Archive for January, 2013

Hiking around: The Port Alberni Christmas Bird Count

LJW2_1459Dave and I used our cross-country skills and knowledge of the local trails to participate in the annual Christmas Bird Count this year, this past December 30th. This was the 113th annual Christmas Bird Count in North America, and the 25th year that it has taken place in Port Alberni.

The way it works is that each location (usually a town) has a circle with a 15 km radius drawn around it: this is the area in which the count takes place. Someone needs to organize the count, to make sure that different groups don’t go to the same places (so the same birds do not get counted twice).

LJW2_1492Dave had taken me out to the Somass Bird Sanctuary, an estuary with lots of marshland, grassland, bush, forest, and open water, at the top of Alberni Inlet (straight across from town) the day before the count. He’s been saying for over a year he wanted to take me there – I’m glad he finally did! We saw so many species there – there is a raised boardwalk over the marsh, which makes for great viewing. A highlight was a short-eared owl, circling low over us, hunting (we kept a close eye on little Tank!). Read the rest of this entry »

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