Sunday, March 24, 2019

RBA: 6 PARAKEET AUKLETS off Tofino - March 24th

On March 24-2019 during a pelagic out of Tofino on the "Miss B Haven" with Ocean Outfitters; Joachim Bertrands photographed some distant alcids. After the pelagic, during photo review, he saw that he had indeed photographed 6 Parakeet Auklets. He was the sole observer of these birds during the trip.

More details to come.

This is the 44th record for the province of BC.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

RBA: SHORT-TAILED ALBATROSS off Tofino - March 17th

At 11 am on March 17-2019, Douglas Martin spotted an immature Short-tailed Albatross during a pelagic with Ocean Outfitters on the “Miss B. Haven”, out of Tofino. All 12 on board were able to see and photograph the bird well, before it flew off after 15 minutes. The bird was banded on its right leg. 15 Laysan Albatrosses were also seen during this pelagic. This is the second year in a row that a Short-tailed Albatross was seen off a pelagic in BC; as 3 were seen on a similar trip on March 24th-2018.

Map to exact location bird was seen HERE.

This is the 46th reported record for the province of BC (the actual number is obviously higher than what is reported by birders).

Immature Short-tailed Albatross off Tofino - Photo: Ilya Povalyaev
Short-tailed Albatross off Tofino - Photo: Cathy Reader

Thursday, March 14, 2019

RBA: FERRUGINOUS HAWK in Kelowna - March 8 (Late Report)

At 2pm on March 8-2019, Ryan Tomlinson saw an adult light morph Ferruginous Hawk flying over Maquinna Rd near Hall Rd in Kelowna. Ryan does not own a camera but has seen many Ferruginous Hawks and described a hawk that was larger than a Red-tailed Hawk with a distinctive hefty build and long tapered wings that were held in a slight dihedral. He said the under-wings were very pale with no patagial bar.  He noted the wing linings mottled with dark and rufous and dark 'commas' on each wing out towards the base of the primaries. He said the flight feathers were white with tiny dark tips to the primaries. He noted that the body was very white except for the presence of dark leggings. Below the tail was pale and from above he noticed a golden hue. He also said the bird had a pale head with a dark line extending back from behind the eye. He watched the bird for 4 mins before it flew off to the NW.

Map to where he saw the bird HERE

Saturday, February 9, 2019

RBA: BROWN THRASHER in Nelson - Jan 6-Feb 8th

A Brown Thrasher was seen briefly by Stuart McDonald on January 6-2019 but he was unsure what it was. On Feb 6-2019 the bird was photographed at his home on Johnstone Rd and it was able to be identified to species.

The bird continued in the same location on Feb 8th.

The home is not open to the public.

Brown Thrasher in Nelson - Photo: Stuart McDonald

This is the 41st record for the province of BC.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

RBA: TUFTED DUCK in Victoria - Jan 19-March 24th

On January 19th, 2019, Jacques Sirois found a male Tufted Duck at Portage Inlet in Saanich. The bird was with a flock of about 250 scaup at the Craigflower Creek Estuary. It was only identified on January 28th.

The bird was found on February 1st and is still among the scaup flock in Portage Inlet. The crest of this bird is not very distinct and using features like the black back and more prominent pale, subterminal band on the bill should be used to facilitate identification. Viewing is perhaps best accomplished from the St. Giles Greenspace park at the end of Chancellor Ave. Parking is limited, so please remember to be respectful to residents and do not block roadways.

Map to one viewing location HERE

The bird was last seen on March 24th in Portage Inlet.

Male Tufted Duck in Saanich - Photo: Jacques Sirois

Saturday, January 19, 2019

RBA: DUSKY THRUSH in Nanaimo - Jan 19-Feb 15th

At approximately 4:00pm on January 19th, 2019, David Baird and Bryan Vroom found a Dusky Thrush near the Nanaimo River Estuary in Nanaimo. The bird was photographed along Gordon Road near the Holden Creek entrance to the estuary.

On January 20th the bird was relocated in the same area, feeding in the grassy fields on the north side of Gordon Road. It was seen on Jan 23rd at this location but was not seen on January 24th or 25th despite many observers looking.

***On Feb 10th-2019 the Dusky Thrush was relocated HERE near the holly tree near 1266 Gordon Rd in Nanaimo by Iwan llewellyn. Multiple observers were able to view the bird**

The bird continued in the same location on Feb 11th. The food source seems to be depleted at this location as of Feb 13th.

