DNCB outing No. 2016-21 to Burnaby Lake

DNCB at Burnaby Lake - photo by David H (click on photo to see large version)

DNCB at Burnaby Lake – photo by David H (click on photo to see large version)

On a beautiful DNCB Wednesday, twenty-four of us met at the Nature House in Burnaby Lake Regional Park and had an awesome outing wandering the trails of the park.  Lots of neat sightings; check out the visual evidence by our photogs Uma (aka Denise), Brian A, Terry, David & Noreen, Marion S, Glen B, Pat, Maureen and newbie Dennis (aka Rodney) Dangerfield on our DNCB Picasa site.

At 7:30 a.m., eight of us car-pooled brilliantly from Petra’s in two vehicles (Chris had Glen, Roger 2 and Margaretha, Mike had Terry, Hans and me).  Mike took Roger’s short-cuts through Burnaby, and this morning’s traffic was very heavy, so we arrived 15 minutes late at the Nature House parking lot at 8:45 a.m. where the other 16 were patiently waiting (Roger M, Marion S, Richmond’s Donna T, Angela B & Brian A, Rupert’s Roy, Solveig and computerless Gordon, sisters Pat & Maureen, North Delta Jean G, “gone for the Summer World Travelers” David & Noreen, North Van Rick H, flying Uma, and newbie Rodney Dangerfield.  That’s 24; DNCBers love their name in print.

Following introductions, Metro Van Park Interpreter, Mona Matson, took our mandatory Group Photo at the Nature House while scintillating Rufous Hummingbirds, Brown-headed Cowbirds and gorgeous Swallowtail and other butterflies flitted among the flowers and feeders.  Then she joined us as we wandered out to the viewing boardwalk and lookout onto the lake.  Lots of colourful Wood Duck families on the path, on railings, in trees, and close to shore.  Our photogs love shooting babies; other families of Mallards and Canada Geese there too.  A sole Sandhill Crane was casing out the Lookout as we arrived (no colts seen this year according to Mona). Other up-close-and-personal sightings included: nesting Pied-billed Grebes, three Teal species, Cinnamon, Blue- and Green-winged, Long-billed Dowitcher, Northern Shovelers, Gadwall and a pair of Killdeer caught mating, thrilling a few DNCBers. Tree Swallows were flying in and out of the many boxes; we also saw lots of Violet-green and Barn Swallows (finally), plus the common regulars.  We were blanked on Yellow-headed Blackbirds.  David H got a photo of a Willow Flycatcher which no one else saw.

We walked the trail through the woods to the Cariboo Dam and Fish Ladder.  Saw the usual suspects, Downy Woodpeckers (no Red-breasted Sapsuckers), House and American Goldfinches, several Hummers including an Anna’s, Golden-crowned Kinglets, some saw and photographed a Swainson’s Thrush, heard Bewick’s/Pacific Wrens and Wilson’s Warblers.  Other possible warblers there include: Black-throated Gray, Orange-crowned and Common Yellowthroats.  Bushtits were feeding young.

At the Painted Turtle Nesting Site, a Spotted Sandpiper was “bobbing” along on the lily pads.  No American Dippers seen at the Dam, but Painted Turtle No. 126 was neat to see.  Our walk back to the parking lot was uneventful, save for the continuous chatting and bonding of DNCBers.  At 11:30 a.m., some departed, while many of us drove to the Rowing Club at the other end of the lake.  Lots of Barn Swallows, Wood Ducks and Great Blue Herons here, and huge Bull Frogs on the Lily Pads were impressive.

No Ospreys, Scaup or Mergansers seen today, so eight of us went to the Great Bear Pub in Burnaby for lunch.  Although it was approaching 1:00 p.m. some of us had the $8:00 Brunch of eggs, bacon, sausage, ham, potatoes, etc.  It was huge and delicious, especially with two pints of draught beer (I forget the brand).  As usual, I faded into dreamland on the ride back to Tsawwassen (no idea what route we took, but we arrived fairly late, around 4:00 p.m.).  Nonetheless, another very enjoyable DNCB outing.

