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#89049
I recently went on a small trip around the Kootenays. It was our first time visiting and we took along our bikes and hiking shoes -- however, we were able to mix in a little birding as well! From Monday, 6/10/19, to Saturday, 6/15/19, we were able to identify over 60 birds. It was very cool .... here are a few photos of many of them ...

1) Gilpin Grasslands Provincial Park. We stopped here to ride and realized the trail was overgrown. Glad it was! We saw the Lazuli Bunting, Lewis Woodpecker (a family), Eastern and Western Kingbirds, and a few others. It was very easy to bird this location -- most of these birds were seen from the road in the first kilometer of the park.

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Lewis Woodpecker. The family was in a dead tree just off the road by the parking lot.

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Lazuli Bunting. These guys (as well as the Kingbirds) were hanging around the powerlines.

2) Nelson. We were in a couple of areas around Nelson (to include in town). Cottonwood Lake Regional Park, Whitewater Ski Resort road, and Pulpit Rock/Flagpole Hiking Trail. We saw birds at each of these locations without too much effort.

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Rock Pigeon. In town -- these guys need love sometimes. haha.

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Common Raven. They do too. Also in town.

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Stellar's Jay. We saw them both at Whitewater Ski Resort and Cottonwood Lake. We also saw the White-winged Crossbill and Pine Siskins galore on the road as we drove to Whitewater.

The Pulpit Rock trail produces a lot of birds. Here are two from there:

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A Robin in its nest. We had never seen a Robin in its nest before. It was acting strange when we walked by on the trail and then we saw the nest. As soon as I snapped a couple of photos we moved away so as not to cause too much distress.

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Hairy Woodpecker. As we walked this trail we saw evidence of woodpeckers--but we hadn't seen one the whole way, up or down. That is, until we were about one kilometer from the bottom. I heard this guy about 3 meters behind me on a tree.

3) Kaslo. A lovely little town with a mature forest nearby. We saw several different birds here both on the lakeshore and on the River Trail west of town.

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Townsend's Warbler. We saw this guy along the River Trail.

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Pacific Wren. We saw this little fella on the River Trail but closer to the River.

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Pileated Woodpecker. We saw him on the River Trail too (near the river). We saw a Belted Kingfisher but just couldn't snap a photo.

We made our way up to Slocan and spent some time riding south on the Slocan Rail Trail. A beautiful trail with many birding opportunities.

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Cedar Waxwing.

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American Redstart. Both of these birds, as well as many others, were right along the path. Another nice stop for some birding. Another nice thing about this trail is that there are trailheads and parking and several different locations. So, if you can't travel that far on foot, you can pick and choose where you want to spend your time along the trail.

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We were riding South on the trail and saw this tree (without the eagle). We assumed it was an Eagle's nest. When we were returning from the ride out, we saw the Eagle flying over our heads. As we approached the tree, I saw it up in the top. So majestic.

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As we arrived back near Slocan, we rode our bikes over near the trail entering Valhalla Provincial Park. These Common Mergansers were hanging out at the south end of the lake.

4) Ferry ride across towards Revelstoke. After we boarded the ferry across the lake we were able to get out of our car. There were three different kinds of swallows hanging out with us on the ride -- barn swallow, tree swallow, and violet-green.
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Barn Swallow. They would fly around a little while, then find a place on the boat to ride.

It was a nice loop around ... finished with a drive through Revelstoke, Vernon, and back to Kelowna (with a stop at Enderby Provincial park). We saw some Lazuli Buntings and a Willow Flycatcher there. I also saw what I thought was a real short, fat pony. Turned out it was a Brown (black) bear. haha. We didn't stick around real long.

I hope you enjoy the photos!
James
#89050
Excellent report and photos. We vacation every year in Kaslo and our time there includes the river trail loop at least once or twice as our older legs allow. I have spent a lot of time birding that area as well, and I envy your capture of the Redstart - I've only had looks but no photo opportunities up at the Fish Lake pass on the way from Kaslo to New Denver. Good capture of the Townsends Warbler - I've seen a lot of Yellow Warblers, some Nashville Warblers, and Orange Crowned Warblers every year along the trail from the Kaslo Hotel around back of the church and over to the beach at the bay there. I call it "Catbird Alley" since there are regular nesting Catbirds along there too. I regularly bird up around the west end of the Kaslo Airstrip and the Back Dirt Road and that's where I've had good photos of Lazuli Buntings and Mountain Bluebirds. I am heading up there in 2 weeks, and am vibrating with excitement already. Thanks for whetting my appetite.
#89051
GMcD wrote:
Jun 19 2:55 pm
Excellent report and photos. We vacation every year in Kaslo and our time there includes the river trail loop at least once or twice as our older legs allow. I have spent a lot of time birding that area as well, and I envy your capture of the Redstart - I've only had looks but no photo opportunities up at the Fish Lake pass on the way from Kaslo to New Denver. Good capture of the Townsends Warbler - I've seen a lot of Yellow Warblers, some Nashville Warblers, and Orange Crowned Warblers every year along the trail from the Kaslo Hotel around back of the church and over to the beach at the bay there. I call it "Catbird Alley" since there are regular nesting Catbirds along there too. I regularly bird up around the west end of the Kaslo Airstrip and the Back Dirt Road and that's where I've had good photos of Lazuli Buntings and Mountain Bluebirds. I am heading up there in 2 weeks, and am vibrating with excitement already. Thanks for whetting my appetite.
Thank you for the feedback! I think I heard some Yellow and Nashville warblers but only got a glimpse. That's funny about the Catbirds -- I thought I heard them but never saw them. I should have gone up behind that church ... I will next time. Thanks for letting me know a couple places to look on the next trip. Good luck in two weeks!
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