DNCB Outing No. 2019-20 to Jackman Wetlands & Aldergrove Regional Park

Twenty DNCBers enjoyed another beautiful Wednesday in Langley Township at the Jackman Wetlands and Aldergrove Regional Parks.  Check out the spectacular photos of our sightings on our DNCB Flickr site.

Ten of us car-pooled magnificently at 7:30 am from Petra’s in two vehicles and, after a pleasant drive through the Surrey and Langley countryside, got to the Jackman Wetlands parking lot before 8:30 am, even with “shortcut” Roger driving.  The other ten welcomed us and, following the perfunctory introductions (I love big words even if I don’t know what they mean), Jim took the obligatory Group Photo.

DNCB 2019-20 Jackman_group47069810964_cab7722c0c_o

DNCB at Jackman wetlands – photo by Jim Kneesch

Our local expert Leaders, Marion and Joanne, briefed us on this new park, formerly a gravel pit with a Dozer School next door.  Then we began our walk on well groomed trails around the several wetlands ponds.

Some of our hi-lite sightings were: several brilliant Bullock’s Orioles (plus a nest), beaut pairs of Black-headed Grosbeaks, both Rufous and Anna’s iridescent Hummingbirds, probably nesting Pied-billed Grebes, an “interesting pair” of a male Lesser Scaup and a male Ring-necked Duck, Turkey Vultures, young families of Canada Geese, lots of Warblers calling (e.g. Wilson’s, Common Yellowthroat, Yellow), Bewick’s Wrens, Rough-winged Swallow (?), Sparrows (Savannah, Song, White-crowned), Killdeer, scintillating American Goldfinches. Glen’s eBird list below indicates we saw 31 species today.

Jackman Wetlands is a beautiful park, despite its Dog Training areas and Frisby Golf Course, with excellent bird habitat.  Interestingly, there were lots of trees planted and some nice blossoms, but I was struck by the vividly sparkling  yellow Scotch Broom (invasive species) randomly growing along the trails.

We got back to the parking lot around 11:00 am, several of us hot and sun-burned as the weather was warmer than we anticipated.  Thankfully, Roger could drive us to our next stop about 10 minutes down the road, Aldergrove Regional Park.  Roger had survived the attack of the Dog Trainer when he/Roger inadvertently ignited the duck calling machine in the middle of a field.  It was hilarious watching Roger jump.

Aldergrove RP, another new destination for DNCBers, was a pleasant walk through trees around another pond/wetland.  Being Noon, there was little bird activity (Common Yellowthroats), but the Nootka Rose bushes were beautiful, both looks and smell, and the flowers were full of feeding Honey Bees which was good to see. Western Painted Turtles nest here; we saw a turtle on a log but it was too far away to determine whether it was painted or the invasive Red-eared Slider Turtle.

Following our half-hour walk here, we drove to the Fox and Hounds Neighbourhood Pub in Aldergrove.  Lively Joy served the eleven of us in this “authentic” English pub.  My Special of Beef/Vegetable Soup, Salad and a Cheese & Bacon Melt Sandwich hit the spot, of course with a pint of their Fox Lager, along with a few of Mikey and Terry’s chips.  We left the pub and took the Roger & Mike guided tour home, past cemeteries, killing sites, marijuana greenhouses, umpteen birding spots, and other places I slept through.  We got back to Tsawwassen at 2:30 pm having enjoyed another awesome DNCB outing.

The Twenty were: our Organizer Terry C, our local leaders Marion & Joanne (who it turns out hadn’t been there for a year so were relatively useless-just kidding), wandering Roger M, the Bird Box Team of Jim K, Chris McV, Mike B2 and Roger K2, historian Mike B, PB Lorna, Langley Bob McCl, North Delta Jean G, sisters Pat & Maureen, eBirder & photog Glen B, Vancity Lidia J, South Surrey Wazza & Lynne, North Van Rick H and me.

Next Wednesday, May 22, we’ll leave Petra’s at 7:30 am for Minnekhada Regional Park in Coquitlam, planning to meet others at the Lodge parking lot at 8:30 am.

For more info on this outing, and other reports and photos, visit our website.  As always, your comments are encouraged, and let me know if these too frequent rambling reports are so irritating that you want off my email list.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

Glen Bodie’s eBird List
Jackman Wetlands, Metro Vancouver, British Columbia, CA
May 15, 2019 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Protocol: Traveling  2.0 mile(s)
31 species

Canada Goose  10     4 adults and 6 chicks
Mallard  X
Ring-necked Duck  1
Lesser Scaup  1
Pied-billed Grebe  2
Eurasian Collared-Dove  1
Anna’s Hummingbird  1
Rufous Hummingbird  4
Killdeer  2
Glaucous-winged Gull  X
Turkey Vulture  3
Bald Eagle  2
Northern Flicker  1
Northwestern Crow  X
Tree Swallow  6
Barn Swallow  7
Black-capped Chickadee  X
Bewick’s Wren  2
American Robin  X
European Starling  X
American Goldfinch  7
White-crowned Sparrow  3
Savannah Sparrow  2
Song Sparrow  X
Spotted Towhee  5
Bullock’s Oriole  4
Red-winged Blackbird  X
Common Yellowthroat  X     None seen, many heard
Yellow Warbler  2
Wilson’s Warbler  1
Black-headed Grosbeak  6


Posted in *DNCB, Aldergrove Regional Park, Bullock's Oriole, Jackman Wetlands, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Pied-billed Grebe, Ring-necked Duck, Turkey Vulture, Western Painted Turtle, Wilson’s Warbler, Yellow Warbler | Leave a comment

DNCB Ferry Outing No. 2019-19 to Victoria

Sixteen DNCBers enjoyed a long but fun Monday on our ferry outing to Victoria.  Check out the photo and video evidence on our DNCB Flickr site.