Next Wednesday, June 1, we will leave Petra’s at 7:30 a.m. for an outing in the new Surrey Bend Regional Park.  We expect to meet at the SBRP park parking lot at 8:30 a.m.

On Sunday, May 29, I will be leading a Friends of Semiahmoo Bay morning outing in Mud Bay Park, starting at 9:00 a.m.  Delta Nats will have our “hands-on” Display at the Delta Landfill Open House on Saturday, June 4.  All welcome to both these events.  Check out more info, reports, photos, and a new DNCB Destinations List on our website at www(dot)dncb(dot)wordpress(dot)com.  As always, if this rambling drivel irritates you, let me know and I will remove you from my e-mail List.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

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Filed under *DNCB, Blue-winged Teal, Burnaby Lake, Cinnamon Teal, Douglas Squirrel, Long-billed Dowitcher, Pied-billed Grebe, Sandhill Crane, Spotted Sandpiper, Swainson's Thrush, Willow Flycatcher, Wilson’s Warbler

DNCB outing No. 2016-20 to Minnekhada Regional Park


DNCB at Minnekhada – photo by Roger (click on photo to see large version)

Seventeen DNCBers gathered at Minnekhada Regional Park in Coquitlam on Wednesday for a beautiful walk and climb in the woods.  Lots of interesting sightings including bears, baby birds; check out the photos and video evidence on our DNCB Picasa site.

Eleven of us car-pooled nicely in three vehicles from Ladner and Petra’s at 7:30 a.m.  We were slightly behind schedule (back road shortcuts again), arriving at the Minnekhada Lodge parking lot at 8:40 a.m.  The others were entertained while waiting for us as the pair of Sandhill Cranes with their two colts were wandering among the trees around the beautifully landscaped lodge.  We all got good looks throughout the day of this family as well as at least two other pair which may not have had young.

From Minnekhada (Glen)

Following introductions, Roger took the Group Photo before we wandered down the entrance road to the Lookout over the Lower Marsh.  Lots of birds singing, including Swainson’s and Varied Thrushes, Wilson’s Warblers, Yellow Warblers, Flycatchers (Glen got a shot of a Pacific Slope Flycatcher) plus the common regulars.

From the Lookout, a Common Yellowthroat was carrying food, but we couldn’t find his nest.  Lots of young families in the Marsh including Wood Ducks, Mallards and Canada Geese.  We started our leisurely walk around the lake, disrobing as the sun’s heat warmed us up.  A few noisy Bullfrogs were photo targets for some.  When we got to the heavier climbing path, some decided to remain around the flatter ground.  The climbing path was not too bad as it was dry and not slippery and covered with wet leaves as it sometimes has been.  We heard and even saw several singing Pacific Wrens.  Lots of evidence (holes in trunks) of Red-breasted Sapsuckers, but we didn’t see any.  Some saw a pair of Pileated Woodpeckers, Northern Flickers and Downy Woodpeckers.  Along the trail between the Upper and Lower Marshes, we saw some Ring-necked Ducks, Bufflehead, Northern Shovelers and Scaup; not sure whether any of these species nest here.  Interestingly, Maureen took a photo of us here from the other side of the Marsh, then later got a shot of a Black Bear crossing the same way.

We continued along the Mid-Marsh Trail to the Low Knoll Lookout.  Although the view was magnificent, we were blanked on Western Tanagers and Orioles which we have seen from here in the past.  The nesting Dark-eyed Juncos were entertaining as was a beautiful Tiger Lily.  We followed the Fern Trail back to the Lodge, and had a lot of neat sightings along the way.  Roger got an amazing video of a Black Bear on the path.

From Minnekhada Lodge Bear Encounter by Roger

Mary found a weird looking deceased Shrew Mole.

RM_Shrew Mole found by Mary Tait

Shrew Mole (RM)

Lots of Snails and Slugs on the trail too.  We ran into the wandering Sandhill Crane family again, and I saw a very colourful Black-headed Grosbeak.  Some other beautiful Wildflowers there too (check photos).

