Tag Archives: Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Birds are smarter than you think

Sandra Milligan has been teaching biology at North Island College, in Campbell River, for more than 20 years. She is an avid birder with deep roots in her local community. Someone from Sierra Quadra came to lecture she gave on bird intelligence, at ElderCollege in Campbell River, last fall. This led to Sierra Quadra inviting Milligan to speak at the Quadra Community Centre at 7:30  PM in Saturday, March 2. 

“Birds are incredibly intelligent, contrary to what science has believed in the past.  They understand what each other is thinking. One of my favourite topics, because I’m a bird watcher, (aka a bird listener) is to talk about bird communication and language. They can have hundreds (and thousands even) of different vocalizations and they really communicate in much more depth than science previously believed to be happening,” she explained.  

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The 2023 Christmas Bird Count

The Cortes Island Museum has been sponsoring two birding events every year for the past two decades.* 2,873 birds were seen during the 2023 Christmas Bird Count, but this number would have been much higher if there were more participants. 

“We can only go to a certain number of places where we know there will be birds, and that’s mostly along the coastline,” explained Laurel Bohart, a keen birder as well as co-curator of Wild Cortes.

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Cortes Island’s Spring 2022 Bird Count

A total of 92 species are listed in Cortes Island’s Spring 2022 Bird count. More than 20 birders participated, including local naturalist George Sirk who started the day off as a guide on board the Misty Isles. This year’s count was expanded to include Mitlenatch island, where Sirk served as a naturalist in 1969 and 71.

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