Saturday, September 29, 2012

Iona Island Bird Observation

After dropping Louise & Tom at YVR to fly to Boston George & I went for a walk on Iona Island. We took a known path & an unknown one.
On the unknown path were mist nets for catching birds on the wing.
We saw one trapped.
I wondered how long it would be left there.
[At most 1/2 hour]
Further along the path a girl scout group was walking the other way.
They had heard a talk.

And suddenly in a blackberry clearing there was a table with two people sitting at it.
There were other people hanging around too-- the bird collectors!
At the table they were processing a netted birds.
Naming them, checking the fat on their breast by blowing on their chest feathers.
You can see the yellow fat under the skin!
Their wings were measured in millimeters.
They were sexed.
That was done by looking at their feathers mostly.
Then they were weighed & released.
Meanwhile the second person at the table would be entering all the data into the computer.
Soon they would be going on to Mexico!

Last week they had had many Cedar Waxwings.
Today it was Audubon & Yellow-Rumped Warblers, one Song Sparrow & a Yellow Warbler & an Orange-Crowned Warbler.
There were a few unknowns, maybe as a result of cross-breeding.

The birds wait in bags till they get processed.

Usually they process 100 birds a day, 3 weekend days.
Last weekend they were mobbed with 300 birds a day and they couldn't process them all.
Wind & rain can interfere with that schedule.
The workers run for 6 hours after sun up.

Above is the wing measurement tool.
Below the examining of the brightness of the tail feathers to sex the bird. 

Opening the wing helps to judge the age of the bird. 
We mostly saw first year birds.

The banding pliers were so clever!
You couldn't over tighten the ring & hurt the bird.

Guide book for looking at the skull as another way of telling the bird's age if plumage is vague.

I was making immediate plans to bring Lesley, Max & Reed to see this next weekend [if I'm not in Maui!].

Below is the bird in a tube, head down for weighing. 
You can see the black-with-white-spots tail feathers!
After that's done the orange cap is taken off & they fly off.

What a great discovery!
Going to Costco after that made a strange contrast.

As for the black box below... I have no idea!
That's it for now.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

September 16 Family wedding

Jonathan Trivett, who is Tim Trivett & Lynn Westwick's son married Jazzy Lei Zhang.

 mother of Jonathan & the mother of Jazzy.

Jazzy's parents, Shu Zeng & Ming Xia Huo, came from China for the wedding.

We had other visitors from afar.
 This is Chuan Khoo. He came from Folkstone, England. He & Tim share parents & only met each other in the last 10 years or so. Neither knew of the other's existence till Tim found his birth mother in Penang.

The couple, a couple of days before the wedding.

 Other wedding guests...

half sisters, Isabelle & Lynn

Not all perfect photos, but it was a lovely party on a beautiful day with wonderful friends & family.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Light / shadow / dark

Our apartment which faces northwest [ remind me to THINK about that next time! ] is gradually less&less light.

We are noticing it.

The playground next to us has been re-built & reconfigured. The new clientele is quieter & younger. I wonder if the Parks Board knew this when they rethought the space. They might have, but not necessarily. But actually we are happy with the change. Less screaming from terrible-two-temper-tantrums. Would that be TTTT?

George & I are on a diet & he's lost way more than I, & we are working out in the gym more as well. He's lost 20, I've lost 8. I'm told women loose with greater difficulty.

So I am going to flash many shadow pictures from the last 3 years. We've been in this apartment 3 years. MUCH has happened.

Some shadows rare very mysterious = hard to figure out.

I guess that's what I love about this one.

Very abstract.

I have no memory of how this was made.

There's a piece of my photo-shadow in there.

 The one above has pin-hole camera effect. Notice all those curved quarters...

Through the slats of our blinds....


Mystery again, except for my picture-taking shadow.

That's it for now.