Sunday, February 16, 2014

Feb 14-March 7: Tufted Duck at Iona Island (Richmond)

This male Tufted Duck was discovered by Sunny Zhai on Valentine's Day, in one of the more romantic locales in Vancouver: The Iona Sewage Lagoons. It is still present, using both the inner (gated) and outer (near washrooms) ponds as of March 14. [Photo: Michelle Lamberson]
*Coincidentally another male Tufted Duck was found on the same day (Feb 14) on Bullock Lake, Saltspring Island, by Karen Ferguson. Bird is still present as of Feb 18 but this location is not accessible to the public.*

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Feb 9-11: KING EIDER (Little Qualicum River Estuary)

Feb 9--This morning after checking out the mockingbird along Surfside Drive in Qualicum Beach, Russell Cannings spotted a first-winter male KING EIDER feeding on clams among a large flock of Black Scoters. It was still present as of 11am, Sunday. Take Kinkade Rd north off the Old Island Hwy west of downtown Qualicum Beach, follow this onto McFeely Dr then make a left on Surfside and park at the end (this is the Little Qualicum River Estuary). Walk down to the beach and scope through the scoters. At times the eider spent a lot of time underwater so be patient while scanning if it is not immediately visible. In addition to the creamy chest, this bird has white rear-flank patches (not visible in this photograph) which also help to distinguish it from other seaducks in the area.

This bird has not been seen since February 11th
king eider . . .
First-winter male King Eider among a group of scoters on February 9 (Photo: Sher Falls)
*If anyone manages better photos, please send them to and I'd be happy to put them up on the alert!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Feb 7-21: Northern Mockingbird

Well it's been a while but there's a new rare bird out there! Not a mind-blower but a nice one indeed to warm up what has been a very chilly week for the entire province. On Feb 7 Donna and Guy Monty found a NORTHERN MOCKINGBIRD along Surfside Drive near the Little Qualicum River Estuary (NW of Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island).
Photo: Russell Cannings (Feb 9)
Bird is continuing as of at least Feb 21. It it seems to favour the holly bush near the junction of McFeely and Surfside Drive.