There are a number of reasons why I decided to take on this project. My first reason has to do with my interest in birds. This began shortly after moving to Victoria ten and a half years ago. With our house backing onto a wooded area, the chirping of birds is a familiar sound all year long. I often glance out the window to see birds of all forms in the yard throughout the day. Frequently I will pull out the Birds of Victoria or Birds of North America reference guides we have on hand. Unfortunately, the drawings in the first aren’t overly helpful for identification and the number of entries in the second is overwhelming. My second reason has to do with a photography course I took a number of years ago. Since that time I have been trying to think of a practical reason to buy a new camera. Taking pictures of birds requires a powerful zoom lens which my previous point-and-shoot camera could not accommodate. Perfect! My final reason was my desire to take on a new project to welcome in 2011. Hence, bird of the day was born.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Bucephala albeola

Small diving duck
Small gray bill
  • White 'scarf' around black head
  • Black back and neck
  • White breast, belly and flanks
  • Inner wing white / outer wing black
  • Brown head and upperparts
  • Grayish-white underparts
  • White ear-spot and wing-patch

Listen to its call.

My bird watching today took me to King's Pond near Cedar Hill Golf Course. A large number of ducks of various types greeted me upon my arrival. They are obviously fed by visitors quite frequently. Every time a car pulled up, the ducks would rush over in expectation of a snack. A couple of times, I feared I would be flattened by stampeding waterfowl. In the end, I escaped unscathed except for a suspicious looking substance on my jeans (again).  Although the picture of the female was taken a few weeks ago near the Oak Bay Marina, I took the photo of the male today at the pond.

Learn more about the Bufflehead.

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