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Chehalis River Hatchery

Chehalis River + Eagle Point
On August 29th I took a brief trip up the Lougheed Highway from my home in Pitt Meadows to look around the Chehalis River Fish Hatchery where we'll be putting an underwater camera for the upcoming salmon spawning season. The camera is part of our Chehalis Estuary project where we'll be watching eagles and other wildlife as they go after the spawning and dead salmon through the late Fall and early Winter months.Chehalis Fish Hatchery - channel that salmon spawn up Our camera will be seeing the same thing that visitors to the hatchery see when they walk across the bridge shown in the photo to the right. Thanks to Bob Chappel for his wizardry in creating the waterproof housing for this camera. He has tested it in 50 feet of water and it passed with flying colors.

We'll be putting our camera in this location toward the end of September. Please watch for it. Thanks also go to Shaw Cable who are providing us and the hatchery network access and bandwidth for this camera.

You can take a look at other photos of the facililty and its information kiosks in our Media Gallery.
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Annual Slaughter of Migrating Waders on Barbados

Wildlife NewsA small minority of Barbadians are responsible for shooting up to 45,000
migrating waders (shorebirds) every year between August and November in
Barbados, West Indies. These birds breed in North America, sometimes as far North as the Arctic, and then migrate South to spend the winter in Latin America. En route they fly over Barbados.

The slaughter on Barbados is highly organized and takes place in a number of shallow, man-made lakes, which are made attractive to exhausted migrating waders. The lakes have up to 4 acres of open water with specially built mud banks within range of the shooting hut. Caged birds (maimed from last years' shoot) are placed close to the mud banks and the hunters use whistles to imitate the bird calls, which are supplemented by amplified recording calls to attract entire flocks. Decoys are also used.
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Fledge Fest a Success! Skye has Fledged

Wildlife NewsOn July 12, 2007, about 30 of us gathered on the road beside the field where the Sidney cameras are. It was time for the eaglet, now named Skye, to become a Fledgling by taking its first flight.

Please visit the Sidney BC Bald Eagle Nest topic in our Discussion forum for pictures and lots of observations on this historic event.
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2007 Winding Down - Looking Forward to 2008 as the cycle continues

Wildlife NewsSkye fledged this past week and is spending less and less time in the Sidney nest. The eagle cam season is winding down for 2007 but don't go away, there are lots of things still ongoing and more to come.

The whole "Story of the River" cycle includes fish, bears, orcas and of course eagles - as well as a host of other species and concerns that together depict the cycle of nature in and around the rivers of the world. These are the lifeblood of the continents and it is our intention to bring you to an understanding of the cycle of this lifeblood through our cameras and other aspects of Hancock Wildlife Foundation. We're only just getting started. Come on along with us on this exciting adventure.

David and I have been talking quite a bit over the past weeks about a number of things, not the least of which is our need to get cameras into nests and do maintenance on the ones already there during the brief period when the eagles are gone. Much of this will depend on your donations, personal as well as corporate, and on other things in the works, but I expect that it will be a mad dash to do as much as possible with what we have for now.

In the mean time, despite the current network problem I feel confident that we'll be bringing you a full season of salmon spawning and eagle feeding in the Goldstream Estuary. Bob Chappell and Darren Copley have been working to get the underwater camera back online on the intertidal channel. In the mean time the bats will be back in the attic and with the infrared lights there those of you outside North America in timezones that are awake while the rest of us are asleep will be treated to their antics at night here.

We're also working hard to get similar cameras into a river near Vancouver where literally thousands of eagles feed in the late Fall and early Winter. By the time they start to tail off in Febrary, it will again be time to watch our birds nest-build in the nests for the new season. Bob and Darren were testing the new camera in 50' of water at the Goldstream Marina last week - passed with flying colors.

Read on for details...
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Ospreys have "moved on"

Esquimalt Osprey Nest CamerasFollowing is a message from the Esquimalt staff:

Employees at the Esquimalt Graving Dock were hopeful this season that with the return of a pair of Osprey at the nest at the Dock, we'd have another successful season of observing the pair as they nest, breed and have another young.  We watched as they seemed to take to their old nest, built it up (as you may have seen from the footage, they dragged almost anything they could find from the facility up there-rope, rags, gloves, etc.).  They seemed to be quite happy.  We observed them fishing, eating their catch on one of the cranes on site, communicating with one another (including obvious signs of breeding) and fighting for their territory with another pair.  We were hopeful they would stay, and were excited about having this pair spotlighted through the Hancock website.  They are such fascinating birds!  Unfortunately it's appears that they pair has moved on.  There has been no regular sighting of them in "our" nest for a couple of weeks now.  It looks like we won't be able to watch in awe as they raise another young onsite this year, but we're hopeful a pair will return next year, and plan to work with the Hancock crew to have the camera back up and running next year.

We've also been keeping an eye on the activity of Osprey in the area, including a watchful eye on an always active nest just up the road (there has been a pair with young during the past 6 years I've been watching it).  But this year, there is no pair, and very odd behaviour from the Osprey spotted in the area.

Perhaps 2007 just wasn't the year for these birds in this area.  Till next year...

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