Our spread-out group got back to the Lodge around Noon and we shared stories of our sightings.  Everyone wanted to go to the Gillnetter Pub for lunch, but some had to return home to domestic responsibilities.  I’m told the lunch was awesome with Rufous Hummers entertaining.  I slept soundly on the ride home while Glen & Chris discussed the usual inane world issues.  Another grand DNCB outing.

Next Wednesday, May 25, we will go to Roger Meyer’s old stomping grounds, Burnaby Lake, meeting at the Nature House, Piper Avenue parking lot around 8:30 a.m.

Check out reports and photos of earlier outings (by others since I have been busy at BC Nature AGM in Comox Valley) on our website.  Your comments are encouraged, and let me know if these missives annoy you and you want off my List. Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

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Filed under *DNCB, Black Bear, Minnekhada Park, Pacific-slope Flycatcher, Pileated Woodpecker, Sandhill Crane, Shrew Mole, Wilson’s Warbler, Yellow Warbler

DNCB Outing No. 2016-19 to Colony Farm

DNCB at Colony Farm (photo by David & Noreen) - click on photo to see large version

23 DNCB at Colony Farm (photo by David & Noreen) – click on photo to see large version

Photos below by Roger (RM), Terry (TC), Glen (GB), Jack (JMac), Marion (MS), Pat, David & Noreen (D&N) from our DNCB Picasa site.

I have been too busy this week (BCN AGM in Comox Valley, etc.) to do a report on last Wednesday’s outing to Colony Farm.  Check out the photos on our DNCB Picasa site.

We were 25 participants (copied) and had a super morning.

Lazuli Bunting (D&N)

Lazuli Bunting (D&N)

Hi-lites included our “Target Bird”, Lazuli Bunting, plus families of Wood & Mallard Ducks, Mourning Doves and Band-tailed Pigeons, Hummers, Warblers (Common Yellowthroat, Yellow), a “tattooed” Rabbit,

Black rabbit with ear tattoo - 7019 ERB (Pat)

rabbit with ear tattoo – 7019 ERB (Pat)

banded Redwings, and lots of gorgeous flowers.

Note that Wednesday May 18 outing is to Minnekhada Regional Park, hopefully meeting at Minnekhada Lodge at 8:30 a.m.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

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Next Wednesday, May 18, we will leave Petra’s at 7:30 a.m. for an outing to Minnekhada Regional Park, Coquitlam.  Meet at Minnekhada Lodge parking lot around 8:30 am.

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Filed under *DNCB, Band-tailed Pigeon, Colony Farm, Lazuli Bunting, Mink, Mourning Dove

DNCB Outing No. 2016-18 to Pt. Whitehorn and Tennant Lake, Washington


DNCB at Pt. Whitehorn (photo by David H) – click on photo for large version

Photos by David, Terry, Glen, Jack, Brian on our DNCB Picasa site.

Thirteen enthusiastic DNC Avianers gathered on a breezy and soppy morning at the Blaine Harbor parking lot for an outing to two separate destinations in Whatcom County.  At 8:30, the lucky number of participants, which oddly enough included only two ladies, squeezed into just three vehicles and efficiently convoyed south on Route 548 to the first location at Pt. Whitehorn Marine Reserve.  The lead car with WR Alice, Burnaby Roy, North Van Richard and pilot WR Al was expertly followed by the other two, driven by Mike B and David H, with passengers Margaretha S, Richmond’s Brian, Chris McV, Terry C, Ladner Jack, Glen B and Tom B.

The Pt. Whitehorn reserve, which features a 1 km trail through 54 acres of mixed forest to spectacular viewpoints of the Straight of Georgia and San Juan Islands, had been visited by five members of the group as part of an outing in September 2014 (see DNCB Outing No. 2014-37).  The customary group picture taken at the beginning of the walk shows that moisture was still dripping from the trees, but the weather improved throughout the morning.  While Song Sparrows, Robins and Goldfinches were audible to most, the only birds seen and photographed on the way to the lookouts were a Brown Creeper and a Bewick’s Wren.


snail (DH)

However, the spring foliage was wonderful to look at, some Salmonberry bushes were still in bloom while others exhibited ripening fruit, and a colourful snail crossing the path caught the eye of at least one photog.  Ten hardy individuals decided to descend from the bluff via the switchback trail to the windswept cobble beach where they observed Harlequin Ducks, Surf Scoters, Pelagic Cormorants and, possibly, a Pacific Loon.