We took the 7:00 am ferry (Free) to Swartz Bay and the 5:00 pm back to Tsawwassen.  In between we had double-decker bus rides to and from Victoria (5 buck Day Pass), on top for neat views.  We met Vancouver Island residents “founding” DNCBers Rick & Marg and newbies Tom & Isabelle at the Parliament Buildings and they were instrumental in helping us find birds this day.  They also fit in nicely with the DNCB Chatfest.

DNCB_2019-19_Victoria_group On The Road Again.jpeg

DNCB at Government House, Victoria – photo by Roger Meyer

Under Terry’s guidance, we walked through Beacon Hill Park. Hilites were: an Orange-crowned Warbler, a pair of Great-horned Owls, Cooper’s Hawk, several Bewick’s Wrens, several modeling male Peacocks, several Great Blues at their Heronry, and lots of gorgeous flowers (Camas Lilies, Rhodos, etc.).  Glen’s eBird List below shows we had 26 species at the park.

Roger walked to Clover Point and got a neat video of a River Otter.  Others walked to Ogden’s Point, saw nothing, and took the bus to the Sticky Wicket pub.  Tom, Isabelle, Gerhard and I got tired at Mile 0, around 1:00 pm, and walked to the pub, a bit early but so good.  The Beef Burger soup was delicious along with three pints of Budweiser (on Special).  We caught the 3:40 bus back to Swartz Bay; I tried to sleep but PB Lorna kept laughing at Roger.

We saw lots of Pigeon Guillemots and Cormorants on the ferries, but no Bonaparte Gulls (I saw hundreds last Sunday).  The whole day was nice and sunny, but the wind on the ferry deck was cool.  We took a couple of Group Photos, on the ferry and in front of the Parliament Buildings.  It’s a very long day, lots of yawning and napping on the home ferry, but it’s a super fun DNCB outing.

We sixteen were: Organizer Terry C, ‘Vagrant” Roger M, newbies Tom & Isabelle, Old Faithful’s Rick & Marg, Gerhard, PB Lorna, Mike B, welcome back Jonathan & Lorraine, Vancity Lidia, photog & eBirder Glen B, Richmond Donna, Margaretha (we lost her at Noon), and me.

Wednesday May 15, we leave Petra’s at 7:30 am for a new destination, Jackman Wetlands in Langley, I think.

Next Wednesday, May 22, our destination is Minnekhada Regional Park in Coquitlam.

For info on these outings, and other reports and photos see our website.  If you’re finally sick and tired of receiving these gossipy, uninteresting missives, let me know and I’ll take you off my email list.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

Glen Bodie’s eBird Lists

3 Locations are included: Ferry trip (over and back), Clover Point (just Roger), and Beacon Hill Park (group)
Ferry Trip List (5 species)
Pelagic Cormorant   X
Double-crested Cormorant   X
Pigeon Guillemot   X
Surf Scoter   X
Pacific Loon   X
Clover Point List (2 species)
Black Oystercatchers   6
Harlequin ducks   7
River Otter   1
Beacon Hill Park List (26 species)
View this checklist online at https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S56242530
Canada Goose  10
American Wigeon  1
Mallard  X
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)  X
Anna’s Hummingbird  6
Glaucous-winged Gull  X
Great Blue Heron  7
Cooper’s Hawk  1
Bald Eagle  2
Great Horned Owl  2
Downy Woodpecker  1
Common Peafowl   15
Northwestern Crow  X
Tree Swallow  3
Violet-green Swallow  X
Chestnut-backed Chickadee  X
Bushtit  5
Bewick’s Wren  5
American Robin  2
European Starling  X
Dark-eyed Junco  5
White-crowned Sparrow  1
Savannah Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  1
Spotted Towhee  5
Orange-crowned Warbler  1


Posted in *DNCB, Beacon Hill Park, Clover Point, Cooper's Hawk, Great Horned Owl, Indian Peafowl, Orange-crowned Warbler, Pigeon Guillemot, River Otter, Victoria | Leave a comment

DNCB Outing No. 2019-18 to Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal and Reifel Bird Sanctuary

Sixteen DNCBers enjoyed a “local” outing on Wednesday to the Tsawwassen Ferry  terminal, then the ponds on TFN land, then Reifel Bird Sanctuary.  We had over 50 species seen (see Anne’s eBird list below); check out the photo evidence on our DNCB Flickr site.

It was another gorgeous Delta morning when most left Petra’s at 7:30 am, and eleven of us met at Beach Grove Park to check out the Great Horned Owl family.  We only found the Dad.  Mom and two owlets were also seen a few days ago.  A third owlet was taken to OWL a couple of weeks ago when it left the nest too early.  It will be released soon back in Beach Grove Park.  Wilson’s Warblers were heard here, mostly by our DNCB prodigy Kathryn.

We carried on to the ferry terminal causeway.  At the pull-out Jim took the first Group Photo (11)


DNCB at Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal – photo by Jim Kneesch

as we looked at Black Oystercatchers, Brant Geese, Surf Scoters, Common Loons and lots of Great Blue Herons from the nearby Heronry at Tsatsu Shores.  We were blanked on the White Pelican seen a few days earlier.

