Sunday, March 22, 2009


It was a nice day today so thought I would go do some work in the garden,,, But I couldn't find my snowshoes.
-12c this morning, but the Red-winged Blackbirds are calling, the Pine Grosbeaks are singing, a Piliated Woodpecker was calling and a pair of Blackbilled Magpies are busy building a nest near our garden spot. Our feeders are very busy with Common Redpolls and Pine Grosbeaks, and a few Evening Grosbeaks along with the Black-capped Chickadees and Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Spring, Yeah right

Woke up this morning to 15cm/5inches of new snow and got to plow snow all morning. As i was just finished I heard the call of a Red-winged Blackbird, my first of the year. There were 2 high in a spruce tree near our house. This is just about 1 week later than the average time for returning here.
We added up all the snowfalls i have recorded this year and it totals 190cm which is very close to 6 feet of snow. I missed recording many snowfalls due to being out of town or just plain forgetting. so I am sure we are over 2 meters of snow this year.
On a trip to Prince George today we saw many Bald Eagles Ravens and Crows on the move but we are at least a couple of weeks from seeing any other spring birds

Friday, March 20, 2009

Odd Pine Grosbeak

took some picture of an odd looking Pine Grosbeak that has been coming to the feeders. It is covered with white splotches. There is also one that is very pale with a white patch on the throat.
We had a Black-capped Chickadee with a white tail a couple of years ago so there seems to be a trend here.
The weather has turned a lot milder in the last week with +9 on Wednesday and +7 on Thursday, much nicer than the sub -30 of the first 2 weeks of the month. I have read that this has been good for the Mountain pine Beetle problem with a 90 to 95% mortality rate in Alberta.
Too late for B.C. where 85% of the pine trees are dead, good for the woodpeckers but not so good for the local economy.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

-36.8 celcius

We woke up to -36.8 temp this morning, is this March or January. Due to the cold temp my feeders have been very busy. Common Repolds, Blackcapped Chickadees, Evening Grosbeaks, Pine Grosbeaks BlackbilledMagpies and Downie and Hairy Woodpeckers.
There is supposed to be a break in the weather later in the week, with a little rain and snow but much milder temps. I can't wait for our upcoming trip to Vancouver and Seattle to get a little taste of spring and some birding with Bro-inlaw Reg in the good birding areas around Seattle and Redmond Washington.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Common Redpolls

Last winter we didn't have any redpolls at our feeders and very few were found around the area. This trend continued for most of this winter until the second week in January when we had a single one show up. This expanded to 8 after a week and when we returned from Kelowna there were about 20.
The photo is of a Northern Pygmy-owl that flew into our window and I found it on the ground stunned. I put into our spruce tree and after about 1/2 hour it flew away

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Scout Island Nature Center

Stopped in Williams Lake on our way home from Kelowna. Our motel overlooked Scout Island, a place of many fond memories. From the time my Daughter Brandi started walking until she started school we spent our mornings walking around "Scoot Island" as she called it. We would look at the birds, we would walk the trails and she would collect small rocks and interesting sticks which we would have to bring home. She would always look for her favorite bird, the Purple Finch but if she couldn't see one that was ok because she could look in the field guide and find it long before she could read.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Maude Roxby

Walked around maude Roxby Bird Sanctuary in Kelowna today. Nothing spectacular but did see a few firsts for the year. There were a couple of Northern Flickers, some American Robins, Ring-billed Gulls, Mew Gulls and a lone Mourning Dove. It was a cold snowy morning and it was not hard to convince myself that it was too miserable to spend time birding.