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Anne Elliott
Tree Swallow
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early summer
Don Stiles' Bluebird Route
to be banded
© Anne Elliott 2017
Bluebird Monitor for 38? years
SW of Calgary
29 June 2017

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Don Stiles' Bluebird & Tree Swallow route

Don Stiles' Bluebird & Tree Swallow route
This weekend is Canada's 150th birthday! Canada Day is tomorrow, 1 July 2017. Happy Birthday, Canada!!! Such a great country to live in and I am so thankful to be here and to have spent the last 39 years in Alberta. There will be celebrations all over the place and lots of people on the roads. Please drive carefully, everyone!

Yesterday evening, 29 June 2017, a rather large group of us met at 6:30 pm and went SW of the city with Don Stiles, who has been a dedicated Mountain Bluebird Monitor for something like 38 years! It was around 10:00 pm when I finally arrived home.

I'm adding a link to a CTV News article from 12 August 2015, about Don and his son, Andrew. Also a link to Andrew's birdhouse-building blog. Two great guys : )





This drive is an annual trip along Don’s Bluebird Route. We get the chance to see Mountain Bluebirds, Tree Swallows and Wrens nesting in various wooden nesting boxes along the country roads. Some boxes have eggs in the nest, others have tiny babies all packed tightly together. I managed to get a photo of a Bluebird nest with eggs in it, but, with so many people, it wasn't easy to see the various other boxes and get photos. I have seen them before on several other trips and have photos in my Mountain Bluebird album. This photo shows Don holding a Tree Swallow that he had banded.

Along the route, we saw a few other bird species, including beautiful American Goldfinches - one pair was hanging out on a fence down the road with a family of Bluebirds. I don't often see baby Bluebirds, so it was fun to see several in this family. The bright yellow of the male Goldfinch was so pretty with the spectacular blue of the male Bluebird. We also saw a Wilson's Snipe perched on a tall crag, a very distant Baltimore Oriole, Cedar Waxwings, to name just a few.

Many thanks, as always, Don, for letting us come along with you. It is an evening I look forward to every year, and I could tell how much everyone enjoyed themselves.

TigerHead has particularly liked this photo


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