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Boundary Bay - 104th and 72nd streets

Posted by birder on Sunday, November 18, 2012
On November 11th, I went out to Boundary Bay. My targets to see and photograph included Dunlin, the Tropical Kingbird, any owls I might stumble upon, Northern Shrike, and Rough-legged Hawk. I didn't get the shrike or hawk, but I got everything else.

While coming up 104th street, I noticed a pair of eagles building a nest farily low down. I didn't want to disrupt them, so I just snapped a could of photos before continuing on. Here are three of the photos:

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I arrived at Boundary Bay in the morning. First I went to 104th street. It was really cold, but as soon as I got my photo equipment out, one of my target birds flew into a Cedar Tree right near where I was- the Tropical Kingbird! I took a bunch of photos of it. It sat there for about 2 minutes, and it called once and a while. It then flew off. Here are two photos of it:

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After photographing the kingbird, I went up onto the dyke. Very far out on the mudflats there were thousands of Dunlin and a few Black-bellied Plovers. They were also thousands of ducks that were Mallards, American Wigeons, and Northern Pintail. Other than these and a couple White-crowned Sparrows in the bushes, there wasn't anything of interest, so I headed towards 72nd street to continue birding. While heading to 72nd, something sitting on a wire beside Hornby Drive caught my eye. It was an American Kestrel! Here is a photo of this beautiful small falcon:

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I soon arrived at 72nd street. I was told that a Long-eared Owl was seen (two birds had been in the area for multiple days). One person was kind enough to show me where the owl was. I snapped a couple photos, and then moved on, not wanted to disturb the owl.

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There were other birds of prey in the area as well. I counted 4 Short-eared Owls, a couple Northern Harriers, and 8 Snowy Owls. I stood in the same spot and took hundreds of photos of the Harriers and Short-eared Owls that flew by. I got so many good ones, so here are just a couple of them:

Short-eared Owls:
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Northern Harriers:
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While photographing these birds of prey, some other birds caught my eye. Thousands of Dunlin had settled in much closer than they had been previously. I stalked up to them, and began to take photos. Soon the were feeding and they kept on moving even closer towards me. But then, just as I was beginning to get some good pictures, a Peregrine Falcon flew over and they all flew off. While they flew off, and different bird in the flock caught my eye. It was a Pectoral Sandpiper. Here are some photos of the Dunlin and Pectoral Sandpiper:

Dunlin:
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Pectoral Sandpiper:
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From the dyke, I had counted 8 Snowy Owls. I decided I would get just close enough to get some decent photos, but not very close. Here are the final results. They were taken through a 400mm lens and a crop sensor on my Canon EOS 60D. They have also been heavily cropped on the computer.

Snowy Owl
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Snowy Owl with Northern Harrier
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I had a fantastic time at Boundary Bay. Another bird I saw but I didn't mention seeing were many Trumpeter Swans.

Thanks for looking!



 

 

 

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