Sunday, 3 July 2016

The Wildlife of British Columbia Canada, Eagles Bears and Whales.

From June 6th - 16th I visited British Columbia in western Canada with my two (non wildlife photographer friends) Martin Crookes and Richard Plant. It was a bit of a whistle stop itinery with what must have been 1500 mile of driving. 2 nights Vancouver, 2 nights Kamloops, 2 nights Whistler, 2 nights Victoria and 1 Tofino on Vancouver Island and the last night back in Vancouver. The weather wasn't too bad except for Whistler where it rained and there was constant low cloud meant a cable car ride up the mountain was pointless. A total of 13 mammals, 6 reptiles and 77 birds were seen.

VANCOUVER AREA

Our hotel in Vancouver was in English Bay close to Stanley park which was the first place visited, we also visited Burnaby lake, Capilano suspension bridge park, and Grouse Mountain which was accessed via a cable car. On the way to the ferry crossing to Vancouver island we stopped at Reifel bird sanctuary. The weather was hot in Vancouver about 30 C the city was bigger and busier than I thought it would be.

 Stanley Park
 Sunset English Bay
 Capilano
Grouse Mountain
 
American Goldfinch
American Robin
Cedar Waxwing
Common Garter Snake

Douglas's Squirrel
Eastern Grey Squirrel
Great Blue Heron
Northern Flicker (female)
Northern Flicker (male)
Northwestern Crow
Pied Billed Grebe
Red Eared Slider
Red Winged Blackbird
Rufous Hummingbird (male)
Rufous Hummingbird (female)
Song Sparrow
Spotted Towhee
Tree Swallow
Violet Green Swallow
Willet
Wood Duck (male)
Wood Duck (female)
Sandhill Crane


 
Dark Eyed Junco 
 
Beaver 
 
 Black Capped Chickadee
 Black Oystercatcher
 Brown Headed Cowbird
 
KAMLOOPS
 
 
Kamloops has the distinction of being the hottest place in Canada and is a continuation of the deserts of the USA, as such the flora and fauna are quite different to other parts of British Columbia. The road to Kamloops also has the distinction as being the most dangerous in Canada in winter especially around Hope and Merritt. I was hoping to find a rattler or two but didn't even get a sniff of a snake. The area I looked was also plagued with mozzies which didn't seem too bothered about deet.
 


 
 
 
 
 
 American Coot
 American Kestrel
 Bald Eagle
 
 
 
 Burrowing Owl
 
 Clay Coloured Sparrow
 Eastern Kingbird
 

 Great Northern Diver
 
 
 
 Lazuli Bunting
 Western Bluebird
 Red Necked Grebe
 Red Tailed Hawk
 Western Meadowlark
Western Wood Pewee 
 Yellow Bellied Marmot
 
 Yellow Headed Blackbird
 
 
WHISTLER
 
 
The weather forecast for the next two days was poor, but I was hoping it would be wrong, it wasn't and was drizzly. That scuppered my chance of a second Marmot species the Hoary Marmot as low cloud covered Blackcomb mountain there was no point going up in the cable car. We didn't see many species here but dropped lucky with Black Bears seeing at least 5 different individuals along a road tipped off by an Irish chap.
 

 
Black Bear




Mule Deer
 
 
VANCOUVER ISLAND
 



 
 
 
We had two pre-booked whale watching trips one from Victoria and one from Tofino. Vancouver Island is massive and you could quite easily spend a fortnight on here. Wolves had been seen near Tofino but unfortunately we didn't see any.
 
 Anna's Hummingbird
 Bald Eagle
 Belted Kingfisher fem above male below

 Glaucous winged Gull
 Gray Whale

 Hairy Woodpecker
 Harbour Porpoise
 Harbour Seal
 
 Humpback Whale



 Northern Alligator Lizard


 Northwestern Garter Snake
 Painted Turtle
 Pigeon Guillemot
 Rhinoceros Auklet
 Mix of White Winged and Surf Scoters
 Sea Otter
 Steller's and Californian Sea Lions
 Californian Sea Lion
 Townsend Warbler
 Western Terrestrial Garter Snake

Wilson's Warbler
 
SPECIES LISTS (* DENOTES LIFER)
 
 
MAMMALS
 
1) Humpback Whale *
2) Gray Whale *
3) Harbour Porpoise
4) Steller's Sea Lion *
5) Californian Sea Lion
6) Harbour Seal
7) Sea Otter
8) Eastern Cottontail *
9) Douglas's Squirrel *
10) Eastern Grey Squirrel
11) Yellow Bellied Marmot *
12) Black Bear
13) Mule Deer
 
 
REPTILES
 
1) Common Garter Snake
2) Northwestern Garter Snake *
3) Western Terrestrial Garter Snake *
4) Northern Alligator Lizard *
5) Painted Turtle *
6) Red Eared Slider
 
 
BIRDS