We moved on to the new “pond park” on the TFN land which was nicely filled with waterfowl.  We saw Gadwall, Bufflehead, Lesser Scaup, Green-winged Teal, Northern Shovelers, Northern Pintail, Jim spotted a Common Goldeneye, plus Mallards, American Wigeon and Canada Geese.  Marsh Wrens were everywhere, and lots of Sparrows too (Savannah, Golden- & White-crowned, Song, perhaps a Lincoln’s).  We continued on through the Ladner fields to Westham Island and Reifel.

We got to Reifel around 9:15 am and met the others, and a welcoming Black-headed Grosbeak at the entrance.  A dazzling male Yellow-rumped (Audubon’s) Warbler was in the same tree.  A lone Greater Yellowlegs was in the pond beneath the trees where the Black-crowned Night Herons normally roost.  As we started our walk among the hordes of ducks on the path, it was evident that this should be a good year for Wood Duck nesting.  There were lots of magnificent pairs around.  Unfortunately, there were also lots of House Sparrows and Brown-headed Cowbirds around too.  Interestingly, a White-fronted Goose was there too.  A “visitor” took our second Group Photo (16) at the customary Snow Goose sign.


DNCB at Reifel – photo by Jim Kneesch

We walked the outside trail for a change.  We were blanked on American Bitterns but did see Long-billed Dowitchers and a lone Spotted Sandpiper, with spots and tail bobbing. In the strait we could see hundreds of Peeps, but too far away to identify species, probably Least Sandpipers and others.  For raptors, we saw Northern Harriers and Red-tailed Hawks, and were surprised by a Sharp-shinned Hawk later near the entrance.  Barn Swallows were nesting in the sheds along the outer path and it was nice to see the Purple Martins at their condo lodge.  The resident male Sandhill Crane was sitting on egg(s) at their same nest (Canada Goose vacated the nest last weekend).  The female was on guard duty nearby.  We also saw last year’s juvenile at the entrance with two other young birds.

Approaching 11:45 am, we decided to go for lunch at our regular Ladner spot, Speed’s Pub.  I missed lunch as I spent an hour back at the causeway then TFN lands looking for my lost Hearing Aid Blue Tooth.  I was frantic, until arriving home around 4:00 pm, I found it on the counter where I left it in the morning.  Getting old sucks sometime.  I heard from Jim that the lunch, and beer, were delicious.  I had a Root Beer and Burger at A&W at 1:30 pm before doing a number of “chores” for daughter Erica.  Nonetheless, it was another awesome DNCB outing.

The sixteen were: photogs Jim K, Chris McV, Ladner Jack Mac, Glen B, sister Pat, and hopefully returnees Jonathan & Lorraine, loquacious Debbi H and her daughter “DNCB Prodigy” Kathryn, our Guru and eBirder Anne M, Mike B2, Roger K2, PB Lorna, Gerhard, relative newbie Pam M, and me.

On MONDAY, May 13, we will have an extra DNCB outing to Victoria, meeting on the 7:00 am ferry to Swartz Bay.

Then on Wednesday, May 15, our DNCB destination is Jackman Wetlands, Aldergrove. Leave Petra’s at 7:30; meet at 272nd Street and 10th avenue across from the Transfer Station at 8:30.

Also, this Saturday, May 11, Terry Carr will have our Nats Display at the Heritage Fair at the Harris Barn in Ladner.  Nat Geof Hacker will also have his interesting local heritage display there too.

For more info on these outings, and other info, reports and photos, see our website.  As always, your comments are welcome, and if these long-winded missives bore you, let me know and I’ll take you off my email list.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society (exhausted, but enjoying the record early Summer heat wave)

Anne’s eBird list: Reifel Bird Sanctuary, May 8, 2019, 9:10 AM
Delta Naturalists Casual Birding group
Number of Taxa: 52

1 Greater White-fronted Goose
40 Canada Goose
23 Wood Duck
16 Northern Shoveler
17 Gadwall
4 American Wigeon
40 Mallard
6 Northern Pintail
4 Green-winged Teal
2 Lesser Scaup
4 Common Merganser
4 Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)
1 Eurasian Collared-Dove
1 Anna’s Hummingbird
5 Sandhill Crane — Pair at nest; male sitting, female on bank
5 Western Sandpiper
500 peep sp. — Flyovers
9 Long-billed Dowitcher
1 Spotted Sandpiper
9 Greater Yellowlegs
7 Glaucous-winged Gull
2 Western x Glaucous-winged Gull (hybrid)
X gull sp.
4 Great Blue Heron
1 Sharp-shinned Hawk
6 Bald Eagle
1 Red-tailed Hawk
1 Downy Woodpecker
2 Northern Flicker
9 Northwestern Crow
12 Purple Martin
X Tree Swallow — Very common. Using nestboxes
X Barn Swallow
8 Black-capped Chickadee
1 Brown Creeper — At a nest box
10 Marsh Wren — Most at nests
2 American Robin
X European Starling
2 House Finch
2 American Goldfinch
X White-crowned Sparrow
10 Golden-crowned Sparrow
2 Savannah Sparrow
X Song Sparrow
7 Spotted Towhee
15 Red-winged Blackbird
18 Brown-headed Cowbird
10 Common Yellowthroat — heard singing on territory throughout
4 Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon’s)
1 Wilson’s Warbler
1 Black-headed Grosbeak
10 House Sparrow

Posted in *DNCB, Beach Grove, Black Oystercatcher, Great Horned Owl, Least Sandpiper, Lincoln’s Sparrow, Long-billed Dowitcher, Northern Harrier, Purple Martin, Red-tailed Hawk, Reifel, Sandhill Crane, Sharp-shinned Hawk, Spotted Sandpiper, TFN, Tsawwassen Ferry Port, White-fronted Goose, Wilson’s Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler | Leave a comment

DNCB Outing No. 2019-17 to UBC Botanical Gardens

Twenty-three DNCBers enjoyed another gorgeous Wednesday morning at UBC’s Botanical Gardens in Vancouver.  Check out the spectacular photos of the flowers, blossoms, people, and birds on our DNCB Flickr site.  Photogs are Terry, Chris, Jim and newbie Kathryn, with hopefully other participants posting their photos.

