If you’ve been following Another Enthusiast for long, you’ll know I like the crows. I’ve posted about them a few times (1, 2, 3). Now I bring you a news-style video piece on the subject. This was done with the help of my classmate, Michaela Ross.
What do you think of crows? Are they an annoyance, or are you pro-crow? That’s why there’s a comments section, turkey. Let us know what you think!
Yesterday, a classmate and I headed out to Colony Farm Regional Park in Coquitlam to speak to a bird expert about crows. For school, we’re doing a short news piece about the crows who congregate in massive numbers near BCIT. Our expert’s name is Derek Matthews. We found him out in the park engrossed in a bird banding session with his gang from the Vancouver Avian Research Centre. We were able to pull him aside for a short interview about the crows, but we also got to take in the bird banding session while we soaked up the incredibly beautiful February sunshine.
The above picture shows a sparrow with a band. I believe this bird had been banded last year. They recorded her (I think it’s a her) fat reserves and weight, among other details, before letting her fly free.
The nets used are strung across a large span (maybe 25 or 30 feet) and they have long horizontal pockets that trap the birds. This is a young male Red-winged Blackbird who has found himself tangled up.
It’s pretty rare to get the chance to photograph these birds from such a close distance. He’s being held in place for this shot. Notice the red wing markings are coming in slowly, indicating youth. You can’t exactly see from this photo, but he’s a little smaller than a fully grown Red-winged Blackbird would be.
Once he’s been banded and examined, he’s let free. I apologize to this young volunteer from the Vancouver Avian Research Centre, as I’ve forgotten his name. This isn’t Derek, though.
Dad, I know you keep coming back for the bird pictures, so here you go. I thought you’d like what you can see of that big old wooden boat in the background, too. This actually isn’t the same heron as the “S” one from a few days ago. I found this happy camper down at Granville Island.
I assure you that I won’t post all of my letter pictures, but here’s “S.” It’s a heron, I think. You don’t want to know how long I sat there waiting for it to make the right shape with its neck.
Well it’s old news now (see my original Northern Flicker post here), but this guy has been around an awful lot lately. He kindly gives a call every time he shows up so you can get the camera ready and head outside. I’ve figured out that it isn’t just one Flicker, as I’d suspected, but rather a few that have been coming around.
This time he came in nice and close to show us all his smart red handlebar moustache and the great time he’s having with those dogwood fruits (berries?). I’ve been seeing and hearing the Flickers all over town. You can’t miss the distinctive plumage and call.