Sunday, 14 February 2010

Saltspring Spring

As correctly predicted by those, doubtless bearded, boffins at the Canadian equivalent of the Met Office, today was glorious. It was warm and sunny and still. Jenny and I headed out for a trundle around Saltspring Island.
We had a rather lovely day even if the birding was a bit on the dull side. A few bits and pieces were singing away, some of which I was able to identify. Problem is, I've not been here long enough to have learnt a lot of Canadian birds' songs, but I'm hoping that the coming spring will be something of an education. Listening to the Stokes CDs is great, but out of context it's hard to commit any but the most simple songs to memory. Having visited this part of the world a couple of times in the past, during the spring and early summer, I've got a bit of a grasp of some of the commoner ones but I've got a loooong way to go before I can step out into the field with anything like confidence. That said, even back in Britain I had iritatingly bad aural retention where birds were concerned. Funny, seeing as I can identify any Clash song from the first 2 notes...
Anyhoo - highlights from out Saltspring visit included a fine breeding plumaged pigeon guillemot and good numbers of Barrow's and common goldeneyes, surf scoters, American wigeons, horned grebes and frankly, not much else to get excited about.
Seeing as it's Valentine's Day I've stuck a pic of Jen and myself lurking around on a wee jetty at Fernwood Point.


  1. You won't like this joke Jon, but I can't resist it.... surely clash songs only HAVE 2 notes! Boom boom!
    Talking of music, isn't Teardrop by Massive Attack beautiful!
    And talking of dull birding, why not pretend you are in a foreign country?
    I love the way Adrian calls his wife "Assistant Clerk of Works" in his blog. I think I shall stop calling mine Mrs Ray and start up with "The Librarian." I wonder if he has noticed that her work acronym would be A Cow ?
    Well, in a few short sentences I have managed to upset some of my few friends!
    Lighten up lads, it's all in jest you know.
    What are words worth?

  2. Tut tut Ray, thought you'd steer clear of such musical stereotyping... I rather think you'd like Sandanista (The Clash's triple album) actually! And, Rolling Stone magazine did vote London Calling the best album of the 1980s (even though it came out in the 70s). Anyway, I digress.
    Yes, Teardrop IS beautiful. I hope that you have voted on the yankee spadger pic - I'll be posting the answer, and a new photo tomorrow. That, of course, means MY tomorrow, which is 8 hours behind yours.
    Thanks for your idea of thinking I'm in a foreign country - I'll try Brazil.. oh, it doesn't quite work like that does it?

  3. Yes, I have voted, basically on the AJP Taylor principle of taking the opposite stance to everyone else. I was a bit miffed there was no tickbox for White Stork or american Nighthawk.
    Anyway, you can't judge an album by what other people think of it... especially so-called soi-disant experts!!
    Hey, today I have managed to prove that Penguins and Hawfinches are not birds! That's what I call true iconoclasm .
    It will save me a lot of time trying to track down a blasted Hawfinch as well. Green decision-making or what?
    Best wishes from Ray. Any snow yet, what with the winter Olympics being up your way?

  4. Jon!

    You are Jenny look so happy in this pic! How are you doing? Missing you loads here : (
    Hope you're having the time of your life.

    Lozza Lazulu xxx

  5. A 'wee jetty' my word they think of everything over there.

  6. There is a 'wee' jetty in Morecambe too, you know.. though I think it's only the night fishermen who know that.