Rek Bell

Bird journal

Collecting bird sightings like pokemon.

"To think like a mountain means to have a complete appreciation for the profound interconnectedness of the elements in the ecosystems. It is an ecological exercise using the intricate web of the natural environment rather than thinking as an isolated individual." Aldo Leopold


Vancouver Island

2023.05.21. Two glaucous-winged gulls are standing shoulder to shoulder, seemingly immobile, on the rocky shore of Prevost Island, screeching one after the other, mirroring each other, for a solid 10 minutes. We wondered, was it a game, or a casual conversation? Either way, I thought it sweet that they never talked over one another, a thing that humans do and that is never pleasant.

2023.04.19. Canadian geese are raising their young on the shores of the Victoria Inner Harbour. 3 yellow-feathered babies follow their parents as they walk through busy parking lots, and around tourists. Everyday I walk there and hope to find 3 babies trailing behind them.
One morning, we see a family of geese in the water swimming around the boats of our marina. One baby is swimming behind them. One. I hope that this is a different family. Then, we spot one baby left behind swimming between boats. The parents are swimming away, single baby in toe. "Maybe they're trying to find the baby but can't!" Devine says. We go and check on the baby that was left behind, and then we understand. The baby is swimming in circles, head cocked to the side. It's injured, and its parents know that it won't survive. We watch as the baby moves around the marina, swimming in tight circles. "We're so, so sorry..." we say to it.
The next day, we see a family of geese with 3 babies, all there, all intact, healthy. The family we saw in the water was a different family, one that was not as fortunate.

2023.03.04. A great horned owl picks Beacon Hill Park to raise two of its young, to the amazement of the many passerbys that transit the park everyday. It is a very public place to nest, I thought, and not a quiet one either. News spread of the young owls quickly in Victoria, and soon crowds gathered at the foot of the tree to try and catch a glimpse of the feathered family. Carers of the park setup a barricade to try and disperse the masses, giving the owl family some space. "Is this mother owl a bad parent?" I asked, as we strolled past their nesting grounds. Devine shrugs, "maybe it's there for the social media clout." We looked at each other then, "Owl clout." Yes. Maybe. We did find photos of them in local newspapers, and although we dont use Instagram or Twitter, we knew the family likely had a good 'clout score'.
Young great horned owls are grey, don't have tufts on their heads yet, and look like they're covered in felt.

2020.06.24. Days are very long now, there was good light at 2100 yesterday so Dev & I went out for a row around the bay. The local sailing club here lends out a rowing dinghy to members. Tsehum Harbor shoals at low tide, but the water was high enough that we could row everywhere. We circled the bay twice, following a large gathering of geese and their goslings. The goose caravan was eating filamentous algae as they went, making loud mouth sounds as they did. A very nice evening.

2020.19.02. Love taking walks along the beach at low-tide to see what is normally hidden. Lots of smooth rocks, miniature snails, barnacles and seaweed. Spotted some black turnstones too, small wading birds, picking crustaceans and mollusks from under stones and algae mats.


New Zealand

South Pacific Islands

North Pacific Ocean

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