Birds abundant in the region

Birds abundant in region
Darren Handschuh - Jan 4, 2017

Birds of a feather are flocking to the Okanagan, even in the middle of winter.

Peter Blokker, Christmas Bird Count co-ordinator for North Okanagan, said about 20,000 birds from 92 species were spotted on Dec. 18.

Ducks were the most common bird spotted, with 3,749 mallards being documented.

Some of the less-common sightings included 11 wild turkeys in the Commonage area, six golden eagles, one peregrine falcon at the Coldstream ranch, six great horned owls, one northern pygmy owl and a variety of other rare birds.

On Jan. 15, bird lovers will once again be heading to the great outdoors for the annual swan and eagle count.

The swan and eagle count is a citizen science program that takes place mid-January each year and monitors the current population status of these birds in southern interior British Columbia.

The North Okanagan count zone covers from Sicamous to the south end of Mabel Lake via Lavington and Lumby as well as Enderby through Kingfisher and to Mabel Lake.

In the Vernon area, several groups scout the north and south end of Kalamalka Lake, Vernon Arm of Okanagan Lake and the Head of the Lake area.

The count numbers are compiled with others from the B.C. Interior and elsewhere and form a database used by university students and graduate ornithologists in various bird research programs.

Anyone interested in taking part in the annual count can contact Aaron Deans, swan and eagle count co-ordinator by email at or by calling 250-542-5122.