Category: bird watching

Bird watching (actually, bird listening): varied thrush

Keeping track of birds leads to self-tutoring: the tutor mentions the varied thrush. Often, birds prefer to be heard, not seen. So it can be with the varied thrush, whose song I’ve heard in the yard, but haven’t seen from

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Bird watching, lifestyle: Oregon dark-eyed junco, part II

Bird watching means constant self-tutoring. The tutor mentions another encounter with a dark-eyed junco. March 8 last year, my post was about a couple of dark-eyed juncos. This morning, I had no idea they’d compel me to write another post

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Bird watching, lifestyle: When a Steller’s jay comes calling….

Bird watching means self-tutoring. The tutor reports observing a Steller’s jay – an event he anticipates each year. My reading suggests that Vancouver Island is not part of the permanent range occupied by Steller’s jays. However, they absolutely do come

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Math: how far away is the goose?

Tutoring math, you notice that people like relatable examples. The tutor brings up his observation of a Canada goose. Looking out over a lake in Nanaimo on Sunday morning, I saw an exceptional Canada goose swimming apart from the others.

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Bird watching: horned lark?

Bird identification involves constant self-tutoring. The tutor describes a bird he saw, and attempts to identify it. Yesterday’s sunny afternoon, I noticed something odd from the corner of my eye. I had no idea what it would be, just that

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Bird watching: Oregon dark-eyed junco

The tutor shares a welcome backyard observation. Here on Vancouver Island, we’ve had a cold winter. Normally, we get spring weather starting by mid-February – not this year. It’s slowed down my activity as a naturalist. Today, however, I noticed

Bird watching: when a hummingbird lands on a fence

The tutor shares an observation from yesterday. Yesterday’s high was 24, but the humidex reached 28. Around here, that’s hot. Working on the roof of a shed, I noticed, from the corner of my eye, about twenty feet away, something

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Lifestyle: bird identification from field guide: white-crowned sparrow

The tutor shares another backyard identification. If a person isn’t looking closely, a white-crowned sparrow is easy to miss, even in the yard. They forage on the ground, but can seem from a distance to be dull-colored and “just another

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Lifestyle: bird identification from field guide: rufous-sided towhee

The tutor shares another backyard bird identification. Similarly with Audubon’s warbler (see my post about it here), I could only identify the rufous-sided towhee through the binoculars. I heard the call, detected flitting in a hedgerow, then raised the binoculars

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Lifestyle: bird identification from field guide: Audubon’s warbler

The tutor shares an exciting backyard observation. While supposedly we’re in springtime, any given day can be like summer. Yesterday and today are examples. The temp is only 16C, but the air is soft and stable like a summer’s day.

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