Trumpeter Swans at Woodhus Slough

Trumpeter Swans (Cygnus buccinator) gliding over the water at Woodhus Slough. I headed out to Woodhus Slough this morning to do some casual birding with the kids and to check out how last week’s heavy rain, high tides and storm had affected the slough. The change was dramatic – while the dyke separating the slough from the ocean hadn’t been …

Flotsam and Jetsam at Goose Spit

We’ve been pretty much house bound over the last couple of days due to the weather here in the Comox Valley – high winds and lots of rain. We made a few short forays out for walks around the neighbourhood between squalls but for the most part hunkered down. When I woke up this morning I was stunned to see …

Toothed Jelly Fungus

One of the bonuses of doing a bird count is that you often end up in places that you haven’t been before. Such was the case yesterday when I was scouting out Seal Bay Regional Park which is in my assigned count area. I usually access Seal Bay from the main parking lot on Bates Road but in this case …

2009 Comox CBC – Pre-count Scouting

I’m leading a group of birders in Area 11 on the Comox Christmas Bird Count (CBC) this year and headed out today to do a pre-count reconnaissance of the area. The last time I birded this territory was back in 2004 with my wife and my mother-in-law. I knew that it had a variety of good birding habitat so when …

Merville Woods Mushrooms – Part 2

Earlier in November we enjoyed some mushrooms at Merville Woods, a second growth forest characterized by mixed conifers including pines. This post features a few more mushrooms that we found there. One was a mushroom that we had identified on a previous walk at Woodhus Slough but others remained a mystery even after creating a spore print and consulting our …

Merville Woods Mushrooms – Part One

We took advantage of good weather last week to get out to Merville Woods, just north of Courtenay, British Columbia. This is an area that is characterized by sandy soil, mixed pine and other conifer forest and a thick under story of salal. It’s prime mushroom habitat and many commercial pickers go there for both chantrelles and salal. We found …