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Saturday, March 9, 2013

A Mixed Bag and a 'Lifer' to Boot!


9.00 Leave home after leisurely breakfast


Mar 8th, 2013 Burnaby Mountain. Blue skies and sunny.


9.30 A.M.
A few feet above me a flock of Pine Grosbeaks are gorging themselves. I can't believe I've found them on my first try. It wasn't a question of finding the quarry myself as much as locating another photographer who had already found the birds! I suppose that's just another facet of the 'Total Birding' experience. anyway I digress....I best shut up and just take pictures!

Female Pine Grosbeak (Pinicola enucleator)
The Pine Grosbeak is a beautiful bird, even though the more brilliant male was missing from the flock  the females with their yellow-olive heads were stunning. I spent an hour with them.

Pine Grosbeak feeding on cherry buds.


The flock spent a good hour eating the tender cherry buds, disregarding some very loud groups of tourists passing directly underneath them. The flock kept on feasting, eventually retreating into some higher branches andout of range, most probably to take a rest from eating.. or to take a break from us humans!



11.30 A.M.  Deas Island Regional Park Sunny

Deas Island would seem to be the perfect resting place to go bird watching. The Fraser River skirts one side of the park, another sheltered body of water inside the park is used by the local rowing club offers shelter to ducks, herons and kingfishers. High above gulls and bald eagles circle in the air. A very vocal Winter wren makes checks me out, coming within inches of my shoulder, high above a flock of Yellow-rumped warblers search for insects and scores of Black-capped chickadees and Ruby-crowned kinglets flit from tree to tree.
The rattle of a kingfisher draws my attention away. There are so many branches obscuring the bird but eventually I find a small opening to shoot through. The aperture is set at F4, later I am surprised by the clarity of the files despite all the branches in the way.

Belted-kingfisher (Mecaceryle torquata

2.00 P.M. Ladner Trunk Rd.72nd Ave
Having found nothing of note at the base of 72nd Ave I decided to make my way home. As I reached Ladner Trunk Rd I spot a Red-tailed hawk perched up on a snag. I managed one static shot before it took off and I 'lucked out' with this flight shot.
Red-tailed  hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)
4.00 Arrive Back Home after yet another wonderful days birding in the Lower Mainland.

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