Some left Petra’s at 7:30 am, drove smoothly to UBC, and we all met at the Botanical Gardens entrance around 8:30 am.  We were fortunate to have two awesome expert Leaders, Garden Volunteers Nat Debbi Hlady and Bev Ramey.  It was a mild and sunny morning as Jim K took the first Group Photo at the entrance as we posed under a 7 million year old Tree species.


DNCB at UBC Botanical Gardens – photo by Jim Kneesch

Debbi and Bev led us first along the newly restored (since last year) lower Asian Way trails.  The trails were super smooth and the gardens were manicured and spectacular.  Many of the over 500 Rhododendron species (yes 500) in the Gardens were in beautiful bloom.  We didn’t see a lot of birds; Brian recorded 36 species seen there today (see list below).  I missed seeing most of the warblers (Orange-crowned, Yellow-rumped, Black-throated Gray, Townsend’s, Wilson’s) and Lincoln’s and Chipping Sparrows that others saw, but I was really stoked by the colourful blossoms and flowers, and the Rufous and Anna’s Hummingbirds iridescent displays.  The resident Barred Owl made a nice fly-past.

We also met entertaining and worldly Ian who built the Canopy Walk in the Gardens.  Many of us bravely wobbled our way through the tree tops on the swaying, scarily-safe, rope & wire bridges.  We didn’t see any birds (concentrating too much on avoiding falling), but it was a fun new adventure for us DNCBers.

After the Canopy Walk, we took the tunnel under the road to the upper part of the Gardens and the medicinal, cactus, and other neat gardens.  Some saw a Cooper’s Hawk, and seeing both Ruby- and Golden-crowned Kinglets and Hutton’s Vireo was nice.  With 23 participants, many of whom were first time visitors to the Gardens, meant that the chatter was monstrous, and not discouraged on our outings.  I heard numerous superlatives as the Gardens were spectacular this outing, which was later in the Spring than our other annual visits when we often experienced rain and fewer things in bloom.

We finished back at the entrance around 11:30 am and nine of us went to the Milltown Pub on the Fraser River.  The Cod and Chips were decent and two pints of Sapporo draught hit the spot.  I tried in vain to stay awake on the way home in the car with Ladner Jack Mac.  Another fantastic DNCB outing.

We 23 were: leaders Debbi H with daughter keen-eyed Kathryn M and our Godmother Bev R, eBirder Richmond Brian, our Guru Anne M, Marion & Kirsten, Ladner Jack Mac, the now-regular South Surrey couples Wazza & Lynne and Colin & Stephanie, Chris McV who chauffeured six in Margaretha’s van including PB Lorna, Mike B & Mike B2 & Jim K, North Van Richard H, Boundary Bay Valerie, our Organizer Terry C, Vancouver rabble-rouser Stephen P, and me.

Next Wednesday, May 8, will be a local outing, leaving Petra’s at 7:30 am for the Tsawwassen Ferry terminal, then driving to Reifel Bird Sanctuary, where we plan to meet others around 9:15 am.

For more info on our outings, plus other reports, photos and Club info, visit our website.

And don’t forget our Nats monthly meeting on Tuesday, May 7, 7:30 pm at the Benediction Lutheran Church in Tsawwassen.  Krista De Groot will give a presentation on Bird Collisions with Glass, Causes and Solutions.

This report is very late because I have been in Duncan on Vancouver Island since Thursday participating in the BC Nature AGM and Conference (plus playing golf).  As always, your comments are encouraged, and let me know if these weekly missives bore you and you want off my email list.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

eBird Checklist Summary for: May 1, 2019 at 7:00 AM to May 1, 2019 at 7:02 PM

Number of Checklists: 1   Number of Taxa: 35
Checklists included in this summary:
(1): UBC Botanical Garden
Date: May 1, 2019 at 8:17 AM

3 Eurasian Collared-Dove — (1)
2 Anna’s Hummingbird — (1)
3 Rufous Hummingbird — (1)
1 Great Blue Heron (Blue form) — (1)
1 Cooper’s Hawk — (1)
3 Bald Eagle — (1)
1 Barred Owl — (1)
6 Northern Flicker — (1)
2 Hutton’s Vireo — (1)
6 Northwestern Crow — (1)
3 Common Raven — (1)
X Tree Swallow — (1)
2 Barn Swallow — (1)
3 Black-capped Chickadee — (1)
5 Bushtit — (1)
1 Red-breasted Nuthatch — (1)
2 Pacific Wren — (1)
1 Golden-crowned Kinglet — (1)
1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet — (1)
10 American Robin — (1)
5 European Starling — (1)
6 House Finch — (1)
4 Pine Siskin — (1)
9 American Goldfinch — (1)
1 Chipping Sparrow — (1)
8 White-crowned Sparrow — (1)
3 Golden-crowned Sparrow — (1)
1 Lincoln’s Sparrow — (1)
6 Spotted Towhee — (1)
3 Red-winged Blackbird — (1)
2 Orange-crowned Warbler — (1)
3 Yellow-rumped Warbler — (1)
1 Black-throated Gray Warbler — (1)
1 Townsend’s Warbler — (1)
1 Wilson’s Warbler — (1)

