Monday, March 25, 2013

Café Oiseau Rare (Rare Bird Cafe)




According to the 1966 Golden Field Guide Birds of North America (gifted to me by Mom)  this little guy sitting out the rain at our feeder is a Skylark, common to Vancouver Island.  He is very fat and often comes with his girlfriend but today he was solo, perhaps she is back at the nest sitting on eggs.  I love watching them-usually they avoid coming in the rain though.  He must have been hungry.


These little birds were introduced to Canada from Britain in about 1900.  Since the 1970s their numbers have declined and the only place in North America you still find them is on Vancouver Island.  I read one article that stated most are near Victoria and there were only about 100 pairs left.  

Apparently we are extremely fortunate to have these guys feeding at our cafe!  After taking these pictures  three were spotted later in the day feeding together.  They must have decided there were too many tourists in Victoria and flew the 300km North to the Comox Valley.


Yesterday coming back from the thrift store I saw my first baby fawn of the year, still sticky from birth.  We have tons of deer around here and he was with a group of four deer by the side of the road.  I need to start carrying my camera in the car!

****UPDATE**** I have been corrected - it is a Pine Siskin!  This bird is not in my birding book so I was going on  a Vancouver Island Birding Website but The Rambler is correct, this is definitely a Pine Siskin.  Not so rare but definitely beautiful all the same and he is currently singing his brains out in my backyard.  Now to find a better birding book!

14 comments:

  1. How fortunate for you to have seen them. I love your pictures, they always look wonderful.

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    1. Thanks - I just love watching these guys

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  2. Such a sweet little bird. I know it is beautiful where you live!

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    1. Yes, it is beautiful here - I am so thankful we got to move here!

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  3. Thank you so much for sharing!!!

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  4. I think I saw one at our feeder today, but thought it was a little, fat sparrow instead. Thanks for the identification for me. - Margy

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    1. Sorry for the misidentification but they are still pretty darn cute!

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  5. I just found your blog and was pleased to see a post on a bird. I hate to be the one to burst your bubble, but what you have is a Pine Siskin. Note the yellow on the edge of the wing. I just looked in my Golden Field Guide Birds of North America, and there is no listing for a Skylark. My book is a revised and updated 2001 edition. Don’t be disappointed, a Pine Siskin is a very fine bird and appears at feeders this time of year in good numbers. Here is the link to Pine Siskin in my website. http://cascaderamblings.com/critters.php?critter=1324767917

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    1. Thanks for setting me straight! I appreciate any help I can get on identifying them.

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  6. Skylarks were around Beacon Hill Park and U Vic in the days when I was a serious coast birder.

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  7. The National Geographic bird book is good as is the Sibley but it is more expensive.

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    1. I will keep an eye out for it-thanks for the tip

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  8. So wonderful to have wildlife surrounding you! (the non-dangerous kind!)My dad was a serious birder - he helped bring bluebirds back to southern ontario and received a trophy for his efforts. Now my brother makes and sells birdhouses since he retired. Once in PEI I hope to plant bushes/trees that will attract birds and butterflies - it's a wonderful feeling living close to nature!

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