Saturday, 1 May 2010

A Cedar sites Saturday

A latish start today, after dropping Jenny at work, and I headed down to Holden Creek. I met Mike Ashbee as I arrived, he was just coming away. He reported that it was bit on the quiet side, but he'd at least had 4 fly-by dowitchers and an overhead osprey to brighten up the morning.
I had no such luck, and despite a pretty thorough search couldn't add anything of note to the birds that Mike had seen.
Least sandpiper numbers were down, probably fewer than 40 birds present, but I counted 5 western sandpipers (pic). Other than 4 killdeer (and the 3 growing chicks), that was it for waders. Even the teal number were reduced.
All the hirundines were in the 'hood, at one time they all got a little disturbed by a passing sharp-shinned hawk.
4 white-fronted geese remain with the Canadas in the field.
As I came away, I met Ralph Hocken, who was hoping to get some shots, particularly of the mud-gathering cliff swallows.

I headed round for a quick check at the Nanaimo River estuary, but it was painfully bereft of notable avian activity... so, I elected for a brief look at Quennell Lake. Unfortunately, that too was on the quiet side with no wildfowl present, bar a few Canada geese. A lovely male American kestrel showed brilliantly, and attracted a violent response from the local Brewer's blackbirds!

Early evening, Jenny and I took a walk along the Cable Bay Trail. Birds here included numerous rufous hummingbirds, 3 red-breasted sapsucker, 3 hermit thrush, and the usual forest denizens. Identified Pacific-slope flycatcher on call - thanks to Rich Mooney's empidonax vocalisations masterclass...!


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