Wednesday, September 30, 2009

NMT - September 2009

September 2009
Species list: 7 Distance travelled: 85 kilometres

            The main areas covered were the Englishman River Estuary, Columbia Beach and a futile ride to the notch in Nanoose Bay. Last September, while doing a hawk watch on the notch, we had seen four Golden Eagles within five minutes of each other and a great variety of hawks and falcons. This year, there were twelve Turkey Vultures and a Red-tailed Hawk. I missed two days of riding this month as I headed out in my car to look for my nemesis shorebird at Holden Creek: Sharp-tailed Sandpiper. The Pectoral Sandpipers kept me on my toes, looking very similar to a Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, but alas no Asian vagrant for me.
            I did, however, add some new species at the Englishman River Estuary, so I can’t complain. A Pacific Golden-Plover was an absolute dream to see. Not only because I was on my bike, but also because it was the best look I have ever had. What was even better was the American Golden-Plover feeding next to it; what an oppotunity to compare them side-by-side. These ticked birds were thanks to Guy Monty, who had phoned me to let me know there was a Sanderling at the estuary. When I arrived, Guy had just spotted the Pacific Golden-Plover. The other huge find that day was a rare Cassin's Auklet, seen by both Guy and I while scanning from the beach access. 

Pacific Golden-Plover