Showing posts from August, 2018

Hand feeding a Steller's Jay

On Wednesday I hiked up with my friend Shou to Bowen Lookout on Cypress Mountain to see some Canada (Gray) Jays and feed them. While I had my hand out and was busy feeding 6 Canada Jays, this beautiful Steller's Jay came and landed on my hand. If only I could have taken a picture of myself ! haha Seller's Jay in West Vancouver - Photo: Melissa Hafting This has never happened to me before and it was a real thrill. I love the Canada Jays and they were worth the hike, feeding those cute birds is a highlight every time. The sounds they make and how smart they are is fascinating. However, having a new bird like a normally shy Steller's Jay on my hand is pretty special. They usually stay close to you when I'm feeding but never everdare to come close enough to jump on my hand. Gotta appreciate the simple joys of life, especially in today's times. I keep a list of all the birds that have fed on my hand and so far it includes Red-winged Blackbird, Yellow-headed Bla

A crazy birding weekend in Vancouver with Marshall Iliff from Team eBird

Well ever since my successful Ptarmigan Hike, I have been running around like a chicken with its head cut off. First moderating the young birder talks and attending some of the events at the IOC. But most of all birders have been keeping me busy with constant rare bird reports at the RBA I manage. The city of Vancouver is so busy right now with all the out of town birders and ornithologists reporting birds to me all day long and asking ID questions. Blackpoll Warbler and Black-and-white Warblers and Clay-coloured Sparrows were found. Also so many Northern Waterthrushes have turned up and American Redstarts (a bird I chased 12 times and only recently got at QE Park... thank you Cole!) and even a few Least Flycatchers.These are all birds I needed for the year. In this week of the IOC I was able to get over 250 birds for Metro Vancouver, before the end of August which is a new record for myself. Kevin Louth had turned up some great shorebirds in this past week, including a Buff-breaste

Watch my tv interview with the young birders + The Young Birders spoke so well at VIBF!

On August 23, I moderated the presentations of 4 young birders Toby, Adam, Liron and Ian and they were just brilliant. Their passion for conservation shone through and they just blew the audience away. It was so nice to see the amount of community support and Bird Studies Canada's Jody Allair's nice words to the youth after their presentations was really sweet. Here were their topics: Toby Theriault, age 14 spoke on  "Seabirds and plastic pollution" Ian Harland, age 18 spoke on “The artistic side of bird photography” Liron Gertsman, age 18 spoke on   "The importance of photography for conservation" Adam Dhalla, age 13 spoke on  " Shade-Grown Coffee in Costa Rica & its Positive Impact on Birds I was told that the youth had the largest audience in the community theatre at the VIBF all week! After their presentation we were all interviewed for a youth news program called "Gen Why" on Shaw TV, which you can watch HERE Here is a p

Young Birder Ptarmigan Hike to Illal Mtn - August 19/18

A preview of what's to come, plus a fun fact: White-tailed Ptarmigan or (Snow Quails) are the smallest bird in the grouse family... Adult White-tailed Ptarmigan on Illal Mtn - Photo: Melissa Hafting 1 of the 5 White-tailed Ptarmigans we ended up seeing on this trip! This one is a chick - Photo: Melissa Hafting If you have followed my blog and my young birder trips, you would know that White-tailed Ptarmigan is the BC Young Birder group's nemesis bird! Over the years I have led 9 hikes all over the province looking for them with the kids. I have seen them on my own or with other adults but when I would take the youth we would constantly dip.Well except for a trip Liron and I did where we saw an all white bird in winter.   So this time I made a promise to myself that I would get the youth their ptarmigan. They are never easy birds at any location but I was determined to try. I researched for months where was my best chance. Last year we did Whistler, Mt. C

Bald Eagle nest illegally destroyed in Surrey...Sign the petition to help!

To find out how this nest that was active for 9 years was illegally cut down since it hindered human development watch the video below: This defied the BC Wildlife Act as Bald Eagle Nests are protected year round. Please sign the petition to help prevent this from happening again and to force the creation of an artificial nest with pole for the returning Bald Eagle pair to this nest site; and the preservation of the land around this nest site. Sign The Petition HERE

Watch Young Birder Liron on TV!

Today Liron was on Breakfast Television on City TV discussing his nature photography. He did an excellent job. The segment was called "Meet A Nature Photographer Prodigy" and he discusses how he uses his beautiful photos to promote conservation. You can watch the full interview  HERE .

Come out to a free screening of the "Bird of Prey" film! Plus get your tickets for Young Birder talks at the VANBIRDFEST now!

UPDATE as of Aug 8, tickets are now SOLD OUT! Come out to a free screening of the Bird of Prey film. I discussed this film previously on my blog it is about the Philippine Eagle (the rarest and largest eagle in the world) and looks amazing. The movie will begin on August 22, 2018 at 7:30pm at the Omnimax Theatre at Science World in Vancouver and finishes at 10pm. There will be a Q&A session with the researchers from Cornell University and the filmmakers as well. The film is presented by Science World, The Vancouver Int'l Bird Festival and The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Register for your FREE tickets while supplies last HERE I can't wait to see this! You can watch the trailer below: Also if you remember my blog post from a few days ago HERE . I was discussing that 4 Young Birders are talking about very important topics (read them at the link above) at the Nature & Bird Expo . Tickets are on sale now to come out and watch the young birders speak at