Monday, April 14, 2008

Owls: reluctant crowd-pleasers.

The parking lot at Reifel was already overflowing by 10 AM. Perhaps it was because it was the first warm day of the year and everyone in the Lower Mainland had just discovered his/her inner birder, or perhaps there was something more. A Wood Duck Festival or something. So I asked the woman at the Admission window, “Anything special going on today?”

“There’s the owl’s nest. With three fluffy white babies.”

“Where’s that?”

“Take the East Dyke Trail and look for the crowd of people pointing cameras at a tree.”

So about five minutes later I was pointing a camera at a tree.

Although the adult owl and the owlets were being relatively cooperative, occasionally popping up and looking around, it was hard to get Mr. Hesitation to focus on bundles of fluffy feathers. He kept cuing in on the cottonwood branches. Oh, Mr. Hesitation, look around you at all the digital SLRs and know that there is a bedroom closet with your name on it.

The double-edged sword of nesting in an expansive bird sanctuary if you are a large, powerful raptor:

Pro: There’s plenty of food around, relatively few dangerous roads, and you’re not as likely to get shot.

Con: All those cameras.

"You may all leave, now. The children are becoming over-stimulated."

“What? No festival?”


Chrisss said...

Gotta tell you, I love your blog. Discovered it a few days ago and have been addicted since....:o)

Hugh said...

Thanks, Chrisss. I see you are here (in southern BC) too. I look forward to reading more on your blog.