Stilt, Wilson’s & Pectoral

After the morning showers I headed out to the Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary. On starting down the east dyke trail I noticed several warblers. Unfortunately they were staying in the tree tops. An unidentified fly catcher also remained elusive amongst the branches. Near the end of the trail I came across half a dozen Brown Creepers.

Brown Creeper
Brown Creeper

They were working the trees on both sides of the trail. These little guys can be tough to get as they forage for insects while moving up the tree trunks.

Brown Creeper
Brown Creeper

At least with that many in the area I had a chance for a couple of shots.

After checking the inside trails and still not finding any cooperative warblers I headed to the outer ponds. I was not expecting to find much as the tide was out and there likely would not be much around. While scanning a few of the usual peeps, Dowitchers and Lesser Yellowlegs I noticed something different.

Stilt Sandpiper & Lesser Yellowlegs
Stilt Sandpiper & Lesser Yellowlegs

It was a Stilt Sandpiper.

Stilt Sandpiper
Stilt Sandpiper

I followed it along and waited for it to come in a little closer.

Stilt Sandpiper
Stilt Sandpiper

This is the first Stilt Sandpiper I have seen with this fall’s migration.

Stilt Sandpiper
Stilt Sandpiper

Seen every year, they are not as common as some of the other Sandpipers. While watching the Stilt, something else caught my eye,

Wilson's Phalarope
Wilson's Phalarope

… a Wilson’s Phalarope.

Wilson's Phalarope
Wilson's Phalarope

Another good shore bird to see considering I was not expecting much here. After these pleasant surprises and a brief break I headed out to Boundary Bay. The bird I was wanting to get there were Pectoral Sandpipers.

Pectoral Sandpiper
Pectoral Sandpiper

While walking along the beach I located one small group.

Pectoral Sandpiper
Pectoral Sandpiper

They were a little wary at first,

Pectoral Sandpiper
Pectoral Sandpiper

… but I took my time moving in and they soon settled and continued foraging.

Pectoral Sandpiper
Pectoral Sandpiper

I have found that Pectoral Sandpipers are fairly approachable. And then poof,

Peregrine Falcon
Peregrine Falcon

… they were gone thanks to the Peregrine Falcon. It looks like the only it manage to get so far was some seaweed.

While trudging back along the beach I came across the bonus bird of the day.

Horned Lark
Horned Lark

A Horned Lark.

Horned Lark
Horned Lark

I think this is the first time I have seen one in this area of Boundary Bay.

Horned Lark
Horned Lark

A nice find to end the day, but why did it have to pick a piece of styrofoam to perch on?

Duck, Gull, Sandpipers & Plovers

Not having been there in several days I headed out to Reifel this afternoon. It was fairly quiet for a Sunday as far as people go. It was also relatively quiet on the birding front as well. New arrivals are still showing up,

Gadwall
Gadwall

… but the Gadwall due tend to be a little later with their broods.

On the shore bird front there were a number of Yellowlegs present.

Lesser Yellowlegs
Lesser Yellowlegs

Today most of those present,

Lesser Yellowlegs
Lesser Yellowlegs

… were Lesser Yellowlegs.

One bird I would not expect to find on the inner ponds,

Bonaparte's Gull
Bonaparte's Gull

… was this Bonaparte’s Gull.

Bonaparte's Gull
Bonaparte's Gull

Around here you would normally find them in open water and along the shore line.

Red-necked Phalarope
Red-necked Phalarope

There were four Red-necked Phalaropes,

Red-necked Phalarope
Red-necked Phalarope

… but they were not coming very close to the dyke.

After Reifel I headed down to Boundary Bay Regional Park in Tsawwassen for the high tide. A Pacific Golden Plover had been seen there earlier in the week.

Semipalmated Plover
Semipalmated Plover
Semipalmated Plover
Semipalmated Plover

It had been seen frequenting the area with some Semipalmated Plovers,

Killdeer
Killdeer

… and Killdeer. While I managed some shots of the Semipalmated Plovers and Killdeer, there was no sign of the Golden Plover.

Songbirds & Shorebirds

After some volunteer work at Reifel there was still time for a walk. The weather was not the greatest with overcast skies and intermittent showers. I started by watching a few groups of sparrows, always on the lookout for something out of the ordinary.

White-crowned Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow

But it was just the regulars present today.

House Sparrow
House Sparrow

Then there is the bane of the songbird world.

Brown-headed Cowbird
Brown-headed Cowbird

The Brown-headed Cowbird is a brood parasite. They make no nest of their own with the female laying her eggs in the nests of other species. These other birds will then raise the young along with their own.

Some shorebirds have been frequenting the inner ponds the last few days.

Lesser Yellowlegs
Lesser Yellowlegs

This Lesser Yellowlegs foraging and catching what looks like a small invertebrate.

Least Sandpiper
Least Sandpiper

Along with some Least Sandpipers doing the same.