Join Project FeederWatch! Starting November 1st.

Observe your backyard birds and contribute to science by joining Project FeederWatch. Running from November to April, Project FeederWatch is an important tool for tracking over 100 bird species that winter in North America. All you need to participate is some free time to watch, and an area where birds like to congregate. Participation is completely voluntary, with no set hours required. Any data you get is useful, whether you watch for twenty minutes or two weeks. More Information or Join Now

Monday, 31 October 2022

October 27 Bird Report

 

The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store

Weekly Bird Report

Nanaimo Bird Report, October 27, 2022

EXPLORE NATUREGO BIRDING:

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 was seen and location of your sighting.

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Please Note

Please check www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com early Tuesday and Sunday mornings to see if the walks have been cancelled!

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Green-winged Teal (R. Hocken)

Tuesday October 25, 2022:

The Tuesday Bird Walk went to the Plummer Road side of the Englishman River Estuary in Parksville. The weather was cloudy with showers and 6 degrees. A few highlights from the walk were, a Red-throated Loon, Greater Yellowlegs, and a Varied Thrush.

4 birders braved the weather and saw / heard the following 48 bird species:

Canada Goose

American Wigeon

Mallard

Northern Pintail

Green-winged Teal

Harlequin Duck

Surf Scoter

White-winged Scoter

Common Merganser

Red-breasted Merganser

Common Loon

Pacific Loon

Red-throated Loon

Red-necked Grebe

Horned Grebe

Pelagic Cormorant

Great Blue Heron

Northern Harrier

Bald Eagle

Killdeer

Greater Yellowlegs

Short-billed Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

Thayer’s Gull

 

California Gull

Common Murre

Anna’s Hummingbird

Belted Kingfisher

Downy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Common Raven

American Crow

Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Pacific Wren

Bewick’s Wren

Golden-crowned Kinglet

American Robin

Varied Thrush

European Starling

Spotted Towhee

Golden-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

Brewer’s Blackbird

Purple Finch

American Goldfinch

Brewer’s Blackbird (R. Hocken)

Friday October 21, 2022:

Two Snow Geese were seen feeding at Diver’s Lake in Nanaimo.

Sunday October 23, 2022:

The Sunday Bird Walk went to Nanaimo River Estuary in Nanaimo. The weather was sunny, a cool 5 degrees and no wind. A few highlights were a Greater Yellowlegs seen along the river from the parking lot, a Northern Shrike that stayed near its perch during the walk and an American Kestrel was seen perched in a bare shrub in the middle of the estuary.

15 birders saw and heard the following 33 bird species:

Mallard

American Wigeon

Common Merganser

Great Blue Heron

Cooper’s Hawk

Bald Eagle

American Kestrel

Killdeer

Black Oystercatcher

Greater Yellowlegs

Iceland (Thayer’s) Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

Eurasian Collared Dove

Anna’s Hummingbird

Belted Kingfisher

Northern Flicker

American Crow

Common Raven

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Bewick’s Wren

American Robin

Northern Shrike

European Starling

Spotted Towhee

White-crowned Sparrow

Golden-crowned Sparrow

Savanah Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Fox Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

Red-winged Blackbird

House Finch

American Goldfinch

 

Snow Goose (R. Hocken)

If you have any birds to report or need help identifying, just email or call the store, thebackyard@shaw.ca or 250-390-3669, toll-free 1-888-808-BIRD (2473).

The Backyard Bird Walks

Our bird walks go out Sunday mornings in Nanaimo and Tuesday mornings in Parksville and Qualicum Beach area, are easy walks that go for two to three hours (back for lunch is the plan). Bring binoculars and a field guide. The walks are weather pending.

Please check our blog (www.thebirdstore.blogspot.comfor any cancelations.

The Tuesday Bird Walk, November 1, 2022

The Tuesday Bird Walk will be Going to Rathtrevor Provincial Parkin Parksville.

Please meet directly at the beach entrance in the main parking lot (lot #1) at 9:00 am. Weather cooperating.