Posted in *DNCB, Barred Owl, Black-throated Grey Warbler, Botanical Garden, Chipping Sparrow, Cooper's Hawk, Golden-crowned Kinglet, Hutton's Vireo, Lincoln’s Sparrow, Orange-crowned Warbler, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Townsend's Warbler, UBC, Wilson’s Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler | Leave a comment

DNCB Outing No. 2019-16 to Whidbey Island, USA

Sixteen DNCBers enjoyed a gorgeous Wednesday on our “away” outing to a number of parks on Whidbey Island.  We saw several species, including pelagic birds that we don’t often see in the BC lower mainland.  Check out the brilliant photos of the birds and vistas on our DNCB Flickr site.

We met at 7:30 am at the Peace Arch Park parking lot for car pooling.  Very commendable car-pooling as Roger had 6 in his van, Wazza had 4, Colin had 3, and three others met us at the Coupeville Ferry terminal for the 10:15 am sailing to Port Townsend.  There was a long line-up at the Border until the US Customs opened a few more gates at 8:00 am, so our 25 minute wait was not too unbearable.  The drive down I-5 and then through the farms and villages to the Deception Pass bridge and across Whidbey Island to Coupeville ferry terminal took nearly 2 hours, but it was simply beautiful, and the conversation, including Roger and Mike regaling us with stories of their adventures in this area over the past 60 years, was stimulating and fascinating.

Before boarding the ferry, we wandered around the terminal and had some neat sightings; Pigeon Guillemots, Horned and Pied-billed Grebes in the harbour, Mourning Doves (rarer now with the invasion of Eurasian Collared Doves) and several Swallow species on telephone lines.  We had 5 Swallow species this day, Tree, Violet-green, Barn, Cliff and Northern Rough-winged.  Lots of Cormorants around too, the most common being beautifully identifiable Brandt’s rather than Pelagic or Double-crested that we regularly see back home.  Pairs of spectacular Harlequin Ducks were also there.

On board, the 35 minute crossing to Port Townsend ($1.70US each way for Seniors) was incredible too.  We all stayed at the bow, which was a bit chilly with the wind, but the vistas all around us were stunning, and then as we approached and passed the rafts of pelagic species, the excitement crescendoed.  Rhinoceros Auklets, Common Murres, Red-breasted Mergansers and Red-necked Grebes were up-close-and-personal.  Port Townsend and Roger’s Brothel, although picturesque, were uneventful as we simply re-boarded for the return trip.  We finally organized a Group Photo on the return trip as we passed these same rafts of birds.


on Ferry to Port Townsend – photo by Roger Meyer

Back at the Coupeville terminal, we cased Crockett Lake where several waterfowl species were lingering; Bufflehead, Northern Pintail, Scaup, Killdeer and four Dowitchers.  A brilliant pair of Northern Harriers cruised by, and some saw a Turkey Vulture, others saw White Pelicans.  We started our walk through the RV Park and up the hill to Fort Casey.  Lots of Sparrows (Song, Savannah, White- and Golden-crowned) and other little birds along the path and keen-eyed Masae spotted the Orange-crowned Warblers and Chestnut-backed Chickadees in the bushes.  We heard but didn’t see California Quail. Richmond Brian’s eBird list (below) shows that we saw a nice total of 64 species on this outing.

Now past Noon, we relaxed on the remnants of the Fort’s building roof and ate our lunch, surrounded by fantastic views, fields of golden yellow Mustard flowers, and nesting Violet-green Swallows.  After lunch (for me a ham & cheese sandwich bought on the ferry with a G Water; boring but satisfying), we decided to go back down the hill to the cars and move to another park.

We headed back up highway 20 and stopped at Fort Ebey State Park.  It was neat driving through groves of big trees to a rocky beach, but not many birds and otherwise uneventful.  We moved on to Deception Pass State Park and Cranberry Lake where we normally stop on these outings.  Many of the same species seen here, but the highlight was a Whale spouting (possibly a Gray Whale).  We could see Rosario Point across the bay, so we decided to go there.

Rosario was a new spot for me with a spectacular circular trail overlooking the bay. And we had some beaut sightings here too; raft of 30+ Common Loons, Black Oystercatchers, Northern Rough-winged and Cliff Swallows, Brown Creeper.  Approaching 4:00 pm, and most of us feeling a bit tired, we decided to say our good byes and head for home.  Although much quieter than the morning ride, I stayed awake most of the trip back to Canada to savour the beautiful scenic drive along the Bayview Edison Road and Chuckanut Drive. Border was surprisingly smooth and I got home before 7:00 pm.  Another fantastic DNCB day.

The sixteen were: Storytellers Roger & Mike, Organizer Terry, Warren (Wazza), Lynne & daughter Heather and Gareth, Colin & Stephanie and Ladner Jack Mac, Richmond Brian, PB Lorna, Ladner’s Bryan & Masae, loner VanCity Lidia, and me.

Next Wednesday, May 1, we will leave Petra’s at 7:30 am for the UBC Botanical Gardens, meeting at the entrance around 8:15 am.  Garden Volunteer Debbi H will be leading this outing.