The less agile threesome enjoyed the view from the bluff and gazed in amazement at the corkscrew Oregon Maple growing on the cliff.

How did this tree grow like that"

How did this tree grow like that? (JMac)

The weather had improved dramatically for the drive through the picturesque countryside to the second destination.  En route, a quick detour was taken to Terrell Lake where two Canada Geese families with their waddling offspring and a lone fisherman were encountered.  On arrival at Tennant Lake, it became clear that no one other than I, WR Al, had ever been there.  The 624-acre site includes a shallow peat-bog lake of some 80 acres surrounded by extensive wetlands, fields, and a forest and riparian zone.

The park also has an interpretive centre, a fragrance garden with 200 species, an observation tower and several great trails.  While some in the group headed off to touch, smell and enjoy the beauty of the more than 200 different plants,


Savannah Sparrow (BA)

others observed a Savannah Sparrow gathering morsels in an adjacent pasture.

Soon almost everyone scrambled up the 15 meters to the top of the tower to view the lake and to gaze at those below including two hopping domestic bunnies.

Then it was off on the path through the wetlands where Marsh Wrens were rattling, Red-winged Blackbirds were squeaking and Goldfinches and Yellowthroats were singing.

At the start of the elevated boardwalk which meanders through swamp and marsh habitats along the edge of the lake, the troop espied a female Tree Swallow perched on a nearby branch.  Soon her mate joined her and the couple made love and made love again and again while the fascinated onlookers blushed.

Mike B, who had tarried too long on the tower and had wandered off in the wrong direction, missed the amorous tryst.  Also observed on the boardwalk loop were a Yellow Warbler, a male Rufous Hummer, a pair of Cowbirds and a Downy Woodpecker.

And the Water Lilies with their yellow blossoms which covered much of the lake were a treat for the eyes.

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After marching a distance of about 5 km at the two venues, everyone thought that lunch at a Mexican restaurant in nearby Ferndale was in order.  Although only 20 or so avian species were observed and photographed and a couple of others were heard only, all thirteen participants had to agree that it was another fabulous DNCB expedition.  After all, the weather had improve from cool and soggy to almost excellent, the trees, bushes and wetland- and water plants were in their finest colours, the scenery was great and one of the destinations was brand new.

Report by Al Schulze

Next Wednesday, May 11, we will leave Petra’s at 7:30 a.m. for an outing to Colony Farm Regional Park, Coquitlam.  Meet at Community Gardens Parking lot around 8:30 am.

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Filed under *DNCB, Great Horned Owl, Harlequin Duck, Muskrat, Pelagic Cormorant, Point Whitehorn Marine Reserve, Tennant Lake, Yellow Warbler

DNCB Outing No. 2016-17 to Brydon Lagoon & Hi-Knoll Park


DNCB at Brydon Lagoon (KB)

Twenty-two DNCBers (see names at end) enjoyed another gorgeous Wednesday morning wandering around Brydon Lagoon and Hi-Knoll Park on the Langley-Surrey border.  It was meant to be a Wildflower outing, however, with the earlier Spring weather in BC and our outing being a bit later than last year’s, the Fawn Lilies and Trilliums had finished flowering.  But check out many other beaut photos of plants, fungi, people and birds by our Photogs Brian A, Liz S, Jack M, Marion S, Terry C, Pat S, Maureen S, Roger M, Ken B, and Noreen & David on our DNCB Picasa site.

Nine of us car-pooled nicely in three vehicles from Petra’s at 7:30 a.m., arriving on time before 8:30 a.m. at the designated Brydon Lagoon parking lot.  Lots of folk waiting for us including White Rock Al who gave some brief comments on the area, which many ignored as they were more interested in the getting to the Shorebird pond below the path.  About 30 Long-billed Dowitchers and three Least Sandpipers, in breeding plumage, took precedence over Al’s (and my) briefing.

