Tuesday, April 17, 2018

RBA: GREAT-TAILED GRACKLE in Vancouver - March 11-April 19th

On March 11th-2018, Shelley Ide found a bird she did not recognize on the sidewalk of W. 4th Ave in Vancouver. At the time she had identified the bird as a female Boat-tailed Grackle. On the afternoon of April 17th-2018, Aaron Zacharias found the same bird in a vacant lot on W. 4th Ave between Alma St. and Highbury St. Aaron identified it as well as a female Boat-tailed Grackle. After Robert Lee relocated it this evening and provided a photo. I was able to help identify it to species and the bird is actually a female Great-tailed Grackle, which is a great bird nonetheless. Congrats to the finders. The bird has a limp but is doing ok it is eating and flying ok.

Map to exact location HERE

This is the 5th record for the province of BC and 1st record for Metro Vancouver.

The bird continues in the same location as of April 19th.

Female Great-tailed Grackle in Vancouver - Photos: Melissa Hafting
Female Great-tailed Grackle in Vancouver - Photo: Janice White

Thursday, March 29, 2018

RBA: PARAKEET AUKLET off Tofino - March 29th

On March 29, 2018 - a pelagic out of Tofino from The Whale Centre found a single Parakeet Auklet at an ocean depth of 515 ft in pelagic waters, offshore from Tofino. An exact GPS location of the bird was not taken. It sat on the water briefly before taking flight and disappearing out of sight.

The bird was found and photographed by Joachim Bertrands.

Parakeet Auklet off Tofino - Photos: Joachim Bertrands

This is the 43rd record for the province of BC.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

RBA: 3 SHORT-TAILED ALBATROSSES off Tofino - March 24th

At 9am on March 24, 2018 on a pelagic trip out of Tofino on Ocean Outfitter's "Miss B. Haven," 13 birders saw three juvenile Short-tailed Albatrosses, one of the birds was banded and after photo review a partial band number was visible. We sent in the band and the researchers said he was banded on April 24, 2017 as a chick at Tori Island, Hachijo, Japan. His full band number is 13D9932.

The first Short-tailed Albatross was spotted by Mike Toochin and all birds were found on Clayquot Canyon with 400 Black-footed Albatross behind a trawler.

The birds stayed with the boat in close proximity (as close as 10 feet away) and allowed for great photos. The birds were present for the full 5 hours the birders were at the canyon.

Exact GPS location of birds HERE

This is the 45th record for the province of BC.
(The actual number in BC is obviously higher than what is reported by birders)

Banded (R) Short-tailed Albatross off Tofino - Photo: Melissa Hafting
2 out of 3 Short-tailed Albatrosses off Tofino - Photo: Melissa Hafting
Short-tailed Albatross off Tofino - Photos: Melissa Hafting
Short-tailed Albatross off Tofino - Photo: Ilya Povalyaev

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

RBA: KING EIDER in Qualicum Beach - March 12-April 2nd

At 2:15pm on March 12, 2018, Neil Robins and John Purves found an adult male King Eider in breeding plumage. The bird was in a large raft of scoters near to Bluffs Drive in the Eaglecrest Area of Qualicum Beach. They viewed the bird for an hour by scope. They were unable to photograph the bird due to distance.

The bird was relocated by Guy Monty et al. on March 13th at the end of Whitmee Rd and is being viewed as of 6:30pm. A scope is required. From March 18th to 22nd, the eider was relocated further north at the Little Qualicum Estuary and could be viewed from the beach access at the east end of Surfside Dr. The bird was seen on March 23rd from the end of Buller Rd, which is just south of the previous location - a map of the location can be viewed HERE.

The bird was seen at the original location at the end of Whitmee Rd on March  26, 2018.

*On April 2nd the bird continued at the end of Seacrest Place in Qualicum Beach.*

This is the 37th record for the province of British Columbia.

King Eider in Qualicum Beach - Photo: Blair Dudeck

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

RBA: BROWN THRASHER in Elko - Jan 2-March 19th

On Jan 2-2018, Brad Eckersley first saw a Brown Thrasher visiting his property on Yarrow Rd. The bird was present for a month and a half but was not identified. On Feb 11-2018, Bob Livsey found the bird at Brad's feeder and identified it as a Brown Thrasher. It was only present at the feeder for about 6 seconds. It was seen again briefly on Feb 12th at the same location and was singing. Appearances have been too brief for any photo opportunities.

The bird can now be viewed from the public location of  Main St and Yarrow Ave. 

This is the 40th record for the province of BC.

This is the second Brown Thrasher in the province at the same time. The other bird is in Cranbrook and details can be found HERE.

The bird continues in the same location as of March 19th, 2018.

