Almost 50 participants enjoyed a beautiful sunny walk this morning (October 16) in Boundary Bay Regional Park (BBRP). It was a Birds on the Bay event, with Nature Vancouver also joining up with the host Delta Naturalists. We started at historic Cammidge House and walked to the pond at Centennial Beach where one Northern Shoveler was with the Mallards and American Wigeon. At the beach, the tide was way out, but a few Greater Yellowlegs were fairly close among the Gulls (Glaucous-winged, Ring-billed and Mew). A couple of Bald Eagles were near the thousands of ducks lining the horizon in the distance. These “dabblers” were mostly Wigeon, Mallards, Northern Pintail, Green-winged Teal and a few Gadwall.
We took the inland trail and some of our huge queue of birders saw the following species: Sparrows (Fox, Song, White- and Golden-crowned, probably Savannah, and a Lincoln’s), Woodpeckers (Downy and Northern Flickers), Marsh and Bewick’s Wrens, Red-winged and Brewer’s Blackbirds, Finches (House, American Gold and Purple – thanks Cathy), one late Barn Swallow, and a Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Several always-entertaining Northern Harriers glided by us, occasionally posing for photos. Other raptors seen included: Red-tailed Hawks, a Peregrine Falcon and a Cooper’s Hawk up-close-and-personal. For some of us “candy-birders” it was exciting to see a small flock of Western Meadowlarks. An unusual flock of Double-crested Cormorants gave us a fly-over.
From the lookout at 12th Avenue, the gulls and ducks were a bit closer as the tide was coming in. Nothing new identified, but Cathy, Segal and I saw a Thayer’s Gull, at least one Eurasian Wigeon and some Dowitchers there after lunch. We saw a few Killdeer which were the only other Shorebirds seen on the day. We saw lots of other common species (e.g. Robins, Spotted Towhees, Juncos, Canada Geese, Chickadees, GBH’s, etc.), too many to mention them all. We raced back to Cammidge House at 11:30 a.m. to savour the coffee and home-made pastries prepared by the Delta Nats ladies (thanks Dorothy, Jennifer, Mary and Sandra).
Thanks also to Kelly and Nellie for organizing the Nature Vancouver folk ,and especially to my Guru Anne Murray for her guidance. The outing was awesome, but a bit too rushed and short for some of us. I hope/trust that participants got a taste of, and will return to this naturalists’ paradise, the IBA of Delta’s BBRP. I have received some photos of today’s outing, including the Group Shot. I will send them to anyone on request.
Cheers: Tom Bearss