For more info on this and other outings, see our website.  As always, your comments are welcome, and let me know if these weekly missives bore you and you want off my email list.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society (1:00 am on my Birthday; going to bed)

eBird Checklist Summary for: Apr 24, 2019 at 7:00 AM to Apr 24, 2019 at 7:02 PM
Number of Checklists: 6  Number of Taxa: 64
Checklists included in this summary:
(1): Port Townsend-Keystone Ferry (Jefferson Co.)
Date: Apr 24, 2019 at 10:05 AM
(2): Port Townsend-Keystone Ferry (Island Co.)
Date: Apr 24, 2019 at 10:55 AM
(3): Keystone Ferry Landing
Date: Apr 24, 2019 at 11:42 AM
(4): Fort Ebey State Park
Date: Apr 24, 2019 at 1:58 PM
(5): Deception Pass SP — West Beach
Date: Apr 24, 2019 at 2:50 PM
(6): Rosario Beach / Rosario Head
Date: Apr 24, 2019 at 3:32 PM

12 Snow Goose — (6)
12 Brant (Black) — (2)
8 Canada Goose — (1),(2),(3)
1 Mallard — (3)
6 Northern Pintail — (3)
2 Green-winged Teal (American) — (3)
3 Greater/Lesser Scaup — (3)
8 Harlequin Duck — (1),(2),(6)
2 Surf Scoter — (5)
6 Bufflehead — (3)
10 Red-breasted Merganser — (1),(2)
1 California Quail — (6)
1 Pied-billed Grebe — (1)
1 Horned Grebe — (1)
8 Red-necked Grebe — (1),(2)
1 Rufous Hummingbird — (3)
2 Black Oystercatcher — (2),(6)
1 Killdeer — (3)
4 Short-billed/Long-billed Dowitcher — (3)
5 Common Murre — (1),(2)
29 Pigeon Guillemot — (1),(2),(5),(6)
60 Rhinoceros Auklet — (1),(2)
25 Bonaparte’s Gull — (1)
6 Western Gull — (1),(2)
18 Glaucous-winged Gull — (1),(2)
8 gull sp. — (5)
33 Common Loon — (1),(2),(6)
12 Brandt’s Cormorant — (1),(2)
31 Pelagic Cormorant — (1),(2),(3),(6)
2 Double-crested Cormorant — (2),(5)
2 American White Pelican — (3)
7 Great Blue Heron (Blue form) — (1),(3)
2 Turkey Vulture — (4),(6)
2 Northern Harrier — (3)
3 Bald Eagle — (3),(6)
1 Red-tailed Hawk — (4)
1 Belted Kingfisher — (6)
1 Hairy Woodpecker — (6)
1 Northern Flicker — (5)
20 American/Northwestern Crow — (3),(5),(6)
2 Northern Rough-winged Swallow — (6)
24 Tree Swallow — (3),(6)
6 Violet-green Swallow — (3)
16 Barn Swallow — (3),(6)
1 Cliff Swallow — (3)
1 Chestnut-backed Chickadee — (3)
1 Bewick’s Wren — (6)
1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet — (3)
15 American Robin — (3),(5),(6)
6 European Starling — (3)
2 Purple Finch — (5)
1 American Goldfinch — (6)
14 White-crowned Sparrow — (3),(5),(6)
1 Golden-crowned Sparrow — (3)
3 Savannah Sparrow — (3)
4 Song Sparrow — (3),(5)
8 Red-winged Blackbird — (3),(5)
2 Orange-crowned Warbler — (3)
1 Yellow-rumped Warbler — (3)
1 Pine Siskin (6) (Gareth)
Mourning Doves (Tom)
Eurasian Collared Doves (Tom)
1 Brewer’s Blackbird (Tom)
?? one other




Posted in *DNCB, Black Oystercatcher, Brandt's Cormorant, Brown Creeper, California Quail, Cliff Swallow, Common Murre, Coupeville, Cranberry Lake, Crockett Lake, Deception Pass Campground, Gray Whale, Harlequin Duck, Long-billed Dowitcher, Mourning Dove, Northern Harrier, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Orange-crowned Warbler, Pied-billed Grebe, Pigeon Guillemot, Port Townsend, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-necked Grebe, Rhinoceros Auklet, Rosario Point, Turkey Vulture, Whidbey Island, White Pelican | Leave a comment

DNCB Outing No. 2019-15 to Queen Elizabeth Park, Vancouver

About 26 folk spent Wednesday morning on a colourful DNCB outing in Queen Elizabeth Park in Vancouver.  Check out the beaut photo evidence of flora and birds on our DNCB Flickr site.

Some left Petra’s at 7:30 am, others came directly to meet at the Pitch & Putt entrance at 8:15 am.  It was a surprisingly smooth and quick drive into town on this overcast cool morning; I arrived with “oldie” DNCBers Rick & Marg before 8:00 am.  Not a lot of birds seen this morning, but the many gardens throughout this former gravel pit were manicured and full of richly gorgeous blossoms and flowers in full Spring bloom.


DNCB at QE Park – photo by Roger Meyer

Roger took the first of a few Group Photos before we started our circular walk through the trees and gardens.  With such a large diverse group, the chatfests were continual, but we did see a few neat birds. Bushtits and Hummingbirds, both Anna’s and Rufous, were seen frequently.  The more rare sightings were a surprisingly photogenic Hutton’s Vireo, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Red-breasted Nuthatch (4), Yellow-rumped (Audubon) Warblers, Varied Thrushes, and Marion’s spectacular Townsend’s Warbler to end our park visit.  We saw the regular common stuff, flickers, sparrows, finches, ducks in the ponds, etc., but, as normally happens here, the magnificent multi-coloured gardens were the main attraction (see photos).  Richmond Brian counted only 21 species seen today for our DNCB eBird List (see below).

