Saturday, November 23, 2013

Turkey Vulture

The Turkey Vulture (Scientific name - Cathartes aura) is found throughout the U.S.A., as far South as Mexico and into Southern Canada.  These birds have a good sense of smell which they follow to locate carcasses of dead animals. They have long wings and can be seen soaring over areas of potential food. They have brownish back and wings, black underparts, a long tail and a small red head with naked skin around the eye.  Top photo taken in March 2014 in Abbotsford, B.C. Bottom photo taken in 2011 near Miami, Florida.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Cooper's Hawk

The Cooper's Hawk (Scientific name - Accipiter cooperii) is a medium sized woodland hawk that is capable of maneuvering quickly through fairly dense vegetation. It feeds mainly on small birds and is sometimes found near bird feeders. It also feeds on small animals such as chipmunks and small squirrels.  

 The Cooper's Hawk is found in the Southern parts of Canada and as far South as Mexico. 

The Cooper's Hawk has greyish blue upper parts and a darker crown and red eyes. The tail is rounded and has bands of white at the tip. While they look similar to the Sharp Shinned Hawk, the Sharp Shinned Hawk is smaller and the tip of the tail is not rounded. 

Top two photos were taken in November 2013 in Abbotsford, B.C.  Bottom photo taken in Abbotsford, B.C. in December 2014.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Lesser Scaup

The Lesser Scaup (Scientific name - Aythya affinis) is the most common diving duck that is found in North America. They breed from Alaska across to Eastern Canada and winter as far South as the Caribbean and Northern South America.  The majority winter on the coastlines, but some winter on reservoirs and lake further inland.

The males have a purple-green gloss to their heads and pale flanks. The females are duller in colour and have a white patch around the base of their bill.  They are very similar to the Greater Scaup.

Photos all taken at Mill Lake in Abbotsford, B.C. in 2011 and 2013.