An overcast and cold Monday morning with eight avid birders showing up at Petra’s: Anne, Lorna, Eleanor, Hans, Mike, Roger, and Marg and Rick recently back in town after an amazing trip to Costa Rica. Heading out to Jerico Beach we met Mary and Bill on our arrival in the east parking lot. Hardly out of the vehicles, Anne spotted a Downy Woodpecker and, a day’s highlight, a Red-breasted Sapsucker. A single Ring-billed Gull was on the grass. The main pond offered up some good views of Golden-crowned Kinglets, Song Sparrows, Mallards, and American Wigeon.
Along the south trail we found more Golden-crowns and some Ruby-crowned Kinglets as well as Black-capped Chickadees. Always alert, “Bird-alert Lorna” sighted an adult male Anna’s Hummingbird on a birch tree and we had good looks at it with the telescopes. Other birds seen were Red-winged Blackbirds, Gold and House Finches, a Fox Sparrow, and Northern Flickers. Looking out on English Bay provided very few species… a single Greater Scaup, a male and female Bufflehead, a Canada Goose, and a Red-breasted Merganser. Check out the photos at https://picasaweb.google.com/dncbirding.
Having heard that a Costa’s Hummingbird was to be seen at 32nd and Camosun we decided to give it a try, but to no avail. A house was being demolished next to the home where the feeders were and it seemed pointless to sit and wait under those circumstances. It was a quiet but interesting morning in a new location for the year and one worth a second look later in the spring.
A suggestion for a future trip, perhaps the week after next, would be a ferry ride through the Gulf Islands. The ferry leaves Tsawwassen at 10:10 and hits Galiano, Mayne, and Pender Islands before arriving at Saltspring (free for the few of us seniors) at 1:10. $2.50 takes us from Long Harbour to Ganges where we would have from 1:25 to 3:10 to eat, browse, look at birds in the bay and then get the shuttle to Fulford Harbour to connect with the 3:50 ferry to Swartz Bay. Arriving in Swartz Bay at 4:25 gives us just enough time to get the 5:00 ferry back to Tsawwassen. Lots of time to see sea birds and enjoy the scenery. The only other cost would be the $11.00 for parking at the First Nations lot which provides a free shuttle to the ferry terminal. The week after next, or later, would be better as our Iconic Leader (that would be Tom) should be able to join us and it would give us more time to plan.
Roger Meyer, Undersecretary to Tom Bearss, Absentee President of the Delta Naturalists