Skip to main content

Ryder gets LIFED at Buttertubs Marsh!

Ryder ready for action
Having lots of time on my hands at the moment, I took the opportunity to take Nolan and my nephew Ryder down to Buttertubs Marsh in Nanaimo. Ryder, who is five years old has taken a real interest in learning about birds and nature, so it was extra special to be able to show him some new birds. When we arrived at the marsh we got to see some Wood Duck from the first viewing tower.

Uncle Rich and Ryder

Ryder checking out the Wood Ducks
 After scanning the marsh we followed the trail seeing American Robin, Tree Swallow and Bushtit. We also heard Yellow Warbler and Marsh Wren singing. As we walked Nolan and I told Ryder that when you get to see a new bird, a bird you haven't ever seen before, we call it a lifer! Anyhow, we followed the trail and Ryder suggested sitting on the bench to listen for birds as it is easier to hear them. We were only sat down a few seconds when I could hear young birds begging for food. We walked around the corner and looked up to see a nest of Cedar Waxwing being fed by both parents! It was absolutely fantastic to see these cracking exotic looking birds at the nest! Both Ryder and Nolan (and ME) were very excited and we watched as both parents arrived with food, feeding their fledging young. There were three birds in the nest and one had already branched out. 

Cedar Waxwing

Cedar Waxwing adult
At one point Ryder started jumping up and down and saying "I JUST GOT LIFED!!!" Nolan and I thought that was awesome and I think Ryder may have just invented a new slang term for the birding world! Click on the link:   I just got LIFED!

Ryder and Nolan keeping it real!
We really did get lucky on this discovery as within ten minutes all four young completely fledged and flew with the adults to the other side of the marsh. Continuing on we found Brown-headed Cowbird, a family of Bushtit, Chestnut-backed Chickadee and Song Sparrow. We ended our day with an ice cold slushy form the local store....I believe Ryder got LIFED about 10 times today:)

Brown-headed Cowbird


Popular posts from this blog

Pied-billed Grebe

Silly o'clock and a drive to Summerset + a 2 1/2 hour watch at Ham Wall RSPB Reserve produced good looks at my first British P ied-billed Grebe. We turned up just after eight and just in time to miss this North American mega by  minutes! Little Grebes kept us on our toes but we had to wait it out until about 10:40 am when it appeared from the corner where it had disappeared. There was a nice crowd here, all remaining hopeful and humorous during this very cold vigil. This little beauty made a b-line to open water, affording all great views. Bonus bird at this site was a  Great White Egret .

Stains Moor

Today I checked the Staines Reservoir for some reported birds including Black Turn and Ruff. My target birds were not relocated but I did get another year bird: Wheatear . This was across the road; perched on a fence post. After an hour I headed to Staines Moor , a site I have never been to before. Good directional signs were non existent and I ended up asking the locals. It takes about 25 minutes from parking to actually getting onto the moor. This route is basically two public footpaths. It is definitely worth it and is a fantastic site with good visibility in all directions.The River Colne meanders through; making it very attractive and good for wildlife.  One of the features here that really stands out is the amount of yellow meadow ant hills; a favored perching spot for Wheatear I here. Birds seen included Coot, Moorhen, Mute Swan, Linnet, Goldfinch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Wren, Robin, Whitethroat, Chiffchaff, Black-headed Gull, Grey Heron, Buzzard, Kestrel, Hobby, Green

Kefalonia -Greece 2015

K efalonia is the largest of the Ionian Islands, (700 sq km) and is located off the west coast of Greece. Though, in recent times, it is most notably known as the location for Captain Corellis Mandolin; it also has lots of history, interesting geography and endangered fauna.  As it sits in the earthquake zone it has seen lots of changes, especially the 1953 earthquake which badly affected all but the northern town of Fiskado. Mount Ainos dominates the landscape and at 1628 meters can be seen from most areas. One of the most famous residents is the endangered Loggerhead Turtle which breed on the southern beaches.   What follows is a short trip report highlighting my casual observations from 23rd August – 30th August 2015. Though this was not a birding holiday, I did manage a few morning sorties in various areas and hope that this will give some indication of what to expect. Kephalonia is not a ‘birding destination’ but for those of you who visit, a little effort will afford