Birder's Guide

MAR 2014

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

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63 March 2014 | Birder's Guide to Travel Victoria, BC motmot@shaw.ca Ann Nightingale ocated on the west coast of Ca- nada, Vancouver Island is a big island—290 miles (460 km) long—but an island nonetheless. You won't fnd venomous snakes, poison ivy, poison oak, skunks, porcupines, moose, or possums on Vancouver Island, but if you are very lucky, you might see a wolf or a cougar. Birding is typically done on "is- land time"—relaxed and easy—although there is enough diversity to keep even a serious lister busy. Nestled in the rainshadow of Wash- ington state's Olympic Mountains, the climate of southern Vancouver Island is temperate throughout the year. The sum- mers are warm and generally dry, and the winters are cool, but much less rainy than nearby Vancouver, British Columbia, and Seattle, Washington. Temperatures fall L Imagine an island in the Pacifc with lush rainforests, rugged coastlines, sandy beaches, famous hiking trails, and close to 400 species of birds. Did you think of Canada? below freezing occasionally during the winter, but prolonged cold snaps are rare. This moderate climate makes the area one of the frst suitable stops—and often the wintering destination—for many north- ern species on their southward migration. Victoria's Christmas Bird Counts have re- corded as many as 154 species on a single day, and more than 220 species overall. Victoria is the capital city of British Columbia and the hub of southern Van- couver Island. With a population of about Sky Lark. Photo © Liron Gertsman 9-Vancouver.indd 63 3/4/14 1:21 PM

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