowned Kinglet
American Robin
European Starling
Spotted Towhee
Song Sparrow
Lincoln's Sparrow
Golden-crowned Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco
Brewer's Blackbird
House Finch
Pine Siskin

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Nanaimo bird alert, November 23, 2008
















Dunlin: Ralph Hocken Photo.


The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store
Nanaimo Bird Alert

To report your sightings
phone the Store at 250-390-3669
e-mail us at
thebackyard@shaw.ca
call the Bird Alert at 250-390-3029

Also check the birdstore blog for the latest bird alerts and updates:
www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Post your sightings on these site:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bcbirdingvanisland/messages

Birds of British Columbia:
http://www.geog.ubc.ca/biodiversity/efauna/SpeciesChecklists.html

International Birdwatching Guides
http://www.guidedbirdwatching.com

Birdwatching contacts and information find a local birder to go birdwatching with:
http://www.birdingpal.org/

Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone
number, along with the date, name and location of your sighting.

Sunday, November 23, 2008:
The Sunday Bird Walk went to Neck Point in Nanaimo.
Among the highlights were the sightings of Pacific Loons, Common Murres and
Marbled Murrelets off shore. A flock of one hundred Dunlin moved along the shoreline. A mixed flock of Bushtits and Golden-crowned Kinglets flew through the low bushes near Sunset Beach.
Eighteen birders found the following forty-five species of birds:
Trumpeter Swans, Pacific Loon, Common Loon, Brandt's Cormorant,
Double-crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Mallard, Common Goldeneye, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Harlequin Duck, Long-tailed Duck, Common Merganser, Red-breasted Merganser, Horned Grebe, Red-necked Grebe, Great Blue Heron, Dunlin, Black Turnstone, Black Oystercatcher, Spotted Sandpiper, Bald Eagle, Sharp-shined Hawk, Thayer's Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Common Murre, Marbled Murrelet, Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, European Starling, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Bushtit, Winter Wren, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Golden-crowned Kinglet, American Robin, Spotted Towhee, Dark-eyed Junco, House Finch, Song Sparrow and Pine Siskin.

Saturday November 22:
Eleven California Quail were feeding under a bird feeder as Steller's Jays
tossed seed to the ground and ten Golden-Crowned Sparrows were seen in a backyard in the 2500 block Glenayr Drive in Nanaimo.
A female Merlin, a Northern Harrier, two Anna's Hummingbirds, Northern Flickers, Downy Woodpecker, European Starlings, Spotted Towhees, Chestnut-backed Chickadees, House Finches, Dark-eyed Juncos, Stellars Jays, Pileated Woodpecker, Trumpeter Swans, Canada geese, Great Blue Heron, Pine Siskins were seen in a backyard in the Five Acres area of Harewood in Nanaimo.

Thursday November 20:
"Rare Bird Alert: Black-tailed Gull" A Black-tailed Gull was seen resting on the bank of a channel near the viewing
tower at the end of Shelley Road at the Englishman River Estuary in Parksville. The Black-tailed Gull is normally found in Asia.
One Hairy Woodpecker, four Northern Flickers and two Pileated Woodpeckers were seen in a backyard in Qualicum Beach.
One Snow Bunting was seen at Parksville Beach Community Park in Parksville.


Wednesday November 19:
"Rare Bird Alert: Black-tailed Gull"
A Black-tailed Gull was seen at the Parksville Community Park Beach near the
Volleyball sand boxes area and later off the gravel bar near the Hovercraft Landing Pad.


Tuesday November 18:
Sixteen birders saw and heard forty-five species of birds on a sunny November morning.
Highlights of the morning included the sighting of over five hundred Dunlin who came towards us in a huge cloud and moved along the shore. We followed one Clark's Grebe in our scopes as it swam towards Denman Island. Eight Western Grebes off shore caught our attention throughout the morning. We watched over three hundred Red-necked
Grebes and at least thirty Horned Grebes. Huge rafts of Surf, Black and White-winged Scoters stretched on for the length of Denman Island.
There were several Long-tailed Ducks off shore.
Sixteen birders found the following forty-five species of birds.
Canada Goose, Trumpeter Swan, American Wigeon, Mallard, Greater Scaup, Harlequin Duck, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Long-tailed Duck, Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Common Merganser, Red-breasted Merganser, Pacific Loon, Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Red-necked Grebe, Western Grebe, Clark's Grebe, Brandt's Cormorant, Double-crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Bald Eagle, Dunlin, Mew Gull, California Gull, Thayer's Gull,
Glaucous-winged Gull, Pigeon Guillemot, Rock Pigeon, Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, Steller's Jay, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Bushtit, European Starling, Spotted Towhee, Song Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, House Finch and House Sparrow.
"Rare Bird Alert: Black-tailed Gull"
A Black-tailed Gull in winter plumage was seen on the mudflats at the south end
of the Courtenay Air Park in Courtenay.