We couldn’t find the resident Barred Owls, and it is too early for Western Tanagers and other Warbler species.  A gardener showed us an active Bushtit nest.  Some relatively-new artistic statues at the lookout near the Arboretum were especially interesting.  The bronze Photographer with a real “doobie” in his mouth amused me.  The “Bridge in the Bowl” and the Love Lock Structure were especially glorious spots to linger and search vainly for birds.  Besides Vancouver Island’s Rick & Marg, others making guest appearances today were nearby residents, Goaltender Everett & Sue, whose constant gibbering had them fitting in perfectly with our group.

We seemed to motor around the park in quicker fashion than our normal visits here.  It was before 11:30 am and we were back at our vehicles; nine of us decided to go to our “regular” Locus restaurant on Main Street.  Fred and his staff did not disappoint as we each ordered nine different lunches, some ordered breakfast, and everyone was pleased.  My Mushroom/Dill Pickle Soup, huge Ham, Cheese, Tomato & Egg Sammy, Salad, and Okanagan Springs 1516 Lager was too filling, but delish.  I wish I had accepted PB Lorna’s offer to share her King Shrimp.

The 26 were: our historians Roger & Mike B, Guru Anne, Boater Mike B2, PB Lorna, Richmond Brian, Aussie Nance, South Surrey’s Wazza & Lynn and Colin & Stephanie, David w/o swimmer Noreen, returnee Gerhard, wayward Marion & Kirsten, Ladner’s Hummingbird Custodians Bryan & Masae, newbies Everett & Sue, founding DNCBers Rick & Marg, Debbie & daughter Kathryn, our Organizer Terry and me. (25: I missed one somewhere?).

Next Wednesday, April 24, leaving Petra’s at 7:00 am, we will meet at 7:30 am at the Peace Arch Park parking lot to car pool to Whidbey Island USA.  See the MAPS & DIRECTIONS page for more detailed info on this all-day “away” outing

As always, your comments are encouraged, and let me know if you want off my email list to receive these warped records of our weekly wanderings.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society (2:30 am, going to bed)

eBird Checklist Summary for: Apr 17, 2019 at 7:00 AM to Apr 17, 2019 at 7:02 PM
Number of Checklists: 1
Number of Taxa: 21
Checklists included in this summary:
(1): Vancouver–Queen Elizabeth Park
Date: Apr 17, 2019 at 7:46 AM

2 Canada Goose — (1)
10 American Wigeon — (1)
35 Mallard — (1)
3 Anna’s Hummingbird — (1)
2 Rufous Hummingbird — (1)
6 Glaucous-winged Gull — (1)
2 Northern Flicker — (1)
1 Hutton’s Vireo — (1)
15 Northwestern Crow — (1)
12 Black-capped Chickadee — (1)
10 Bushtit — (1)
3 Red-breasted Nuthatch — (1)
1 Brown Creeper — (1)
12 Ruby-crowned Kinglet — (1)
5 American Robin — (1)
1 Dark-eyed Junco (Oregon) — (1)
2 White-crowned Sparrow — (1)
2 Song Sparrow — (1)
2 Spotted Towhee — (1)
6 Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon’s) — (1)
2 Townsend’s Warbler — (1)

Posted in *DNCB, Hutton's Vireo, Queen Elizabeth Park, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Townsend's Warbler, Varied Thrush, Yellow-rumped Warbler | Leave a comment

DNCB Outing No. 2019-14 to Brydon Lagoon & Hi-Knoll Park, Surrey

Twenty-three hardy DNCBers enjoyed a rainy, but comfortable if dressed appropriately, Wednesday morning in Langley at Brydon Lagoon and Hi-Knoll Park.  Check out the spectacular photographic evidence on our DNCB Flickr site.

Eight folk left Petra’s at 7:30 am, car-pooling brilliantly in two vehicles; the ride was smooth sailing, arriving at 8:15 am at the parking lot entrance to Brydon Lagoon, well-before the time-challenged leader.  The entrance to the trail around the Lagoon was newly landscaped since last year’s visit.  A passing dog-walker took our Group Photo (17 without a few late arrivers) under the new Brydon Lagoon sign, using Noreen’s camera.

IMG_4563 Brydon starting Group

DNCB at Brydon Lagoon – taken using Noreen’s camera

The neat species in the pond included an American Coot, several pairs of courting Ring-necked Ducks, Bufflehead, Northern Shovelers, Double-crested Cormorant, and other common waterfowl species.  Swallows were circling everywhere above the pond, hawking insects; mostly Tree and Violet-greens, but we also saw Northern Rough-winged and a number of Barn and Cliff Swallows.  A magical 5 swallow morning.

Along the pond trail we searched in vain for warblers, but got lots of good looks at Sparrow species (Song, White- and Golden-crowned), both Anna’s and Rufous Hummingbirds, American Goldfinches, and lots of Red-winged Blackbirds of various ages.  We had Purple Finches, but not House Finches this day.

