Birders busy boosting the Bufflehead

You don’t have to be a senior to appreciate the tenacity and the punctuality of the Bufflehead duck.

  • Oct. 13, 2014 7:00 a.m.

The Friends of Shoal Harbour invite the public to join them in welcoming back the Bufflehead duck.

SIDNEY — You don’t have to be a senior to appreciate the tenacity and the punctuality of the Bufflehead duck.

The bird makes its return to the Saanich Peninsula next week and the Friends of Shoal Harbour Sanctuary (FOSH) are planning to be there to greet them at Roberts Bay, on Oct. 15.

They can be so specific thanks to the hard work of people like Kerry Finley, a biologist and member of FOSH who has studied their migrations. Over years of observation, Finley notes the arrival of the Bufflehead ducks is an accurate indicator of global weather patterns.

All Buffleheads Day on Oct. 15 from 11 a.m. to noon is a nationally-recognized public event to celebrate the return of the ducks from their  summer feeding and breeding grounds in the B.C. interior.

Their punctuality has been celebrated as more consistent than that of the famous Capistrano swallows.

Members of Friends of Shoal Harbour will provide spotting scopes and binoculars to look for the returning buffleheads and other birds. Everyone is welcome to watch for birds, enjoy the displays, and participate in an ivy pull and native garden planting. Todd Carnahan from the Habitat Acquisition Trust (HAT) will also be on hand to speak about the importance of native ecosystems and native plant gardens.

The public is invited to witness the return of the Buffleheads at the beach access at the corner of Resthaven Drive and Ardwell Avenue in Sidney.

The Shoal Harbour Migratory Bird Sanctuary was created in 1931. The Friends of Shoal Harbour Sanctuary is a citizens’ group that promotes awareness, appreciation and care of the Sanctuary.

— News staff, with files from FOSH



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