We heard later from nature photographer John Gordon and his sidekick Coz that nine Wilson’s Snipe had been seen in this pond this past week; we were blanked.  This area at the park entrance was a real birding bonus as a pair of Common Yellowthroats cavorting in a bush seemed unconcerned with the horde of photogs surrounding them.

Savannah Sparrow (N&D)

Savannah Sparrow (N&D)

Savannah Sparrows posed too.  And on the telephone wire we saw four species of Swallows; Tree, Barn, Violet-green and Northern Rough-winged, all up-close-and-personal for clear identification.

Before heading to the Brydon Lagoon, we gathered for Ken to take the obligatory Group Photo (22 in it but somehow Mike B counted 26?).  Only Gadwall, American Coots and Mallards seen in the Lagoon with lots of little birds in the surrounding bushes; Bushtits, Song and Golden-crowned Sparrows, Spotted Towhees, Red-winged Blackbirds, and a couple of Brown-headed Blackbirds.

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At the end of the lagoon a Mallard pair with nine tiny ducklings was heart-warming to some.

The Anna’s Hummingbirds were flitting in the same place as other years on the trail leading to Hi-Knoll; saw Rufous Hummers too.

Lots of Marsh Wrens calling, and we heard Bewick’s Wrens later in the woods.

Marsh Wren (TC)

Marsh Wren (TC)

The little bridge over the Nicomekl River was as idyllic as always and several wildflower species were in colourful bloom along the way (see Picasa photos).

At the road parking lot and entrance to Hi-Knoll Park, a Northern Flicker was in the dead tree where we saw the Hairy Woodpecker last year.  We wandered up the trail into the forest park, mostly second and third growth but still pretty and serene.  A quiet walk, I didn’t even hear Pacific Wrens.  At the trail end in the open area of hydro lines, the White-crowned Sparrows were there again.  A Cooper’s Hawk swirled above us showing his banded tail.  And a Pileated Woodpecker posed briefly on a tower for Liz to take a silhouette photo.  We were blanked on Orange-crowned Warblers, but some were very pleased that we found a washroom.

We walked back along a different trail, more Hummers, some brilliant American Goldfinches.  As always, the group was very spread out.  One splinter group took a wrong trail where, fortuitously, Ken spotted a Barred Owl roosting beside a tree trunk.  We got excited and while many were fumbling for their cameras it flew off right over our heads.  Terry was the only successful photog, getting a shot on the wing as it flew by.

Barred Owl (TC)

Barred Owl (TC)

The Owl pair called to each other, but we weren’t able to find them again.

On return in the marsh area, we took the trail past the Bald Eagle’s nest with Mom sitting on eggs.

Bald Eagle in nest (JM)

Bald Eagle in nest (JM)

The Snipe were not at the tree where we saw them last year, but we found an Anna’s Hummingbird sitting in her nest, well camouflaged by leaves.  A juvenile Red-tailed Hawk (without a red tail) circling above was impressive.

Red-tailed Hawk (TC)

Red-tailed Hawk (TC)

The trail back around the other side of the Lagoon was eventful with more baby ducklings, several Red-eared Sliders on logs, and a couple of young tattooed chicks smoking on a bench.  No Green Herons.

Back at the parking lot, being 11:30 a.m. we decided to go just down the road to Samz Neighbourhood Pub for lunch.  Another good decision; my Turkey Clubhouse Sandwich and pint of Canadian was delicious (note: only one pint of beer as I was feeling the brunt of a couple of heavy Rum-swilling days of birthday celebrations).  On the ride back to Tsawwassen, I napped with Hans in the back seat as Roger and Mike reminisced about their misspent youth.  Another awesome DNCB outing.

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Next Wednesday, May 4, we will leave Petra’s at 7:30 a.m. on a new outing to Pt. Whitehorn and Tennant Lake in Washington State, led by White Rock Al Schulze.  We will meet at the Peace Arch Park parking lot (behind Duty-free shop) at 8:00 a.m. to car-pool across the border.  Then we will meet in the Blaine Harbor Marina parking lot (at washrooms) on Marine Drive at 8:30 a.m. to car-pool from there https://goo.gl/2BxIgb.

