A Brown Shrike, commonly found in East Asia, was spotted at Rocky Point Bird Observatory in Metchosin. (Photo by Joachim Bertrands)

Asian bird spotted in Metchosin only the second ever found in Canada

The last time the same bird was seen in Nova Scotia back in 1997

Here today, gone tomorrow.

A brown shrike, a bird usually found in East Asia, was spotted by a group of volunteer bird banders in Metchosin on Tuesday, Oct. 1.

“I just started yelling for a minute or so,” says Joachim Bertrands, a Simon Fraser University biology student. “We’re all pretty obsessed with birds, so to realize that a bird made it so far is a pure rush of adrenaline for me.”

RELATED: White raven appears in Coombs

This is the first spotting of a brown shrike in British Columbia and the second spotting in Canada. The last time the same bird was seen in Nova Scotia back in 1997. 

Bertrands is part of a volunteer group that captures and releases migratory birds. He credits his co-volunteers, Siobhan Darlington, Ian Cruikshank, and David Bell, for helping with the banding process.

They spotted the rare find in Rocky Point Bird Observatory, located within a DND military base that’s off-limits to the public.

The banding process is simple. Volunteers will place a small band on the bird’s leg so future banders will know where it was spotted previously. Additionally, they quickly take key measurements, such as the wingspan and tail length. They also weigh, age, and sex them.

But what has caused this rare sighting? Something called ‘reverse migration’.

“Sometimes these birds have minor errors in their migration instinct,” says Bertrands.

“Strong winds may be responsible for pushing birds away from their route, especially when they are young. They become lost and then end up on another continent.”

RELATED: B.C. man drives all night to get photo of rare duck

aaron.guillen@goldstreamgazette.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Just Posted

Langford ranks as fastest growing community in B.C.

Westshore community grew by 5.2 per cent in 2019 compared to 2018

Earthquake on top of highway closure a wake-up call for Island’s West Coast

“When someone says, ‘Be prepared for 72 hours,’ that means exactly that: be prepared.”

Dozen Metchosin ‘barn cats’ on the hunt for new homes

Broken Promises Animal Rescue hoping to re-home feral cats

EDITORIAL: Education responds to the future

B.C.’s education system has had a rough ride in the press. In… Continue reading

VIDEO: James Bay wolf released into wild of western Vancouver Island

Conservation officers confirm wolf is from Discovery Island

B.C. reports first coronavirus in Vancouver region

First patient visited Wuhan, China, reported symptoms

Opioid crisis to blame for shorter life expectancy in B.C. men, says Stats Can

Opioid crisis held responsible for declining life expectancy

Oak Bay man refuses to stop drinking beer, gets $230 ticket

‘An expensive lesson,’ says Deputy Chief

Supreme Court bans Victoria man from practising law

Jeremy Maddock received a law degree in 2016 but never completed articling

Province’s oldest lawyer shares advice for living well at her 100th birthday party

Firefighters bring Constance Isherwood a cake with 100 birthday candles

Pregnant B.C. woman stuck in Wuhan, the epicentre of coronavirus outbreak

Woman is due to give birth in Wuhan, China unless she can get out

Taxi association asks B.C. Supreme Court to stop Uber, Lyft from operating

Petition alleges Passenger Transportation Board did not take taxis into account

Majority of Canadian boards had no female members in 2016 and 2017: StatCan

Statistics Canada says 18.1 per cent of director seats were held by women in 2017

Most Read