Tag Archives: Soundscapes

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.  

Continue reading Birds are smarter than you think

The Quadra Project: Sounds of the Earth

On August 20, 1977, Voyager 2 was launched from NASA’s facility in Cape Canaveral, Florida. And exactly 15 days later, on September 5, 1977, Voyager 1 was launched from the same facility. The timing was crucial because astronomical calculations had placed Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune in a lineal alignment that would only occur once every 176 years. With this alignment, each planet could accelerate the two spacecrafts to their next destination, reducing the travel time from 30 years to 12 years.

Continue reading The Quadra Project: Sounds of the Earth

Scientists eavesdropping on fish to fathom their underwater secrets

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

New technology is allowing researchers to covertly monitor, record and identify the sounds fish make underwater to try to unravel their deepest secrets. 

Researcher Xavier Mouy, a recent PhD graduate at the University of Victoria, and his colleagues have devised a relatively low-cost portable audio-visual system that surreptitiously records the surprising range of acoustics fish produce, but more importantly, pinpoints what creature makes which sound. 

Continue reading Scientists eavesdropping on fish to fathom their underwater secrets

Earth Day 2023: Wild Cortes Displays (P 1 – the Mother Tree)

Wild Cortes celebrated Earth Day, on Saturday April 22, with the opening of the new Mother Tree Exhibit. One of the advantages of being among the first to arrive, is that the facility was not too crowded. There were only half a dozen people when Wild Cortes opened at noon. Local biologist Sabina Leader-Mense agreed to give Cortes Currents a walk through.

She was making some last minute touches to the exhibit when I asked some of the first viewers, ‘What’s your impression of the exhibit?’  

Continue reading Earth Day 2023: Wild Cortes Displays (P 1 – the Mother Tree)

Provincial Biologist visits Cortes Island; Second Western Screech Owl discovered

A provincial biologist visited Cortes Island over the weekend. Emily Upham-Mills is an ecosystems biologist with the Ministry of Water, Lands and Natural Resource Stewardship and an important member of the team working with the Friends of Cortes Island (FOCI) on the Western Screech Owl Project

Helen Hall, Executive Director of FOCI, explained, “Emily very kindly came up on the weekend to talk to the community. This project is really important for FOCI. We’re doing really interesting scientific work and that data is going back both provincially and federally. It puts us in the spotlight with this particular species. It’s a project that’s running for three years. We’re in the second year of trying to discover whether there are Western Screech Owls on Cortes Island.” 

Continue reading Provincial Biologist visits Cortes Island; Second Western Screech Owl discovered