Don’t forget our Delta Nats monthly meeting next Tuesday, May 3, at 7:30 p.m. at the Benediction Lutheran Church in Tsawwassen where Peter Ward will give a scintillating presentation on his birding and water adventures in Chile and Argentina.  As always, comments encouraged, check out the earlier reports, photos and additional info on our website, and let me know if you want off the List to receive these scintillating (twice, I like the word) reports.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

The Twenty-two were: Ken B & Anne A, Roger M, Maureen S & Pat S, Terry C, Marion S, Richmond Brian A, David & Noreen, Ladner Jack M, Liz S, WR Al, Rob & Marylile, Roger (Two) K, Mike B, Johnny Mac, Hans-Ulf, Richard H, Margaretha S and me.

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Filed under *DNCB, Bald Eagle, Barred Owl, Brydon Lagoon, Cooper's Hawk, Hi-Knoll Park, Least Sandpiper, Long-billed Dowitcher, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Pileated Woodpecker, Red-tailed Hawk

DNCB Outing No. 2016-16 to Several Ladner Parks


DNCB at Ladner Harbour (photo by TC)

Twenty-six DNCBers (names at end) enjoyed a record hot (28 degrees) Wednesday morning of birding in three Parks in Ladner.  Lots of neat sightings; check out photos by Brian BA), Liz(LS), Jim (JK), Terry (TC), Pat (PS) and more at our DNCB Picasa site.

Nine of us car-pooled nicely from Petra’s in three vehicles at 7:30 a.m. driving straight through the Ladner farm roads and town to Ladner Harbour Park.  On arrival at 8:00 a.m., most of the rest were there trying to find calling Wilson’s and Orange-crowned Warblers in the trees around the parking lot.  We joined them and found a singing Bewick’s Wren (one of many on the day) and a cavity-nesting Black-capped Chickadee.

The construction to install the recently-arrived Heritage Home transported from North Delta to house the Park Manager raised a few enquiries as we started our march into the park.

Some tried listening for birds/warblers in the trees, but as regularly occurs on our “casual“ outings, the focus on chatting and re-acquainting with friends takes precedence over bird searches.  So, before the group broke off into chat groups, Terry took a Group Photo (22) as the brilliant warming sun shone down on us.  Although there was nesting material at various spots under the roof of the Picnic Shelter, there was no evidence of successful wren nesting (see last year’s DNCB Outing 2015-13 report).  An active Bushtit nest entertained us for a while as parents flew in and out.

The trail was peaceful and cool as we ran into the occasional dog walker.  We saw normal stuff like Northern Flickers and Downy Woodpeckers, Robins (but no Swainson’s or Varied Thrushes), House Finches and both Rufous and Anna’s Hummingbirds.  We finally got a nice view of a Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon) near the marina.

We walked off trail to the river where lots of Marsh Wrens were chattering.  Pairs of Green-winged Teal and Mallards were lingering near shore.  The cat tails were high so we only saw one Greater Yellowlegs fly up.  Time-challenged Liz met us at the infamous non-Lookout and a friendly dog walker took another Group Photo with Liz and “Robinson” (dog’s name?) included in it.

DNCB Group with dog (LS)

DNCB Group with dog (LS)

We saw a few Tree Swallows as Guru Mary T led us back to the parking lot through the Dog Pound.  Lots of Bald Eagles (one Red-tailed Hawk) circling above and Great Blue Herons posing, even on branches over the slough.  Kirsten tried in vain to turn a Song Sparrow into a Flycatcher.

We “convoyed” from Ladner Harbour Park to Ferry Road and the park behind Chesapeake Condos next to the slough.  I counted 16 vehicles in this convoy, almost all singles; not commendable car-pooling.  In the slough were pairs of American Wigeon, Gadwall, Mallards and thankfully, beautiful Wood Ducks.  Marion heard a Pacific-slope Flycatcher and we had Sparrow species (White-crowned, etc.), but we couldn’t find our target White-throated Sparrow near Tree No. 112.  Lots of commentary, mostly positive, about the tree and plant removal and re-planting of Cedars, Fir and other trees.  Interestingly, several dead 15 foot trunks were cut near the base, we think to stop any re-growth on them, and to save them as useful sources of bugs for food and future cavity nests.



