Find a Birding Spot Near Vancouver on the BC Bird Trail

Northern Flicker woodpecker

Northern Flicker Woodpecker. Photo Scottslm on Pixabay.

Did you know that British Columbia is on the Pacific Flyway, a major north-south migration route for birds flying between Alaska and Patagonia? That means that the Vancouver area is a great spot to go birding! The BC Bird Trail is a new initiative designed to help you find the best places to bird watch across BC. To get you started, here are a few BC Bird Trail locations near Vancouver.

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Find a Birding Spot Near Vancouver on the BC Bird Trail

Vancouver’s Dawn Chorus

The Birds, Artist, Myfanwy MacLeod Photo: Rob Weiss

Spring has sprung! Listen. Early mornings mean glorious sunrises and delightful songbirds, and for those inclined to get outdoors at the crack of dawn, a symphony of sound awaits. It’s true. Mother Nature regularly treats us to a melodic chorus as the songbirds announce the start of a new day.  It’s a soundtrack I adore. Of course, I am an early riser, often accused of being too perky, so grabbing my steaming cup of coffee and venturing outside to catch the first chirps and tweets is something I look forward to. Truth be told dawn is the optimum time to tune-in.

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Vancouver’s Dawn Chorus

Birds in the 604 – Vancouver Bird Week

Sandhill Cranes Photo Credit: Best Places to Bird in BC

Not just tourists are flocking to Vancouver this spring! May 6 – 13, 2017 marks Vancouver Bird Week, a tremendous celebration of our fine, feathered friends. “From bird nerd to bird curious, from wise old owl to adventurous tot” the jam-packed program of events offers something for everyone. Join the flock and participate in workshops, lectures, walks, exhibitions and numerous free activities offered throughout the city.

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Birds in the 604 – Vancouver Bird Week

Vancouver Air Traffic is Up! 50,000 Reasons to Visit the George C. Reifel Bird Sanctuary

Sandhill Crane George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary Vancouver

Photo: R. Weiss

Nestled between Vancouver’s thriving international airport and the Roberts Bank twin terminal port facility lies a natural oasis. Home to millions of birds, the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary is on Westham Island, just west of Ladner and only minutes from downtown Vancouver. On your approach to this amazing wildlife area, you will cross an old wooden one lane bridge and pass by quaint and quirky houseboats. Organic farms, ice cream stands and wineries welcome you to stop on route to the sanctuary and with each passing minute, you will begin to feel like you have left the hustle and bustle of the city behind you.

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Vancouver Air Traffic is Up! 50,000 Reasons to Visit the George C. Reifel Bird Sanctuary

Fairmont Vancouver Airport hosts two unique ‘Room & Bird’ packages for nature lovers

The Fairmont Vancouver Airport goes to the birds with their new 'Room & Bird' packages.

The Fairmont Vancouver Airport goes to the birds with their new ‘Room & Bird’ packages.

Located where high fliers – large and small, human and avian – gather daily, the Fairmont Vancouver Airport is hosting two unique birder-friendly packages.

It’s only natural that the Fairmont Vancouver Airport has organized two bird-based getaways. The hotel is located in the Fraser River estuary – home to the Pacifc Coast flyaway, a popular stopover for birds migrating from over 20 countries and three continents. Waterfowl and shorebirds from breeding grounds in Siberia, Alaska, Yukon, and other arctic and prairie areas all stop to refuel in the area on their way to warmer wintering grounds.

Dubbed their ‘Room & Bird’ packages, the number one ranked Airport Hotel in North America will entice naturalists and birders alike with two exclusive, field-trip based birding stays at the hotel.

Partnering with local conservation group WildResearch and Swarovski Optik, the two birding vacations include guided trips, use of luxury binoculars, accommodation at the hotel and meals.

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Fairmont Vancouver Airport hosts two unique ‘Room & Bird’ packages for nature lovers

Vancouver Hidden Gem Alert: Discovering Westham Island – Part II

Photo credit: USFWS Headquarters | Flickr

Photo credit: USFWS Headquarters | Flickr

Just 45 minutes south of Vancouver, tiny Westham Island has its own world-class bird sanctuary, farm stands and acres of pumpkin patches, and waterfront bike trails.  Check out Part I of this two-part series for more details.  

While the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary on Westham Island might not exactly be a hidden gem (the parking lot was filled beyond capacity when I visited), it amazes me how few Vancouverites have been there.  The 740-acre, waterfront refuge – intersected with leafy, winding pathways, lagoons and quiet backwaters – provides habitat for some 250 species of birds throughout the year.  Admission is $5 and you can buy a bag of birdseed for $1.

On any given day, you’ll be swarmed by hundreds (often thousands) of ducks, who want your precious seeds.  Over the weekend, I also saw at least a half-dozen great blue herons perched out in the water, red-winged blackbirds, brilliantly coloured wood ducks and tiny finches that have learned to eat out of your hand. Continue reading:
Vancouver Hidden Gem Alert: Discovering Westham Island – Part II

Hidden Gem Alert! Amazing Wildlife at Reifel Bird Sanctuary

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pervspics/4925777756/

Every visitor to Vancouver has their must-do list.  Stanley Park is always on there.  Then there’s Capilano Suspension Bridge and Grouse Mountain and Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Garden, among other great choices.

Almost no one has the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary on their list.  But they should.

A stunning reserve situated on 850 acres of coastal ponds and tidal marshes in nearby Delta, B.C., the Reifel Sanctuary is one of the most important stopovers for birds migrating along the Pacific Coast.  Translation:  Year-round, it’s chock-full of amazing wildlife, from majestic great blue herons to waist-high sandhill cranes, snow geese, owls and just about every kind of duck you could imagine.

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Hidden Gem Alert! Amazing Wildlife at Reifel Bird Sanctuary