****On Feb 12th, the Dusky Thrush was located at a new close by spot HERE on Maughan Rd. It’s with American Robins and perching in hawthorn trees that are visible if you stand at the gate (at the map pin) and look east.****

The bird was last seen at the same location on Maughan Rd on Feb 15th. Despite multiple observers looking he has not been relocated on Feb 16th or 17th.

Please be respectful of private property and do not block traffic when parking and viewing it from the road.

This is the third record for the province of BC.

Dusky Thrush in Nanaimo - Photo: Jeremy Gatten
Dusky Thrush in Nanaimo - Photo: David Baird

Sunday, December 16, 2018

RBA: FIELDFARE aim Salmon Arm - Dec 16/18-Feb 6/19

At 11:30 am on Dec 16-2018 during a Christmas Bird Count, Roger and Nan Beardmore with Peter and Sharon Lawless found a Fieldfare (ABA Code 4), 10 km south of Salmon Arm. The bird was eating Mountain Ash berries in a flock of American Robins along the road at the corner of Krick Rd and Kernaghan Rd. Roger was able to obtain stunning photos of the bird. They watched the bird for 10 mins and left it there.

Map to location HERE

Berries have disappeared from the original location at corner of Krick and Kernaghan as of Jan 27. The Fieldfare has been seen recently in a slightly different location. Next to house #80 on Kernaghan Road is a small snowy track up a hill. Go about 50 meters up this hill and look into the backyard of house #80 to see a mountain ash that still has some berries. 

There have been a few days when the Fieldfare has been absent from the location (despite multiple observers looking) and they include Dec 24, 25, Jan 5, 9, 10, 25, and 26th.

**The bird was last seen in the same location on Feb 6th but was not relocated on Feb 7th.**

*Please be considerate of private property in the area, do not trespass and when parking do not block driveways.*

This is the second record for the province of BC.

A news article on the Fieldfare can be found HERE

Stunning photos of a Fieldfare (ABA Code 4) in Salmon Arm - Photos: Roger Beardmore

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

RBA: BLACK-HEADED GULL in Victoria - Nov 20th

At 8:45 am on November 20-2018 Geoffrey Newell found and photographed a winter plumaged adult Black-headed Gull. The bird was flying alone and was heading NE about 400 metres offshore past McMicking Point in Oak Bay. He had excellent scope views of the bird as it flew past.

McMicking Point is located at the end of Radcliff Lane HERE

The bird has not been relocated since the initial sighting.

This is the 27th record for the province of BC.

Adult Black-headed Gull in Victoria - Photo: Geoffrey Newell

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

RBA: LITTLE GULL in Victoria - Oct 31-Nov 9th

At 7:15am on November 7-2018, Geoffrey Newell found an adult Little Gull at Cattle Point. The bird was flying around with Bonaparte's and Mew Gulls, less than 200 metres offshore. It was last seen heading NE towards Ten Mile Point. A photograph was obtained but the bird has not been relocated since 7:15am. Map to Cattle Point HERE

Upon this news Gordon Hart reviewed his photographs and found he had actually photographed the Little Gull at 2pm on Oct 31-2018 at the same location.

On Nov 8th-2018, the Little Gull was relocated by Cathy Reader at 10:40 am flying around Cadboro Bay. She viewed it off the end of Tudor Ave. It was flying around with Bonaparte's Gulls. It continued throughout the day.

The bird continues at Cadboro Bay as of Nov 9th but was not relocated on Nov 10th despite multiple observers looking.

You can view the Little Gull from these locations: HERE (the end of Cadboro Bay View Rdand HERE (the end of Tudor Ave).

This is the 99th record for the province of BC.

Adult Little Gull in Victoria - Photos: Gordon Hart

RBA: "PIED" WHITE WAGTAIL in Kimberley - July 20-27th (late report)

Carol Olson found a White Wagtail in her yard on Warren Avenue in Kimberley on July 20th-2018. The bird appears to be a Pied Wagtail of the Motacilla alba yarrellii subspecies. 

Adult male leucopsis is ruled out because it would have a pure white wing panel, whereas the yarrellii subspecies have thin dark centres to the greater coverts. Also yarrellii have grey flanks as the bird photographed, while leucopsis do not. Lugens is ruled out due to the lack of the black eyeline.

The bird stayed in her yard for 7 days before it departed. 

This is the first record of this subspecies for BC.

This is the 14th record of White Wagtail for the province of BC.

White Wagtail (M. a. yarrellii) in Kimberley - Photo: Carol Olson