Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Iona Sewage Ponds and South Jetty Sept. 1 2014

The title doesn't sound very inviting but during migration periods this area is a fabulous place to bird. The sewage plant processes the effluent for Vancouver and vicinity.  The bugs in the settling ponds attract a myriad of birds. A manmade jetty contains a pipe which carries the treated effluent 2.5 miles out into the Salish Sea-a body of water separating Vancouver Island from the lower Mainland.  This jetty provides a rest area for many migrating birds.  The trick is to be there when the birds are there.  Reports of a Wandering Tattler sent us there today and we walked the 5 mile round trip to find it.  Biking is the best way to explore the jetty.
The route we took.

To enter the sewage lagoon area one must enter a security code and pass through a gate.
One of the setting ponds.
The mighty Fraser River enters the ocean beside the ponds.  The shores are lined with rafts of logs waiting to be hauled to mills or sent to foreign countries.
The perimeter of the ponds provides walking areas and the birds forage on the settling sewage remnants.
Pectoral Sandpipers love this stuff.  
Pectoral Sandpipers
A view from the ocean side looking towards the jetty.
The jetty provides a trail for all types of physical activity.  It is also directly under the approach to the Vancouver airport.
Airplanes are constantly coming and going from every corner of the globe.
Western Sandpipers are one of the species utilizing the jetty as a rest stop.
The tip of the jetty looking towards Vancouver Island.
A few Spotted Sandpipers were found along the jetty edge.
The end of the jetty.  As usual, if you want to find a rare bird look for the birders.
The Wandering Tattler.  It was almost at the tip of the jetty.  We met a few birders on our way up who were returning and they could not locate it.  Perhaps because it was just resting in a secluded spot.   Dian spotted it here in the seaweed.
It was finding some type of crustacean.
Perhaps a sea louse??

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