Snow Bunting encounter

This evening I took my dogs for a walk along Iona's South Jetty. The sun was out and it was a beautiful evening. I purposefully went late in the afternoon just before sunset, so that very few people would be on the jetty. It had snowed the night before and it was pretty out there. I found the Snow Bunting at Marker 125. I told my dogs to lay down and they watched me as I lay sprawled out on the jetty shooting shots of this little beauty. My dogs don't chase birds since I've trained them since puppies and they sat quietly looking at us. The bunting let me literally walk right up to it. He then started walking towards me and he became too close so that I couldn't take photos and had to back up. They sure are little cuties. He was very much at home in the cold air and tiny bit of snow on the ground.

It was nice to be all alone with him. Yesterday, I spent the day with some amenable Pine Grosbeaks in Point Grey and today with another winter bird.

It feels like the winter season is quickly slipping away. I for one will miss it!. Soon the owls, Gyrfalcon, Prairie Falcon, Pine Grosbeaks and Gray-crowned Rosy-finches will be replaced with the returning migrants. Tree Swallows are already back.... time changes so fast and even faster these day due to global warming.

Speaking of global warming... Snow Buntings are greatly impacted now by climate change on their breeding grounds. The warmer temperatures cause them to return too early which doesn't align with their food source abundance and hatchlings die. Also other birds move in to breed in their territory due to much warmer climates causing increased competition for food and nesting habitat. With so much at stake for so many species and also us humans, I wonder when the world will wake up to climate change. We need a mass movement to combat this problem and I really hope it comes quick because the alternative outcome by just sitting idly by is really grim.

Snow Bunting in Richmond - Photos: Melissa Hafting


  1. Those are seriously stunning shots Mel!!!! Love the lighting too!

    1. Thank you so much viktor one of the tamest ones i ever saw. nice to get it isolated from a large flock. cheers


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