April 20 2015 Iona Regional Park Richmond BC Sunny 17cThe alarm went off at 5 am and again thirty minutes later. The plan was to drive to Iona Regional Park to look for a Lapland Longspur that had been seen the day before. I had only ever photographed them in the Autumn so I was looking forward to seeing one in full breeding plumage.
Because I had slept in the sun was already up when I arrived. A cold wind was blowing for the north-west, I wished I had brought gloves. I made my way out to where the bird had last been seen the evening before at around the 150 marker. Numbered markers run the length of the 4km (2.5mile) jetty. It is very popular with walkers and cyclists, especially on the weekends.
|A male Lapland Longspur seems unperturbed by a passing walker.|
|Lapland Longspur (Calcarius lapponicus)|
I continued to photograph until a few more people passed and flushed the bird. When I relocated the first bird, a female suddenly flew in and joined the male. They continued to feed on seeds before the foot traffic became distracting, by mid-morning it was getting warm, the light harsh and time for brunch.
|The female longspur holds a seed between its beak.|