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, 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, Orange-crowned Warblers, and Common Yellowthroats. Group members also heard and saw a Warbling Vireo, a Black-throated Gray Warbler, a Wilson’s Warbler, and saw a Red Breasted Sapsucker. 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. 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