Friday, November 13, 2009

Vancouver Island – August ‘09 – Final entry

Come hell or high water I’m going to get this trip finished today!

We’re now at Miracle Beach Provincial park which is situated on the east side of Vancouver Island, between the towns of Courtney and Campbell River.  There is a large campground here, part of which is open year round.

This is always a very birdie place.

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a couple of notables this time were families of Black-throated Gray Warblers….

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and these little Winter Wren that can always be found there.

Deer at Miracle Beach

this deer was tip toeing through the woods between the back of our campsite and the adjacent road.  Deer are a very common sight on Vancouver Island.

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and here is a view of the beach itself.  Actually, there is a beautiful sandy beach under that water but it seems the last few times we’ve visited here we’ve been at a time when the tides aren’t changing much and all we get is rock.

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What there were a lot of this time were these red Jelly fish.  Having grown up living beside a beach I’ve had more than one encounter with this stinging creatures.  They only show up when the water is quite warm.

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this is ‘Black Creek’ at the most northerly end of the beach.  This is the area where dogs are allowed, but is also the end that has the most bird life, so is where we spend most of our time.

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there were a variety of shorebirds here…Greater Yellowlegs (the big one), a couple of Black Turnstones, and Killdeer – lots and lots of Killdeer

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this shot shows a couple of the Yellowlegs and a Killdeer.  There were also a few of those little Western Sandpipers we’d seen on the west coast.

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but the most exciting and prolific species were Black-bellied Plovers…..

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Here is a closer look….they are all in various stages of changing from their breeding colors to their non-breeding colors.  The little guy in the middle is another of those Black Turnstones.

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another look – there had to be at least 50 of them, obviously just stopping for a rest while migrating south.

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there were a few gull here as well.  I’m putting this guy down as a Ring-bill although I’m not really sure that is right.  Maybe he is between plumages but something just doesn’t look right. 

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I’m tossing this one in here.  This is the view from my daughter’s deck……..

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When we got back from visiting, there were even more Plovers than there had been the day before.

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another look at some of the plovers

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and a final look at the beach and those jelly fish.

Thus ending this trip.  Think we found the shorebirds we were hoping to see!

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