Mar. 27 - 28 - Gull Days
Yesterday Guy accused me of becoming a "gull-a-phile." I haven't quite earned that sobriquet, but I must admit that in the past 9 days, I thoroughly enjoyed the Slaty-back, Herring, Bonies, and the 2 Glaucous. The one nickname I have definitely earned is "procrastinator." That was blatantly made clear when I met a stranger at French Creek yesterday who asked, "Aren't you supposed to be home doing your taxes?" Thanks for the reminder, Mike Tabak, and also thanks for pointing out my first Glaucous Gull. My excuse for being out yesterday was that I had to deliver some books to Milner Gardens. Today, my wife sent me out for milk. I thought the stores in Nanoose and Parksville were out so I had to go the Qualicum. I know that's a feeble excuse, but I just had to see the Glaucous again. It would have served me right if it weren't around, and it wasn't. But, there was another gorgeous one, even whiter than the first, and in the same little herring roe bay at French Creek.
Mar. 27 - Thanks to a book order from Milner Gardens, I had to drive to Qualicum. Of course, I had to stop at Parksville beach, French Creek, and Qualicum Beach. It was sunny, stimulating spring morning in paradise and nothing would spoil my day.
Parksville Beach was remarkably pretty in the morning sun with a glistening people-less beach and blue sky shimmering in the ripples. The large flocks of ducks and gull had disappeared but a few small flocks of Brant cruised in for an eel grass breakfast. A duck sitting on the beach caught my eye. I thought it might be sick or injured as I had never seen a sitting greater Scaup before. I was as close as I wanted and it still didn't move except to turn its head to look at me. Eventually, it got annoyed at my clicking shutter and flew into the bay. I hope it's ok.
I thought the Brant would be feeding on herring roe, but they seemed to be more interested in the eel grass coming in with the tide. I guess they like a balanced diet.
With the tide still half out, Qualicum was quiet except for a few gulls, oystercatchers, and turnstone, and they all loved sitting on their favorite rocks. The conditions were pefect for a few pictures even if it had to be the Western Gull.
You might be getting tired of the Harlequins, but I'm not. Since I'm paying for this website, I guess it's my choice.
I just love photographing the male Harlequin. One of these days - the perfect shot.
I saved French Creek for my return so the sun would be at a better angle. I was in for a double surprise as I got to meet Mike Tabak who is a fine birder from Vancouver, and he spotted my first ever Glaucous Gull. Thanks, Mike.
Unlike the fighting Glaucous that Guy posted last week, this one was getting along fine with all the other gulls. Mike suggested that there was so much food around that no one had to be possesive or territorial.
There was only some friendly jockeying for position.
"I just love these "all you can eat" restaurants."
"AH, happiness is a full stomach!"
I was definitely going to stay home today doing things (I won't mention what) that I was supposed to be doing. I had a good start as it was dark and drizzly out. But after lunch, Chris Stevens phoned to ask about the Glaucous. I was visualizing the the Glaucous at french Creek. I resisted for most of the afternoon, but as the skies lightened and my wife said, "We need milk," I was off with my camera.
Too bad there wasn't a blue sky or the King at French Creek would have been a candidate for a cover photo. (For anyone new to this site, the "King" is the French Creek belted Kingfisher that I often visit.)
As usual the little bay at French Creek was packed with gulls. The Glaucous stood out like a neon sign as it was busy chowing down herring roe amongst the mob of gulls. It was different than yesterday's as it was more white on the back and underwing.
It was kind enough to fly towards me and strut for better shot.
But, it was time to eat again.
"Just making sure I'm not too full to fly."
Amongst the gulls in the water were a few Barrow's Goldeneye.
NANAIMO - BACKYARD WILDBIRD & NATURE STORE SAVE-ON FOODS (WOODGROVE) SAVE-ON FOODS (COUNTRY CLUB) CHAPTERS FALCONER BOOKS COLE'S PORT ALBERNI - CLOCKTOWER GALLERY COURTENAY - GRAHAM'S JEWELLERS SAVE-ON FOODS SIDNEY - VICTORIAN BIRD HOUSE COMOX - BLUE HERON BOOKS BOWSER - LIGHTHOUSE GIFTS DEEP BAY - SAANICH - WILD BIRDS UNLIMITED VICTORIA - BOLEN BOOKS MUNRO'S IVY'S CAMPBELL RIVER - CAMPBELL RIVER MUSEUM BOOK BONANZA SAVE-ON FOODS DUNCAN - VOLUME 1 BOOKSTORE CHEMAINUS - LITTLE SHOP OF NOVELS LADYSMITH - SALAMANDER BOOKS NANOOSE - SCHOONER COVE MARINA SOOKE - SOOKE HARBOUR HOUSE Comments, questions, or book orders? email email@example.com
NANAIMO - BACKYARD WILDBIRD & NATURE STORE
SAVE-ON FOODS (WOODGROVE)
SAVE-ON FOODS (COUNTRY CLUB)
PORT ALBERNI - CLOCKTOWER GALLERY
COURTENAY - GRAHAM'S JEWELLERS
SIDNEY - VICTORIAN BIRD HOUSE
COMOX - BLUE HERON BOOKS
BOWSER - LIGHTHOUSE GIFTS
DEEP BAY -
SAANICH - WILD BIRDS UNLIMITED
VICTORIA - BOLEN BOOKS
CAMPBELL RIVER - CAMPBELL RIVER MUSEUM
DUNCAN - VOLUME 1 BOOKSTORE
CHEMAINUS - LITTLE SHOP OF NOVELS
LADYSMITH - SALAMANDER BOOKS
NANOOSE - SCHOONER COVE MARINA
SOOKE - SOOKE HARBOUR HOUSE
Comments, questions, or book orders? email firstname.lastname@example.org