Posted tagged ‘pender harbor’

Water Birds in East Vancouver and a Ferry Ride

December 23, 2011

The mountains beckoned over Trout Lake in East Vancouver.

Frost was on the ground.

Waterfowl swam about near the small beach, including mallards and American coots.

Coots are special favorites of mine for their charmingly ungainly physiques. Since I’ve seen the little balloon-bodied, white-faced birds on Trout Lake in summer months as well, I assume they are year-round residents.

American wigeons paddled about,

including this dainty female.

A Northern shoveller seemed in thrall to her impossibly large orange bill, following wherever it led.

She sometimes swam with the tip of her bill in the water, perhaps skimming small creatures as she went.

The park’s habitats include this tiny Louisiana-like marsh,

and this area of soft purplish plants and reeds.

A living fence of willow creates a virtually impenetrable barrier along one side of the lake.

Perhaps it secures a safe haven for nesting waterbirds, protecting them from cavorting off-leash dogs.

Occasional mini-dramas broke out among the mostly peaceable birds, notably a couple of thrilling, if brief, coot chases, one of which may be seen at about the 55-second mark in the video below.

Later we rode a ferry north on our journey to Garden Bay, a village on the Sunshine Coast’s Pender Harbor. From the ferry, snowy mountains shone in the distance.

Closer to us, the forested slopes tumbled to the water.

The sun set early, but light lingered.


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