The Sunday Bird Walk, October 30, 2022

This week’s Sunday Bird Walk will be going to the Neck Point Park in Nanaimo.

Meet at The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 9:00am or at the parking lot at Neck Point at 9:15 am. Weather cooperating.

For cancelled bird walks due to weather, please check The Backyard blog at www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com on the day of the bird walk. A notice will be up before 8:00am if there is a cancelation.

Good birding! Colin Bartlett

The Backyard
Wildbird and Nature Store

6314 Metral Drive V9T-2L8
Phone: 250-390-3669

Email: thebackyard@shaw.ca

Blog: www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Website: www.thebackyard.ca

 

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Please Note

Please check www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com early Tuesday and Sunday mornings to see if the walks have been cancelled!

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THE BACKYARD WILDBIRD & NATURE STORE

6314 Metral Drive

Nanaimo, B.C. V9T-2L8

Phone: 250-390-3669

Toll-Free: 1(888) 808-BIRD [2473]

Email: thebackyard@shaw.ca 

Blog: www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com

Website: www.thebackyard.ca

Sunday, 23 October 2022

Clear Skies - the ISS and the Moon and Planets

 
The International Space Station will be making a few nice morning passes over the next several days, but I’ve only included those after 7 a.m.

On Monday, Oct 24, the ISS will rise in the WSW at 7:11 a.m. and pass almost directly overhead.  It will then drop to the ENE horizon at 7:18.

On Wednesday, Oct 26, ISS will appear low in the west at 7:12 a.m. as it emerges from Earth’s shadow.  It will then climb two thirds of the way up the sky in the north at 7:15 and will drop towards the ENE horizon about 7:20.

Thursday, Oct 28, will the ISS appear in the WNW at 7:13, climb high in the north by 7:16 and then descend to the eastern horizon at 7:21.

Finally, on Saturday, Oct 30, ISS will appear in the WNW at 7:13 a.m., climb two thirds of the way up the sky in the north, and then set in the east at 7:22.

The Moon

There is a New Moon, meaning the Moon passes near the Sun, on Tuesday, Oct 25.  Over the next few days, look for a thin crescent Moon low to the horizon near where the Sun sets.  By the weekend, you should be able to see the crescent and the face of the Moon lighted with Earthshine, which can make a very pretty photo.


The planets

Saturn is still visible in the south, about 20 degrees above the horizon around 9 p.m.  Although not really bright, it is the brightest object in that part of the sky.

On November 1, the Moon will be just below and left of Saturn

Jupiter is shining brightly in the southeast in the evening, reaching its highest point in the south about 11 p.m.  As a reminder, with a pair of binoculars, you may be able to make out the four bright moons of Jupiter.

On November 4, the Moon will be just to the lower left of Jupiter.

Mars is rising in the ENE around 9 p.m.  It is easily identified by being almost as bright as the star Aldebaran, which is to its upper right.  Both may have a reddish cast, but Mars is more distinctly so.  Mars will remain visible most of the night as it travels across the sky towards the west.  Of course, it doesn’t travel that way; it appears to as we rotate under it.

On November 10, the Moon will be to the upper right of Mars.

There will be an eclipse of the Moon in a couple weeks, followed by a potentially nice meteor shower a few days later, both of which I’ll talk about in my next Clear Skies.

Clear skies.

David

Wednesday, 19 October 2022

The Backyard's Bird Report October 19, 2022

 

The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store

Nanaimo Bird Report

October 19, 2022


“EXPLORE NATURE” --- GO BIRDING:

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 was seen and location of your sighting.
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Long-tailed Duck (R. Hocken)

Tuesday October 18, 2022:

The Tuesday Bird Walk went to Columbia Beach in French Creek. The weather was sunny, winds calm, tide going out and 12 degrees. A few highlights from the walk were, a pair of Yellow-rumped Warblers in the bushes near French Creek, a Long-tailed Duck in with a flock of Surf Scoters and hearing the call of a Common Loon while standing on the shore looking for birds.