Monday November 17:
A Mourning Dove was seen in the 1900 block of Bay Street in Nanaimo.

Sunday November 09:

A Snow Bunting in winter plumage was seen on a gravelly/rocky area beside the road at Logan's Run in north Nanaimo, .
For further information on these sightings or for help in identifying a
bird please call The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store
@ (250) 390-3669
Toll Free @ 1-888-249-4145
e-mail:
thebackyard@shaw.ca
***********************************
Arrowsmith Naturalists
Guess Speaker " Chris Czajkowski," naturalist and author, will speak on "The
plants of Tweedsmuir Provincial Park".
Monday November 24, 2008@ 7:30 pm.
Springwood School
Parksville
********************************
The Nanoose Naturalists
Thursday December 11, 2008 @ 7:00 pm
Nanoose Library,
Nanoose Bay
**********************************
Everyone is welcome to join us for a 2-3 hour bird walk on the Sunday and
Tuesday mornings. We leave from the Store at 9 A.M. Sunday Mornings and go to a different location in and around Nanaimo and from the Parksville Beach Community Park at 9 A.M. on Tuesdays and go to different areas in and around the Oceanside area.
*****************************************
The Tuesday Bird Walk on Tuesday November 25 will be going to the Englishman River Estuary, Shelly Road side in Parksville.
Meet at the Parksville Community Park at the parking area in front of the playground area at 9:00 a.m.
***************************************
The Sunday Bird Walk on November 30, 2008 will be going to the Nanaimo River Estuary in south
Nanaimo.
Meet at the Bird Store at 9:00 A.M. or the parking area at the end of Raines Road at about 9:30 a.m.
***************************************
Good birding
Neil Robins
Nanaimo

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

RARE BIRD ALERT: BLACK-TAILED GULL

A rare BLACK-TAILED GULL was seen at the Parksville Community Park around noon on Wednesday November 19 2008.
Report by Christopher Stephens:
Hi all, seeing the report from Courteny of a Black tailed Gull, I thought it would be worth checking out the Parksville community park to see if there was anything of interest. In the volleyball sandpit near the gazebo was a group of California and other gulls, and in with them sharply stood out a a gull with yellow legs, slightly smaller than California's, with a noticeably darker back, about intermediate between breeding and winter plumage, with BRIGHT YELLOW EYES, AND A BILL TIP THAT WAS SOLID DEEP RED WITH A LITTLE BIT OF BLACK. The bird had a "lower to the ground, I guess shorter legs, than the Californiagulls.the flock flushed, circled around, and most of them landed back in the volleyball sandpit. I couldn't see the bird among them as they landed.It could be anywhere in the several reasonably sized groups of gulls in the park. The big gull roosts are on the volleyball sandpit, the roof of the old skating rink, and the little island just of the "point" of the park. also check the playground, lamps, and the road.
Second report from Christopher Stephens:
Hi all, I just went down to the Parksville Community Park with my camera to try for a photo of the BLACK TAILED GULL. It was out on the gravel bar/island in the south side of Parksville Bay. The bird flew out of the flock of California Gulls roosting there, giving me great views of it's bright white tail with WIDE BLACK BAND the bird settled in the water, and I got a few distant shots. I will post a couple on here soon. I lost track of the the bird again, and I believe it may have flown down to the second gravel bar a few hundred meters south, just off the Englishman River Estuary, in front of the R.V park. the two gravel bars are the gulls day roosts it seems, if you come early in the morning when there is little human disturbance, you can see many of the gulls on the volleyball sandpit in the field beside the skate park,which is easier than looking through the birds on the gravel bar. That is how I saw the bird originally.

Any further sightings or reports would be appreciated.
thebackyard@shaw.ca