Tag Archive | birds calgary blog

Furry Friday: White-tailed Deer Buck

Paul Turbitt first saw this magnificent ten-point White-tailed Deer buck in Fish Creek Provincial Park last December. He photographed it, and its young companion, in late December and early January.

121202 monarch

121230 Tenner

121230 Littlee buck

1212330 Tenner-2

130105 BH4

130105 BH3

130105 BH1

For more of Paul’s photos, see his blog, Turbo’s Track and Tour.

Zoo Ospreys are Back – Watch Live

The Ospreys are back on the nesting platform at the Calgary Zoo. So far there are just a few sticks on the platform, so if you tune in to the live Enmax web cam, over the next few weeks you can watch them build the nest, lay eggs, and raise their young until they fledge.

Below is a link to the web cam. We will also have a link on the right sidebar of our Home Page throughout the nesting season. Check out the U of C Peregrine Falcon nest cam too!

Go to the live web Osprey nest cam here.

Alberta Headwaters Petition

(Link to the Petition here.)

In about two months the Alberta government will be releasing its draft of the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan. This will have a huge impact on the future of the wildlife, plants, and water resources of the headwaters. Naturalist, writer, and former superintendent of Banff National Park Kevin Van Tighem has started an online petition asking the government to “Treat our Alberta Headwaters like the treasures they are.”

Kevin says, “Those responsible for finalizing the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan are under a lot of pressure to protect the status quo for industrial-scale logging in the headwaters, and are being lobbied very aggressively by off-road vehicle users who want no restrictions on their activities.  I believe we have a good Minister; I also believe she’s under a lot of pressure.”

Kevin adds, “Most of us likely remember – I certainly do – when the foothills and Front Ranges were like paradise — before they were brought down to their current state by multiple-abuse.   The South Saskatchewan Regional Plan will have quasi-regulatory status and is meant to be a strategic roadmap to our next fifty years.   It’s really important that those who believe we can do better for our headwaters – the forests, creeks, meadows, trout, grizzlies and wild places that yield all the water that comes down the rivers to where we all live – make themselves heard.”

IMG_2130

Here is the text of the petition:

A century of clear cut logging, oil and gas development and out-of-control off-road vehicle abuse has left the headwaters of the South Saskatchewan River fragmented and scarred. Natural river flows are 12% lower than in the mid twentieth century. Climate change will only make things worse.
Alberta is about to release a South Saskatchewan regional land use plan that was prepared with wide citizen consultation. But special interest groups with a stake in business-as-usual want to ensure it contains no limits on off-road abuse, increases clear cut logging, and promotes more development.
Those who care about healthy landscapes, clean rivers and future water security need a chance to inform the government that they support a plan that keeps the mountains and foothills green and healthy by establishing new parks, restricting off-road vehicles to official trails, replacing clear cutting with restoration logging, and repairing landscapes damaged by past industrial and motorized abuse.
Healthy intact headwaters don’t just produce more and better water – they yield better fishing and hunting, more secure and productive habitat for elk, grizzlies and native trout, and the aesthetic and ecological qualities that yield the finest of recreational environments.

If you would like to support this cause and sign this petition, go to the petition website,  and share this with friends and family.

Sunday Showcase: Mountain Bluebird Fallout

Posted by Dan Arndt

Since the snowstorm on Sunday, April 14, many Mountain Bluebirds have been reported in the city. These migrants were forced down by the weather. Over 100 were reported in Fish Creek Park, about two dozen at the Inglewood Bird Sanctuary, and about 40 in a yard in Maple Ridge. Rob English spotted these bluebirds feeding in the Mountain Ash trees near his home, and sent us these great photos.

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

female Mountain Bluebird

female Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

After hearing about the large flocks all around the city, and that the numbers were quickly dwindling at Inglewood Bird Sanctuary, I headed out on Tuesday evening with the Swarovski ATX 85, Pentax K-30, and digiscoping adapter, and spent a good hour watching and photographing a flock of six stragglers. While I had hoped that they would stick around so our Sunday group would get a chance to see them, I couldn’t take that chance, and boy am I glad I did!

You lookin' at me?

You lookin’ at me?

female Mountain Bluebird

female Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebirds

male Mountain Bluebirds

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

male Mountain Bluebird

Peregrine Falcons at U of C

Since at least 1995, Peregrine Falcons have nested on Craigie Hall at the University of Calgary. For the past few years, there has been a live nest cam so that we can watch the falcons at the nest, and see the young falcons hatch and fledge.

The first returning Peregrine was sighted on March 25 this year, and by April 9 the pair was ready to nest. The first egg was laid on April 16. We will have a link to the nest cam on the sidebar of our Birds Calgary home page throughout the breeding season.

Click here for the live nest camera feed.