10 birders saw and heard the following 48 bird species:

American Wigeon

Mallard

Harlequin Duck

Surf Scoter

Long-tailed Duck

Red-breasted Merganser

California Quail

Common Loon

Pacific Loon

Red-necked Grebe

Horned Grebe

Double-crested Cormorant

Great Blue Heron

Bald Eagle

Cooper’s Hawk

Merlin

Killdeer

Black Oystercatcher

Black-bellied Plover

Black Turnstone

Greater Yellowlegs

Bonaparte’s Gull

Short-billed Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

Thayer’s Gull

California Gull

Marbled Murrelet

Rock Pigeon

Anna’s Hummingbird

Belted Kingfisher

Northern Flicker

Common Raven

American Crow

Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Bewick’s Wren

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

American Robin

European Starling

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Spotted Towhee

Golden-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Savannah Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

House Finch

House Sparrow


Long-billed Dowitcher (R. Hocken)

Sunday October 16, 2022:

The Sunday Bird Walk went to Buttertubs Marsh in Nanaimo. The weather was sunny and 11 degrees. A Long-billed Dowitcher was seen foraging along the marsh edge along with a Common Snipe. 4 Snow Geese fly over heading south and a Northern Shoveler was seen in the marsh near the entrance at Buttertubs Drive. The birds were a little busier than the last walk here.

10 birders saw and heard the following 35 bird species:

Snow Goose

Canada Goose

Wood Duck

Mallard.

Green-winged Teal

Northern Shoveler

Ring-necked Duck

Pied-billed Grebe

Great Blue Heron

Bald Eagle

Merlin

Kill Deer

Long-billed Dowitcher

Common Snipe

American Coot

Anna’s Hummingbird

Downy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Common Raven

Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Bushtit

Bewick’s Wren

Marsh Wren

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

American Robin

Cedar Waxwing

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Spotted Towhee

Song Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

Red-winged Blackbird

House Finch

American Goldfinch

House Sparrow


Spotted Towhee (R. Hocken)

Backyard Bird Notes: 

Well, it seems our long summer is going to change quickly to fall. This week was the first time there was dew on the vehicles in the morning and the birds are noticing the difference in the weather as well. With how dry it has been the birds have been quiet at the backyard feeders but this week I have had what feels like an explosion of activity in the backyard. Juncos, towhees, chickadees, and Golden-crowned Sparrows are all back and it is great to see. I am waiting to see if the Steller’s Jays return this year or if there is enough natural seed that they stay up at the higher elevations.

With the weather changing and the rain coming make sure you bird feeders are kept dry. Using a cover will help but also only use enough seed for a day or two, so if your feeder does get soaking wet, it is easier to clean and less bird seed is wasted.

Have your bird feeders clean and ready as they will be busy with the change in the weather.

If you have any birds to report or need help identifying, just email or call the store, thebackyard@shaw.ca or 250-390-3669, toll-free 1-888-808-BIRD (2473).

The Backyard Bird Walks

Our bird walks go out Sunday mornings in Nanaimo and Tuesday mornings in Parksville and Qualicum Beach area, are easy walks that go for two to three hours (back for lunch is the plan). Bring binoculars and a field guide. The walks are weather pending.

Please check our blog (www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com) for any cancelations.

The Tuesday Bird Walk, October 25, 2022

The Tuesday Bird Walk will be Going to the Englishman River Estuary on Plummer Road.

Please meet directly at the entrance to the trail at the corner of Plummer Road and Shorewood Drive at 9:00 am. Weather cooperating.

The Sunday Bird Walk, October 23, 2022

This week’s Sunday Bird Walk will be going to the Nanaimo River Estuary in South Nanaimo.

Meet at The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 9:00am or at the end of Raines Road at 9:15 am. Weather cooperating.

For cancelled bird walks due to weather, please check The Backyard blog at www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com on the day of the bird walk. A notice will be up before 8:00am if there is a cancelation.

