Sunday, 5 December 2010

Ducks and geese and swans, oh my!

Didn't really get any time to do any serious birding today, but have binoculars, will travel...

Jenny and I walked down to Jack Point, enjoying the relative warmth and bright skies. We saw good numbers of waterbirds along the way including horned grebe, common loon, both goldeneye species, bufflehead, greater scaup, white-winged scoter and so on.
The woodland was alive with dark-eyed juncos, chestnut-backed chickadees and golden-crowned kinglets. We also came across Bewick's and Pacific wrens, and a couple of ruby-crowned kinglets.  
A single dunlin was roosting on the rocks near the Duke Point ferry terminal.

It was late afternoon by the time we came away and we made a small detour to check Quennell Lake. There were fewer swans than were here yesterday when we arrived, but small parties arrived from the south intermittently. After yesterday's wigeon-fest, I was surprised not to see a single bird. In fact, other than 8 shoveler and a ring-necked duck the only ducks present on the flooded fields were hundreds of mallard.
On the lake proper, I couldn't see the ruddy duck - just lots of common and hooded mergansers.
A single juv greater white-fronted goose was among the Canadas feeding in the fields (pictured). You can make out the beginnings of its white blaze at the base of the bill, though it still retains much of its black nail.
A lone cackling goose arrived in a large flock of Canada geese, again coming in from wherever they'd been feeding to the south.

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