Since Stormcat Paula volunteered to carry our $6000 Scope, we used it on the bridge over the slough to spot Wood Ducks, House Sparrows and a Racoon sleeping high in a tree.

On return down the trail, Rob M got excited when a pair of Downy Woodpeckers briefly mated above us.

Next stop, about 100 yards further down Ferry Road, was the South Arm Marshes Wildlife Management Area.  Not much new stuff as we wandered down the peaceful main trail.  We stared down an American Robin sitting on eggs in her nest right next to the trail.  At the Lookout, Gerhard won the lottery as there was a bagful of beer cans for his Boy Scout collection.  The view over the marsh back to Ladner and out over the Fraser (obviously the south arm) was brilliant.  We left the lookout for the trail’s end and right next to the river.  Here we finally saw our Shorebirds, up-close-and-personal.  Long-billed Dowitchers (in reddish plumage) and both Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs were feeding in the mud.  A flock of Dunlin, several with black bellies, were close by too.

Red-tailed Hawk (TC)

Red-tailed Hawk (TC)

Also, a pair of stunning Common Mergansers and Green-winged Teal.  Wandering back to the entrance, Jonathan spotted a juvenile Red-tailed Hawk roosting just above us on the trail.

We also saw another Robin staring back at us from her nest.

Now 11:30 a.m. a dozen (Baker’s dozen as Paula joined us late) of us decided to have lunch at the Rusty Anchor Pub, at the marina down the road.  Another good decision as my Steak sandwich and two pints of Canadian were scrumptious, and Julie & Claire really looked after us.  Following lunch, several came to my home at RiverWoods to check out the nesting Great-horned Owls.  Bob & Claire welcomed us behind their home for good views of the two “fuzz balls” in the trunk cavity nest with Mom standing guard on a branch a meter away.

Great Horned Owl (f) in nest hole (PS)

Great Horned Owl (f) in nest hole (PS)

We were rushed so I didn’t find Dad, but I know he was roosting in the trees nearby in full sight of his spouse and kids.  A vivid American Goldfinch and nesting Northern Flickers also entertained us here.

American Goldfinch (BA)

American Goldfinch (BA)

We got back to Tsawwassen around 2:00 p.m., another super DNCB outing.

Next Wednesday, April 27, we’ll leave Petra’s at 7:30 a.m. for Brydon Lagoon and Hi-Knoll Park in Langley.  We expect to meet others at the parking lot on 53 Ave., at bottom of 198A St. around 8:30 a.m. (or earlier, depending on whether Roger drives).  Hopefully some Langley Nats will join us on this outing.

As always, comments welcome, check out our website for more info, earlier reports (including on the Watershed Park Fish Release event last Sunday), and let me know if you want to be removed from the List to receive these long-winded, weekly tirades.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

The 26 were:  Terry C, Liz S, Brian A, Rob & Marylile, Mike B, Jonathan & Lorraine, Marion S, Jim K, Johnny Mac, Jean G & Pauline O, sisters Pat & Maureen, Mary T, Roger Two K, Ray & Stormcat Paula, Sheila Y, David & Noreen, Kirsten, Gerhard, Richard H and me.

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Filed under *DNCB, Bald Eagle, Dunlin, Great Horned Owl, Ladner Harbour Park, Ladner S.Arm Marsh, Long-billed Dowitcher, Pacific-slope Flycatcher, Red-tailed Hawk, Yellow-rumped Warbler

Delta’s Annual Fish Release & Nature Walk at Watershed Park

On Sunday, April 17, your Delta Nats set up their “hands-on” Display at Watershed Park for the 14th annual Delta Corporation Fish Release.  It was a gorgeous day and hundreds of kids and adults enjoyed the event from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  Continue reading

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