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Greenbirding - A Journal

Occasional short observations - mostly (but not always) about wildlife and gardens

Greenbirding - A Journal/

Northern Crescents and Trail Maps

By | 2017-08-23T15:40:26+00:00 August 23rd, 2017|birds, butterflies, insects, trails|

There were some exceptionally heavy storms in this part of Quebec yesterday so we changed our usual “Wednesday Wander” in the Arboretum to a walk of equivalent distance along the riverside in Cap-St-Jacques - for the exercise and to see what was around. A couple of years ago I added a Guide to West Island Birding Sites to my small collection of free guidebooks. I think it is useful and lots of people have [...]

Grand Manan/Fundy 2017 – #6: Dawn light, Puffins, Seals and Turnstones

By | 2017-08-18T22:10:57+00:00 August 18th, 2017|birding, birds, landscape, photography|

SO … Finally, the chapter you have all been waiting for. We’ve had Whales and Owls and scenic views and 30,000 Sandpipers but now, at last, we have PUFFINS. Very much the target species for quite a few of the group. You asked, and we deliver. This last day of the tour was a very early start … dawn was still breaking as the boat left the harbour (just feast [...]

Grand Manan/Fundy 2017 – #5: Burrowing Owl, Nelson’s Sparrow, a Forest, Indian Pipes & Misty Cliffs

By | 2017-08-17T14:25:55+00:00 August 17th, 2017|birds, butterflies, flowers, landscape|

This is the penultimate chapter in the account of island life. There will be a later addendum account of some interesting plants recorded, but for the birders and whalers we finish tomorrow with PUFFINS. Wednesday was a fascinating mix of good things, so there is a quite an eclectic mix here for you to enjoy. Stating with a visit to a saltmarsh reserve (Castalia Marsh) on the eastern shore of the island where a [...]

Grand Manan/Fundy 2017 – #4: Seabirds, Whales (and Rick Mercer)

By | 2017-08-16T12:49:31+00:00 August 16th, 2017|birds, flowers, landscape|

(The Puffins are coming - just not today.) This was a BIG day with lots happening. Tuesday had been forecast from a week beforehand to be wet - usually that means one of the days either side will be wet instead, but as the date approached it became clear rain really was in our future. The scheduled trip that day was to Machias Island for Puffins and Seals but fortunately Quest managed to renegotiate [...]

Grand Manan/Fundy 2017 – #3: Blacks Harbour and first seabirds

By | 2017-08-15T20:42:27+00:00 August 15th, 2017|birding, birds, flowers|

This is a shorter piece and a somewhat quieter day before we get to the half-day "pelagic" trip that I will recount - with many photographs - tomorrow. After that? We have a Burrowing Owl waiting for you ... yes, in New Brunswick! Stick with us. After the Sandpipers on Monday morning (see yesterday’s post) we passed a few hours in driving from the Moncton area down to St-John and beyond there to Black’s Harbour [...]

Grand Manan/Fundy 2017 – #2: Sandpipers and Flowerpots and a Reversing River

By | 2017-08-14T18:13:37+00:00 August 14th, 2017|birding, birds, summer|

If you are here for the Puffins, they will be appearing in considerable number (and in video) in the last post of this series :) ... but today we offer you spectacular video of 30,000 Sandpipers instead. The week started in Moncton and along the coast of the upper Fundy Bay - perhaps the muddiest place on the planet. Moncton is not a scenic city but it does have a very, very good seafood [...]

Grand Manan/Fundy 2017 – Prologue

By | 2017-08-13T11:40:58+00:00 August 13th, 2017|birding, birds, butterflies, insects, landscape|

Lots of Photographs, lots of birds and a few whales and butterflies. We have just returned from a stupendous week of (mostly) intensive birding plus a bit of botanising in the Bay of Fundy that produced some amazing photographic opportunities we would like to share with our friends.  Usually, after these trips we produce a lengthy “trip report” but, let's face it, they can be just a bit too long for some, otherwise interested, [...]

Nerds Corner …

By | 2017-07-30T11:25:52+00:00 July 25th, 2017|biology, nomenclature|

Idle Thoughts … on the common naming of plants and animals. Life needs rules - trust me, it does.   As we all know, it is standard practice to capitalise the common names of birds (because not all blue birds are Bluebirds) but we generally don’t do so for plants. Thus Blue Jay and not blue jay. The media mostly ignore this convention, but the media are wrong to do so. If using Latin names [...]

Feeling Bitter

By | 2017-08-12T17:55:52+00:00 July 6th, 2017|culture|

Twenty years ago when we left England we brought with us a pretty large bottle of Angostura Bitters, an essential component of any gentleman’s armamentarium. It isn’t used that often, when it is used it’s only a splash at a time but when you need a Pink Gin, a Manhatten or an Old Fashioned then nothing else will do … even when you are the designated driver a dash of AB in a bottle of [...]

On Not Dipping a Dipper (and finding a career)

By | 2017-06-24T21:42:22+00:00 June 24th, 2017|birds|

It struck me some time ago that books by birders seem to be obliged to include a section about how the author got into birding in the first place … why should I be different? You always wanted to know this didn't you? Well ... My father and grandfather were both engineers. They understood science, and observation and the experimental processes but had little idea about matters biological that could be pursued in the fresh air. [...]