Monday, January 29, 2018

RBA: BROWN BOOBY in Victoria - Jan 29th-Feb 3rd

An apparent injured adult Brown Booby was found at 1pm on January 29/2018 at Ogden Point in Victoria. The bird was photographed by Ashley Olender who didn't realize what it was. June Elaine Pigeon found the bird at the same site later in the afternoon and noticed it was immobile and shivering and called the SPCA. The bird was then transported to SPCA's Wild ARC rehab facility.

A photo of the bird can be viewed HERE

Sadly, despite best efforts, this bird died on Feb 3rd at Wild Arc.

Thank you to Wild Arc and especially to June Pigeon for aiding this bird as best as they could.

You can read more about this sad story HERE.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

RBA: LESSER GOLDFINCH in Victoria - Dec 11/17-Jan 7/18

Update: This bird was first photographed by Susan Harper at her home on December 11/2017. However, at the time she didn't realize it was a Lesser Goldfinch.

At 11:50am on December 24-2017, while viewing  a previously reported Tennessee Warbler, Nathan Hentze found a female Lesser Goldfinch. The bird was feeding in the backyard of Susan Harper's home at 820 Rogers Court. However, the Lesser Goldfinch is best viewed by looking at the feeders in the backyard from Rogers Way. It was also seen directly across the street at 840 Rogers Way. The bird was viewed by multiple observers all afternoon and photographed.

Please do not trespass on home owner's property and be respectful of other residents in the area.

This is the 22nd record for the province of BC.
The bird has not been relocated since January 7th/2018, despite multiple observers looking.

Female Lesser Goldfinch in Victoria, Dec 24/17  - Photo: Gordon Hart
Female Lesser Goldfinch in Victoria, Dec 24/17 - Photo: Marie O'Shaughnessy

Monday, December 11, 2017

RBA: BROWN BOOBY off the West Coast of Vancouver Island - Dec 5th

Greg Petri had an adult Brown Booby land on his fishing vessel in pelagic waters, west of the Brooks Peninsula on December 5th-2017. The bird rode on the boat for quite some time before flying off to sea.

More details to come.

Brown Booby on the West Coast of Vancouver Island - Photo: Greg Petri

Saturday, December 9, 2017

RBA: BROWN THRASHER in Cranbrook - Dec 9/17-April 1/18

At 1:45 pm on Dec 9th-2017, Ryan Tomlinson found a Brown Thrasher in Joseph Creek. This location is directly across from Greg Ross and Katrin Powell's home; who have a Northern Cardinal visiting their yard since Nov 7th at 213 17th Ave N.

Map to location of bird HERE

At 2:45pm the bird was relocated in the same location by Chris Charlesworth and photographed.

The bird was not relocated on Dec 10th, despite multiple observers looking.

On December 26th, bird was relocated in Greg Ross's Yard at 213, 17th Ave N.

The bird was last seen at the above location on Dec 29th, 2017.

On Jan 1, 2018 Wendy Norris Roberts relocated the Brown Thrasher in her yard on 11th Ave S in Cranbrook.

The bird continues in the same location on 11th Ave S as of March 5, 2018. Please view the bird from the street only and do not trespass. Please be respectful of neighbors and private property. The address is withheld per request. Contact the RBA if you plan to go searching for this bird.

This is the 39th record for the province of BC.

The bird was seen in the yard of a private home on 13th Ave S on March 18, 2018.

*The bird continues in the same previous location of 11 Ave S as of April 1, 2018.  Contact the RBA for viewing access.*

This bird has not been seen since April 1, 2018.

Brown Thrasher in Cranbrook. Jan 31, 2018. Photo: Greg Ross

Brown Thrasher in Cranbrook. Feb 19, 2018. Photo: Wendy Norris Roberts

RBA: SUMMMER TANAGER in Vancouver - Dec 9/17-April 18th

At 8:25am on Dec 9th-2017, Wendy Kahle found an immature male Summer Tanager (red feathers appear on the bird's face and back) at her home near W 71st Ave in Vancouver. The bird has a bill deformity but is coming to her suet feeder on her patio in her backyard. The bird can be viewed from the public lane (Avery Ave), behind the property. It may also be possible to view it from the Arbutus greenway. Please do not trespass on her property or in the townhouse complex. Please be respectful of private property.

Map to where to stand to view her patio feeder HERE.

On April 18/18, the bird continues in the same location and is being viewed by multiple observers from Avery Ave and the Arbutus Greenway.

This is the 6th record for the province of BC and 1st for Metro Vancouver.

This bird has received a lot of media attention and you can read/watch news stories on it HERE, HEREHERE , HERE and HERE.

Imm. Male Summer Tanager with bill deformity in Vancouver - Photo: Liron Gertsman
Imm. Male Summer Tanager with bill deformity in Vancouver - Photo: Melissa Hafting