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We are looking for sales associates who can help us help others “enjoy nature in your own backyard “.
- retail experience an asset but not necessary
- ability to lift 20 lb bags of seed for our customers
- positive, energetic, enthusiastic and willing to learn
- flexible schedule and able to work weekends
We provide training so you can provide informed advice about feeding the birds and our quality products.
Stop by and talk to us or drop off a resume.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Nanaimo bird report, November 18, 2012

Short-eared Owl being mobbed by Northwestern Crow: Ralph Hocken photo.


Please remember, when reporting a sighting, to leave your name and phone number along with the date, the species and location of your sighting.
To report your sightings phone the Store at 250-390-3669 or e-mail us at


Sunday, November 18, 2012:

The Sunday bird walk went to Nanaimo River Estuary in south Nanaimo. The morning was cloudy with rain showers.  The highlights included watching  two Short-eared Owls and four Northern Harriers being mobbed by Common Ravens and Northwestern Crows for most of the morning.
Six birders saw and hear the following thirty-four species:
Trumpeter Swan,  Great Blue Heron,  American Wigeon,  Mallard, Common Goldeneye,  Bufflehead, Hooded Merganser, Common Merganser,  Bald Eagle, Short-eared Owl, Cooper’s Hawk, Northern Harrier, Red-tailed Hawk, Thayer’s Gull, Mew Gull,  Ring-billed Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Belted Kingfisher, Eurasian-collared Dove, Northern Flicker, Hairy Woodpecker, Downey Woodpecker, Northwestern Crow,  Common Raven,  European Starling, Spotted Towhee, Song Sparrow, Fox Sparrow, Lincolns Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow,  Golden-crowned Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, House Finch and Pine Siskin. 

“Rare bird alert-White Wagtail”

The White Wagtail was seen again today, as well as photographed at the same location in Courtaney as reported on Wednesday November 14. 

Saturday, November 17:
A Varied Thrush was seen eating the berries off  Mountain Ash Tree in the 200 block of Dawkins Lane in Nanaimo. 

Friday November 16:
“Rare bird alert-White Wagtail”
The White Wagtail was seen again today at the same location in Courtney as seen on Wednesday November 14. 

Thursday, November 15:
A Snowy Owl was seen sitting on a house along Orchard Circle in north Nanaimo. 

Wednesday November 14:
Rare bird alert-White Wagtail: 

Hello Fellow Bird Watchers,

        The excellent autumn weather today produced a really good bird sighting.

First we went down to the Courtenay Estuary. Going along the Comox Courtenay road from Courtenay we stopped at the sewage pumping station parking lot, on the right hand side. Directly across the road is a dirt farm road heading north thru the trees, with a large 'For Sale' sign posted. Up this farm road 100 meters there is a steel cable blocking vehicle access. Going under this we noticed an unusual gray and white medium sized bird bobbing its very long tail (With white outer tail feathers) Walking around in the mud and grass catching insects on the left hand side, just passed a small pond. It was quite tame and allowed us to get within 10 meters of it in excellent sunny/light conditions. The field marks and 'G.I.S.S.'suggests this was a first year bird. 

It did fly, in an undulating flight (Woodpecker style) and gave out a distinctive call, a very sharp loud descending buzz. We stayed around for a while and it returned to its original feeding spot while we watched it for over half a hour.

 Having experienced the Wagtail species in Sussex, England, and fifty years ago! It was great to see this type of bird once again in Canada. A good V.I.'life bird for both of us. 

David & Adel Routledge 

“Rare bird alert-Red Knot:
Ten Red Knots were seen resting on a rock outcropping at Neck Point Park in Nanaimo.