From the trail while walking across the marsh, we saw a Canada Goose sitting in the Eagle’s nest.  Langley Field Naturalist Joanne said the goose had been there for a few days. Interestingly, when we came back a couple of hours later, an adult Bald Eagle was perched in the tree, and the nest was empty.  We heard a Marsh Wren and someone saw a Bewick’s Wren.  Lots of beautiful blossoms on the trees and bushes, and the moss on the huge twisted tree branches was amazingly eerie as it always is in this park.

We crossed the road into Hi-Knoll Park (which I later learned is actually in Surrey) and the Fawn Lilies were there as we had hoped.  Both the White and rarer Pink were in fine bloom, as were several other wildflower species that we have come here to see, Trilliums (White and Pink, which I learned is a mature/old white Trillium) and Bleeding Hearts.  Lots of evidence of Pileated Woodpeckers here and we saw Northern Flickers.  A bird singing sounded like a Swainson’s Thrush, but we weren’t sure.  Despite the rain, the walk through this “almost” old growth grove is very pleasant.

When we turned down the hill at the Hydro Tower, Kathryn and Debbi saw Bushtits, apparently uninteresting (Ho-Hum) to most others.  Although we saw several more Hummingbirds, we could not coax any warblers to appear.  Roger led us back across the road on a new, to us, trail, which was interesting with many “planted” species of trees and bushes and their colourful blossoms (Quince, Cherry, etc.).  This was the Skelton Farm before the Anglican Church, then Surrey Parks, took over the property in the 2000’s.

On the return walk back to the vehicles, Roger led us on a couple of errant side trips.  We went to the area near the Goose/Eagle Nest tree where Richmond Brian scared off the Common Snipe so only he saw it.  Then Roger led us through the ”Homeless Woods”, vainly in search of the Barred Owls we had seen here earlier years.  Thankfully, the homeless garbage and the Tarp in the Tree provided conversation tidbits arousing wry smiles on our soaked faces.  According to Brian’s eBird List we had 40 species today.

We got back to the vehicles around 11:30 am and knew it was time to hit Samz Pub for lunch, where we (11) were again welcomed by John Gordon’s daughter, Kara?  I had the Steak Sandwich with Salad and Fries, washed down with Granville Island Honey Lager; scrumptious.  It was still pouring rain when we left the pub after 1:00 pm, but it was another delightful DNCB outing.

We 23 were:  the four South Surrey Lovebirds, Colin & Stephanie, Wazza & Lynn, “lost Sailor” Langley Ralph & newbie Wanda, Photogs David & Noreen with Mike B2 & Ladner Jack Mac, patient Kathryn & Mom Debbi, Mike B drove Organizer Terry C, PB Lorna and returnee Gerhard, Langley experts Gareth P & Joanne R, our eBirder Richmond Brian, sisters Pat & Maureen, Roaming Roger and me.

Next Wednesday, April 17, we will leave Petra’s at 7:30 am for Queen Elizabeth Park in Vancouver.  We expect to meet others around 8:15 am at the Golf Course office near the parking lot by the tennis courts.

Note also that this Sunday, April 14 are two events with Delta Nats participation where you too may want to participate.  Ladner Jack MacDonald will be leading the Birds in Focus Photography Workshop at Cammidge House, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm and, we will have our Nats Display and a Nature Walk at Delta’s annual Fish Release at Watershed Park in North Delta, 11:30 to 2:30 pm.

For more info on these events, our outings, and earlier reports and photos, see our website.  As always, your comments are welcome, and let me know if this weekly drivel irks you and you want off my email list.  Cheers: Tom

Tom Bearss, President, Delta Naturalists Society

eBird Checklist Summary for: Apr 10, 2019 at 7:00 AM to Apr 10, 2019 at 11:00 PM
Number of Checklists: 1
Number of Taxa: 39
Checklists included in this summary:
(1): Langley–Brydon Lagoon
Date: Apr 10, 2019 at 8:15 AM

30 Canada Goose — (1)
2 Northern Shoveler — (1)
60 Mallard — (1)
1 Green-winged Teal — (1)
5 Ring-necked Duck — (1)
2 Bufflehead — (1)
3 Eurasian Collared-Dove — (1)
3 Anna’s Hummingbird — (1)
2 Rufous Hummingbird — (1)
1 American Coot (Red-shielded) — (1)
1 Wilson’s Snipe — (1)
2 Glaucous-winged Gull — (1)
2 Double-crested Cormorant — (1)
1 Great Blue Heron (Blue form) — (1)
1 Bald Eagle — (1)
1 Belted Kingfisher — (1)
1 Pileated Woodpecker — (1)
2 Northern Flicker — (1)
12 Northwestern Crow — (1)
4 Northern Rough-winged Swallow — (1)
60 Tree Swallow — (1)
2 Violet-green Swallow — (1)
2 Barn Swallow — (1)
1 Cliff Swallow — (1)
5 Black-capped Chickadee — (1)
2 Bushtit — (1)
1 Red-breasted Nuthatch — (1)
1 Brown Creeper — (1)
1 Marsh Wren — (1)
1 Bewick’s Wren — (1)
6 American Robin — (1)
2 Purple Finch — (1)
5 American Goldfinch — (1)
4 White-crowned Sparrow — (1)
3 Golden-crowned Sparrow — (1)
6 Song Sparrow — (1)
2 Spotted Towhee — (1)
24 Red-winged Blackbird — (1)
2 House Sparrow — (1)
+ European Starlings>/p>

Posted in *DNCB, Bald Eagle, Brydon Lagoon, Cliff Swallow, Hi-Knoll Park, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Pileated Woodpecker, Purple Finch, Wilson's Snipe | Leave a comment