Monday Feb3 2014
Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary/Ladner River Rd, 64th Ave and 72nd Ave.As promised there was not a cloud in the sky Monday morning which meant below average daytime temperatures of just above freezing, perfect for spending a day outside.
The day began with a check on the Prairie Falcon which may have moved on as a Pergrine Falcon was now occupying the favoured perch. A quick drive along River Road turned up the Red-tailed Hawk with the big beak syndrome but not much else.
A walk around Reifel didn't produce too much photographically but I had a number of interesting conversations and had a wonderful packed lunch while overlooking the marsh and Fraser Delta. As I was leaving a Bald Eagle flew over head offering me the chance to a head-on shot.
|Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)|
Moving on to 64th Ave two long-eared owls slept in a bush while being very patient with all the passersby including dogs and horses. There were only a few Dark-eyed Juncos where sometimes eight or nine species could be counted on a good day.
As 72nd Ave is on my way home I thought I might drop in and wait for the Short-eared Owls to begin their hunting. On my arrival at about 2.30 p.m the Northern Harriers were already hunting, a few were sparring with Bald Eagles or squabbling among themselves over Townsend's Voles, a favourite prey in the fields and foreshore.
A number of Bald Eagles were circling above the dyke when suddenly an immature bird landed right in front of me.
|Immature Bald Eagle|
|Mixed flocks of duck disturbed by eagles.|
As the sun began to fade and the 'sweet light' bathed the fields the Short-eared Owls began the hunt.
|Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus)|