Good birding! Colin Bartlett

 

 



Wednesday, 12 October 2022

 

The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store

Nanaimo Bird Report

October 12, 2022

“EXPLORE NATURE” --- GO BIRDING:
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 was seen and location of your sighting.
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Greater White-fronted Goose (R. Hocken)

Tuesday October 11, 2022:

The Tuesday Bird Walk went up to the Little Qualicum River Estuary with a stop at the Brant viewing stand. The weather was sunny, winds calm, tide going out and 15 degrees. A few highlights from the walk were, a Greater White-fronted Goose that flew low right in front of the viewing platform following a group of Canada Geese, a Yellow-billed Loon near the mouth of the river, and a small flock of 6 Brant flying up the strait. We also saw a pod of Orcas moving south and two Humpback Whales which look to be feeding.

12 birders saw and heard the following 54 bird species:

Brant

Canada Goose

Greater White-fronted Goose

American Wigeon

Mallard

Green-winged Teal

Harlequin Duck

Surf Scoter

White-winged Scoter

Common Merganser

Red-breasted Merganser

Common Loon

Pacific Loon

Yellow-billed Loon

Red-necked Grebe

Horned Grebe

Western Grebe

Double-crested Cormorant

Pelagic Cormorant

Great Blue Heron

Red-tailed Hawk

Bald Eagle

Cooper’s Hawk

Killdeer

Black Oystercatcher

Black Turnstone

Least Sandpiper

Baird’s Sandpiper

Greater Yellowlegs

Bonaparte’s Gull

Short-billed Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

Ring-billed Gull

Thayer’s Gull

California Gull

Common Murre

Eurasian Collared Dove

Anna’s Hummingbird

Belted Kingfisher

Pileated Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Common Raven

American Crow

American Robin

European Starling

Golden-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Savannah Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

Red-winged Blackbird

Brewer’s Blackbird

House Finch

American Goldfinch

Varied Thrush (J. Morrison)

Sunday October 9, 2022

The Sunday Bird Walk was cancelled for the Thanksgiving Weekend.

A lone Turkey Vulture was seen soaring by the cliffs on Gabriola Island.

Monday October 10, 2022:

Varied Thrush was heard and seen on Gabriola Island.

Dark-eyed Junco (R. Hocken)

If you have any birds to report or need help identifying, just email or call the store, thebackyard@shaw.ca or 250-390-3669, toll-free 1-888-808-BIRD (2473).

The Backyard Bird Walks

Our bird walks go out Sunday mornings in Nanaimo and Tuesday mornings in Parksville and Qualicum Beach area, are easy walks that go for two to three hours (back for lunch is the plan). Bring binoculars and a field guide. The walks are weather pending.

Please check our blog (www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com) for any cancelations.

The Tuesday Bird Walk, October 18, 2022

The Tuesday Bird Walk will be Going to Columbia Beach in French Creek.

Meet at the Parksville Tourist Information Center parking lot, located by Hwy 19A, Northwest Bay Road and Franklin’s Gull Road in Parksville, at 9:00 am or meet at the parking area on Admiral Tryon Blvd, off Columbia Drive and Hwy 19A, at 9:15. Weather cooperating.

The Sunday Bird Walk, October 16, 2022

This week’s Sunday Bird Walk will be going to Buttertubs Marsh in Nanaimo.

Meet at The Backyard Wildbird & Nature Store at 9:00am or at the marsh entrance at the end of Buttertubs Drive off Bowen Road at 9:15 am. Weather cooperating.

For cancelled bird walks due to weather, please check The Backyard blog at www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com on the day of the bird walk. A notice will be up before 8:00am if there is a cancelation.

