The Gray Jay, one of the many species that is in the running for Canada's National Bird. Photo by Marianne Balkwill
Hi, it's been a while since I've posted on this blog (over seven months now). The truth is I haven't been out much this past year. During the summer and early fall months Aaron and I have been working on our nearly 3 acre farm, trying to turn it into something of our own which is a lot of fun, and at times a lot of hard work. We also went to Quetico Provincial Park for two weeks back in September and paddled/portaged the Hunter Island Loop, a 300+ kilometre loop that, so far, has been our best route yet!
We've done a few backcountry trips now since we've been married, and since I don't have a facebook page to share photos with family and friends, I've taken notes and photos from the trips and slowly posting them on my other blog:
Birding wise for me around here has been kinda slow. We've had two Snowy Owls hanging out just north of the house this winter, and after work last week I raced to Sombra to see the Barrow's Goldeneye from the cozy home of the Bowman's. I've been hoping for something rare to show up at my bird feeder this winter as we work on the inside of the house on the weekends, but so far the best bird has been a White-crowned Sparrow that is still hanging around.
Yesterday in the news (Globe & Mail) I noticed that the Canadian Geographic Society has a system set up for the public to vote for Canada's National Bird. I knew we had birds representing each province and territory, which honestly I thought was good enough, but I guess by 2017 we will have a national bird as well. Click on the link below to see the candidates:
Not surprisingly, Common Loon is in the lead, a bird many people recognize as it appears on our 1 dollar coin (the loonie) and formerly on the $20.00 bill. Not only that, a heavy majority of the Canadian population lives in southern Ontario, so this is a species many people have either seen or heard wailing on the lake at their cottage or campsite, and earning it as a symbol representing "The Northern Wilderness". This bird is also the provincial bird for Ontario.
I honestly think our national bird should be a Boreal species myself, perhaps the Gray Jay (and then get it changed back to Canada Jay. HA!)
What bird do you think deserves the title as "Canada's National Bird" ? (I'm afraid a guy wearing a hockey jersey, while drinking beer and flipping the bird doesn't count.)
Whatever wins it will be able to stand along side the beaver and the maple leaf on the pedestal of Canadian national symbols, while below them sits the provincial/territorial species of birds, mammals, flowers, trees, and......minerals? Does all this seem a little excessive or is it just me?