Sunday, 17 March 2013

Nanaimo bird report, March 17, 2013



                    Red Crossbill: Ralph Hocken Photo:

 
NANAIMO BIRD REPORT -----” GO BIRDING--EXPLORE NATURE”

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


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

Sunday, March 17, 2013:
The Sunday bird walk went to the Little Qualicum River Estuary in Qualicum Beach. The morning was sunny and cool with a strong wind coming off  the water.  Thousands of gulls greeted us at the start of the walk.  We watched a large raft of Harlequin Ducks, Green-winged Teal, Surf Scoters, White-winged Scoters, Black Scoters, Long-tailed Ducks, Bufflehead and Common Goldeneye were further off shore at the viewing platform off of Highway 19A. Tree Swallows and Violet-green Swallows were dancing over the river hawking insects.
Twenty birders saw and heard the following forty-three species:
Canada Goose, Brant, Mallard, American Widgeon,  Eurasian Widgeon, Northern Pintail, Greater Scaup, Harlequin Duck, Green-winged Teal, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Long-tailed Duck, Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Common Merganser, Pacific Loon, Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Great Blue Heron, Bald Eagle, Black Turnstone, Black Oystercatcher, Killdeer, Mew Gull, California Gull, Thayer's Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Belted Kingfisher, Northern Flicker, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Tree Swallow, Violet-green Swallow, American Robin, European Starling, Spotted Towhee, Red-winged Blackbird, Brewer’s Blackbird, House Finch, Song Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow and Dark-eyed Junco. 

Saturday, March 16:
Four Evening Grosbeaks, Tree Swallows and American Goldfinch were seen at the Morningstar Ponds in French Creek. 

Friday, March 15:
Three Yellow-rumped Warblers were seen at the Morningstar Ponds in French Creek. 

 Wednesday, March 13:
A Rufous Hummingbird was seen at Shore Drive and Hammond Bay Road in Nanaimo.  This is our first report of a returning Rufous Hummingbird.  Spring is on its way!

Tuesday, March 12:
The Tuesday bird walk went to the Little Qualicum River Estuary in Qualicum
Beach.  The morning was cloudy and calm. The shoreline at the viewing platform
 off Highway 19A was covered with gulls for as far as the eye could see. Brant
Geese, Surf Scoters, White-winged Scoters, Black Scoters, Bufflehead, Common  
Goldeneye and Long-tailed  Ducks formed a massive raft further off shore. The
Gulls took up the similar huge area at the estuary. They lifted and circled the
sky and landed on the gravel bars when an Eagle flew over. There was a large
 raft of Greater Scaup, Common  Goldeneye and Barrow’s Goldeneye near the
 shoreline. Further off shore there were  large numbers of mixed flocks of
 seabirds—much the same as we saw at the viewing platform earlier in the
 morning. Over ten Violet-green Swallows flew over head hawking
insects and we spotted a Red Crossbill at the top of a bush as we neared the
estuary. We caught the sight of four White-winged Crossbills perched on top
 of a conifer across the Conservation area. The bold white-wing markings and
the black scapulars  of the White-winged Crossbills were very distinctive through our spotting scopes.
The White-wing Crossbills stayed for a long period, giving us all long studying
looks. The White-winged Crossbills are normally found in areas outside of
southern  British Columbia. This is the first sighting of them for the Tuesday bird
walks, making a terrific end to a great day of birding!.
Eleven birders saw and heard the following forty-four species:
Canada Goose, Brant, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Greater Scaup, Harlequin Duck,
Green-winged Teal, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Black Scoter, Long-tailed
 Duck, Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Barrow’s Goldeneye, Common Merganser,
 Red-breasted Merganser, Pacific Loon, Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Great Blue
Heron, Bald Eagle, Merlin, Black Turnstone, Black Oystercatcher, Killdeer, Mew Gull,
California Gull, Herring Gull, Thayer's Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Belted Kingfisher,
Northern Flicker, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Violet-green Swallow,
American Robin, European Starling, Spotted Towhee,  Red-winged Blackbird,
Brewer’s Blackbird, Red Crossbill, White-winged Crossbill, House Finch and  Song
Sparrow.
 
“ Rare bird alert- Palm Warbler”
A Palm Warbler was seen at the Nanaimo River Estuary near the Viewing
Platform again today. The Palm Warbler is usually seen east of the Rockies.
 
Monday, March 11:
Yellow-rumped Warblers, Ruby-crowned Kinglets and Cedar Waxwings were seen at
 Buttertubs Marsh in Nanaimo.
 
 “Rare Bird Alert- Citrine Wagtail”
The Citrine Wagtail was seen once again in Courtenay on March 07.
Directions to specific location: From Courtenay, cross the 17th St. Bridge
(Courtenay River). Turn right onto Comox Road (Dyke Rd) until the Pumping Station
 on the right hand side of the road. There is a dirt road across the road with a
For Sale sign on the left. Walk up the dirt road towards the steel chain blocking
 Vehicle access. The Wagtail has been observed on the left side of dirt road at the
 furthest row of trees.
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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 March 19, 2013 will be going to Rathtrevor Provincial Park in Parksville..

We will meet at Parksville Bay at the Lion's Playground parking area in Parksville at 9:00 a.m. or at the main parking lot at Rathtrevor Provincial Park at about 9:10 a.m.

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The Sunday Bird Walk on March 24, 2013, will be going to Neck Point in Nanaimo. We will meet at the bird store at 9:00 a.m. or at the parking lot at Neck Point Park off Hammond Bay Road in Nanaimo at about 9:20 A.M.

Good birding
Neil Robins

THE BACKYARD WILDBIRD & NATURE STORE
6314 Metral Drive Nanaimo B.C. V9T-2L8

Phone:250-390-3669
Fax: 250-390-1633

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