Tuesday, November 13:
The Tuesday bird walk went to Rathtrevor Provincial Park in Parksville. The morning was cloudy.  As we neared the Strait of Georgia we were greeted with a strong, biting wind. The walk through the forest was wind free and quite warm. The highlights included seeing hundreds of Dunlin, Black Turnstones and Black-bellied Plover feeding along the tide line. We saw several Horned Grebes, Red-necked Grebes, Common Goldeneye, Red-breasted Mergansers, Pacific Loons and Common Loons on the rough water of the strait. A Cooper’s Hawk was spotted circling above the edge of the forest.  We had great looks at two Brown Creepers creeping up the trunks of conifer trees.
Sixteen birders saw and heard the following forty-two species:
American Wigeon, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Harlequin Duck, Bufflehead,
Common Goldeneye, Surf Scoter, White-winged Scoter, Common Merganser, Red-breasted Merganser, Pacific Loon, Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Red-necked Grebe, Double-crested Cormorant, Bald Eagle, Cooper ’s Hawk, Bonaparte's Gull, Mew Gull, Thayer’s Gull, California Gull,Glaucous-winged Gull, Dunlin, Black Turnstone, Black-bellied Plover, Western Sandpiper, Northern Flicker, Steller’s Jay, Northwestern Crow, Common Raven, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Pacific Wren, Bewick's Wren, Brown Creeper, Varied Thrush, European Starling, Spotted Towhee, Song Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, Pine Siskin. 

A Northern Shrike was spotted sitting on a fence along Magnolia Drive in the Maple Glen area of Parksville. 

A Snowy Owl was seen sitting on a house roof along Thalia Place above the Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo. 

Several White-crowned Sparrows were hanging about the feeders in a backyard in upper Lantzville. 

Monday, November 12:
An Evening Grosbeak was seen in the trees on the Seventh Fairway of Fairwinds Golf Course.
Arrowsmith Naturalists meeting
Arrowsmith Naturalists meet Monday, November 26th at 7.30pm at Knox United Church on Pym Road in Parksville.  Guest speaker will be Bruce Cousins - "Purple Martins on Vancouver Island"
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 November 20 will be going to Columbia Beach. We will meet at Parksville Community Park at the parking lot near the Lions Playground at 9:00 A.M. or at the parking area along Admiral Tryon boulevard off Columbia Drive and highway 19a just north of the French Creek Bridge at about 9:10A.M.
************************************************************************************The Sunday Bird Walk on November 25, 2012 will be going to Rathtrevor Provincial Park in Parksville.
We will meet at the bird store at 9:00 a.m. or at the main parking lot at Rathtrevor Provincial Park at about 9:30 A.M.
Christmas Bird Count - Lantzville (Nanoose estuary) and Nanoose Bay area - Friday December 14, 2012
Contact Rhys Harrison at rhysharrison@shaw.ca  
or phone (250) 248-5305
Christmas Bird Count—Parksville/Qualicum Beach, December 16, 2012.
Contact Sandra Gray at saninerr@shaw.ca or phone 250-248-5565
Christmas Bird Count----Nanaimo, December 30, 2012
Contact Ryan Cathers at ryancathers@yahoo.com
 or phone 250-714-3947.
Subject: "SeaBC" Sea Bird Count Event
I'd like to encourage fellow birders to participate in this year's "SeaBC Sea Bird Count." You can participate in November, December or January. Hitch a coastal or offshore ride with a sailing or fishing buddy, or count while chartering or taking a cruise.
This citizen science project, in its second year, is organized by a group of nine long-distance birding sailors from around the world, including Wendy Clarke, Diana Doyle, Brenda Free, Yvonne Katchor, Beth Leonard, Katharine Lowrie, Devi Sharp, Jeanne Socrates, and Dorothy Wadlow.
Last year's inaugural count spanned 100º of latitude, from Maine to Antarctica. The Caribbean 1500, Baja Ha-Ha, Salty Dog Rally, Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC), Seven Seas Cruising Association, Island Cruising Association, Ocean Cruising Club, and many other organizations have adopted the project and helped spread the word to their fleets.
This year we are encouraging participants to take digital photos of any seabirds. All data goes to Cornell Lab of Ornithology's eBird database (www.ebird.org).
An instruction/tally sheet and additional information are available on the community page at Facebook.com/Birding.Aboard (under SeaBC/Resources), or by direct PDF download at: http://tinyurl.com/SeaBC-TallySheet.
Please join the count in any way you can and contribute much-needed information about pelagic birds!
Diana Doyle
m/v Semi-Local
St. Augustine, Florida

Good birding
Neil Robins
6314 Metral Drive
Nanaimo B.C.
Phone: 250-390-3669
Fax: 250-390-1633

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