Good birding! Colin Bartlett

Wednesday, 5 October 2022

Bird Report October 5, 2022

 

The Backyard Wildbird and Nature Store

 

Nanaimo Bird Report

October 5, 2022


“EXPLORE NATURE” --- GO BIRDING:

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 was seen and location of your sighting.
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Harlequin Duck (R. Hocken)

Tuesday October 4, 2022:

The Tuesday Bird Walk went up to the Englishman River Estuary, Shelly Road. The weather was sunny, winds calm, tide was out and on the way in and 14 degrees. A few highlights from the walk were, Yellow-rumped Warblers feeding the shrubs along the trail, many flocks of Pacific Loons flying, past and 3 Common Murres was seen out in the strait, along with two Humpback Whales moving north.

15 birders saw and heard the following 47 bird species:

Canada Goose

American Wigeon

Mallard

Harlequin Duck

Surf Scoter

White-winged Scoter

Common Merganser

Red-breasted Merganser

Common Loon

Pacific Loon

Red-necked Grebe

Common Murre

Anna’s Hummingbird

Belted Kingfisher

Downy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Common Raven

American Crow

Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Brown Creeper

Bewick’s Wren

Pacific Wren

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Horned Grebe

Double-crested Cormorant

Great Blue Heron

Red-tailed Hawk

Bald Eagle

Merlin

Kestrel

Killdeer

Short-billed Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

California Gull

American Robin

Cedar Waxwing

European Starling

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Spotted Towhee

Golden-crowned Sparrow

Savannah Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Fox Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

House Finch

Purple Finch


Yellow-rumped Warbler (R. Hocken)

Sunday October 2, 2022:

Unfortunately, the Sunday Bird Walk was cancelled this week and will also be cancelled for October 9, Thanksgiving Weekend.

A flock of Yellow-rumped Warblers were seen on the Maki Road Trail, along the Nanaimo River.

Bushtits on a suet feeder

Backyard Bird Notes: 

With the continuing warm dry weather one thing the birds are looking for is water. There are no water puddles or small streams for the to drink from as they have all dried up. Providing a simple shallow water source to your backyard will attract a variety of birds. Songbirds prefer a shallow water source so they can easily wade into the water, like a saucer from a planter that is an inch or so deep. Place it in an open area where birds can see it but still a few feet away from a shrub or tree if they need shelter. Change the water regularly, and clean with the bleach solution of one part bleach to nine parts water. Birds have great hearing, and the sound of moving water helps to attract them. Birds can hear the simple dripping sound of water from a great distance and will be attract to the water. Adding a fountain or dripper to your water source will help the birds find your backyard. Make your own dripper with a pop bottle. Tie a string or wire around the neck of the bottle so it can be hung above your water source. Poke a small pin hole in the bottom, fill with water and replace the cap. Hang over your water source and slowly unscrew the cap to achieve a slow steady drip.

If you have any birds to report or need help identifying, just email or call the store, thebackyard@shaw.ca or 250-390-3669, toll-free 1-888-808-BIRD (2473).

The Backyard Bird Walks

Our bird walks go out Sunday mornings in Nanaimo and Tuesday mornings in Parksville and Qualicum Beach area, are easy walks that go for two to three hours (back for lunch is the plan). Bring binoculars and a field guide. The walks are weather pending.

Please check our blog (www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com) for any cancelations.

The Tuesday Bird Walk, October 11, 2022

The Tuesday Bird Walk will be Going to Little Qualicum River Estuary (Marshall Stevenson Estuary), stopping first at the Brant Veiwing Stand in Qualicum Beach.

Meet at the Parksville Tourist Information Center parking lot, located by Hwy 19A, Northwest Bay Road and Franklin’s Gull Road in Parksville, at 9:00 am or meet at the Brant Viewing Stand at the end of Qualicum Beach at 9:15am or at the end of Surfside Drive off of Kinkade Road at 9:45. Weather cooperating.

The Sunday Bird Walk, CANCELLED

This week’s Sunday Bird Walk will be cancelled but will resume on October 16th.

Check the blog for updates and location.

For cancelled bird walks due to weather, please check The Backyard blog at www.thebirdstore.blogspot.com on the day of the bird walk. A notice will be up before 8:00am if there is a cancelation.

Good birding! Colin Bartlett