Monday, 18 April 2011

All At Sea

After managing to drag myself out of bed early this morning I headed out to Clover Point, in an effort to beat the crowds. It was delightfully quiet when I arrived and I spent some time checking the rocks for shorebirds and scanning the water for, well, waterbirds.

Just 5 black turnstone and a lone black oystercatcher were sifting through the seaweed, while harlequin ducks dabbled around the edges. Offshore, there were the usual pigeon guillemots and rhinoceros auklets, plus a couple of common murre.
A breeding plumage Pacific loon was preening close to shore and several surf scoter were diving in the calm waters. A pair of brant flew by and I added barn swallow to my year list.
I headed north along the cliff top path and in some shrubby areas I heard and saw my first orange-crowned warbler of the spring (pictured).

All along here there were also numerous Anna's hummingbirds (male pictured), plus Bewick's wrens, spotted towhees, song sparrows and the like.
It was getting towards 9am now and the place was getting a bit heavy on the dog front, so I took off, stopping at Government House on my way.

The first bird I saw was a cracking Cooper's hawk sat out in full view, in the bright sunshine. Sadly it didn't stay still long enough for a snap. I heard, then saw several pine siskin, but other than a couple of ruby-crowned kinglet and a fly-by tree swallow it was pretty much business as usual. Given the decent light and the fact that I had my scope with me, I got a pic of the Anna's hummingbird nest I'd found a few days ago, high up in a Garry Oak. Just as I was headed back to the car, a merlin zipped through.

Later in the day, once work and chores and other boring stuff had been dealt with, Jenny and I took a stroll around the block and came across a nice flock of c18 cedar waxwings along Joan Crescent.


  1. Thanks Dave!
    As always, just my pocket snapper held in front of my 'scope eyepiece - I often have to take several shots in order to end up with a half decent one... the results are often better than I expect them to be (thanks, in part, to my many years working with Photoshop!). Only problem is, I can never take flight shots, keeping the whole clumsy apparatus moving, and in focus, is an impossible feat!