The Backyard's Weekly Bird Walks will be resuming on Tuesday September 5th and Sunday September 10th. Locations and more information in the most recent post.

Saturday, 21 December 2019

Nanaimo Weekly Bird Report December 21, 2019

The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store

Nanaimo Bird Report

December 21, 2019


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

Tuesday December 17, 2019:

A small flock of Snow Geese and a Great White-front Goose continue to be seen at the Parksville Community on the sports field.

The Tuesday Bird Walk went to Columbia Beach / French Creek. The weather very windy, tides were high and very choppy. Temperature was five degrees with a steady blowing rain. Eight die hard birders braved the weather to see Common Goldeneye, Bufflehead, Brant, and other species bobbing in the waves and slowly flying past. Along the river Common Mergansers, widgeon and Mallards were seen. A walk through the wooded area provided a bit of shelter and sightings of House Finch, Pine Siskins, Steller’s Jay and a pair of Pacific Wrens. Down at the other end of Admiral Tryon blvd was a large flock of Mew Gulls sheltering in the bay and seen in the pond were Hooded Merganser and Ring-necked Ducks.

Eight birders heard and saw the following 44 species:


Canada Goose


Harlequin Duck

American Widgeon

Ring-necked Duck

Surf Scoter

Black Scoter

Hooded Merganser


Common Goldeneye

Red-breasted Merganser

Common Merganser

Pelagic Cormorant

Double-crested Cormorant

Pacific Loon

Common Loon

Great Blue Heron

Bald Eagle

Black Oystercatcher

Black Turnstone


Black-bellied Plover

Mew Gull

Thayer’s Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

Rock Pigeon

Anna’s Hummingbird

Northern Flicker

Northwestern Crow

Common Raven

Steller’s Jay

Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Pacific Wren

American Robin

Spotted Towhee

Song Sparrow

Golden-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

House Finch

Purple Finch

Pine Siskin

House Sparrow

Photo: Pine Siskin (J. Morrison)

Backyard Feeder Notes:

It is that time of year for the annual Christmas Bird Count. This year will be the 120th Christmas Bird Count and the Nanaimo count will be held on December 28, 2019. Data is collected by volunteers to help understand winter bird populations, movement and distribution of winter birds and changes such as development, loss of habitat, or environmental changes such as weather or diseases.

The Christmas Bird Count was started because of another tradition called the Christmas Side Hunt, a competition to see who could bring back the biggest bounty of feathers. The Audubon Society was just beginning and decided that it would be better to count birds than shoot them, at which time the first Christmas Bird Count was started on December 25, 1900. The first count had 27 participants in 25 count areas, from New Brunswick to Pacific Grove California, counted 90 species with a total of 18,500 individual birds.

Anyone can volunteer and participate in a Christmas Bird Count especially if you are interested in birds, beginner or expert birder. To participate please contact us for more information.

There is also the Christmas Feeder Count. The Feeder Count allows you to participate by watching your backyard feeders and counting what you see on Saturday December 28, 2019. Count forms are available at The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store.

Photo: Spotted Towhee (R. Hocken)

The Sunday Bird Walk January 5, 2020:

The next Sunday Bird Walk will be going to Buttertubs Marsh.

Meet at The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 9:00am or meet at the parking lot at the end of Buttertubs Drive at 9:15 am.

The Tuesday Bird Walk January 7, 2020:

The next Tuesday Bird Walk will be going to the Englishman River Estuary, Shelley Road side.

Meet at the Parksville Tourist Information Center parking lot, located by Hwy 19A, Northwest Bay road in Parksville, at 9:00 am or meet at the end of Shelley Road at 9:10.

Please Note:
Check this site ( early Tuesday and Sunday on stormy mornings to see if the walks have been cancelled!

Good birding!

Colin Bartlett

The Backyard

Wildbird and Nature Store
6314 Metral Drive V9T-2L8
Phone: 250-390-3669


No comments: