Snowy Owls In Vancouver Delta Boundary Bay December 2011 6

Snowy Owls in Boundary Bay, Delta, British Columbia

This winter we are incredibly lucky to have a large number of Snowy Owls visiting right now in Delta.  Snowy Owls are normally found in the Arctic where their main meal is a small Arctic rodent, the lemming.  Due to a decline in the lemming population (which happens approximately every 4 years) the owls have migrated to locations like  Boundary Bay in Delta looking for food.

These magnificent birds are a beautiful sight to see, yet there are many warnings around that caution visitors so that the owls are protected.   Please, if you do go to see the owls, maintain a respectful distance from them.  If they start flying away, you have gone too close.  To ensure they are not disturbed view them only from the dyke (do not enter the marsh area), keep quiet, and don’t go as a large group or bring children or pets.  Stressing the owls will not only drive them away, but also threatens their survival.

That being said, seeing Snowy Owls and their habitat is a rare treat that anyone interested should get out and enjoy.  Bring binoculars, a telephoto lens and/or a spotting scope so you can get a good look at them from a distance.  For more information on the Snowies and where to find them, please check the updates at the end of this post.


For more information on Snowy Owls at Boundary Bay, please check out Anne Murray’s Nature Guides B.C. Blog.

According to Birding BC here is where the Snowies have been seen:

This has become a major SNOWY OWL flight year, with reports of up to 29
birds near the foot of 72nd Street on Boundary Bay, plus 5 or 6 more in the
Brunswick Point area of Delta. Birders and photographers are asked to
observe SNOWY OWL from a respectful distance, to make an effort not to
flush or frighten off the owls, and to speak to anyone who appears to be
crowding an owl too much.

News:

Global TV Report here.

CBC News Report here.

Update January 3, 2011

Reports are that there are still Snowy Owls in Boundary Bay, although numbers vary day by day.

About the Author : StephanieAn artistic gardener aiming to feed the body & soul through an urban potager garden & a community veggie plot in Vancouver.View all posts by Stephanie

  1. Susan Hemann
    Susan HemannDecember 11,11

    Thank you so much for sharing your pics of the owls. How wonderful!! They are amazing creatures!

  2. Leena K
    Leena KDecember 11,11

    Beautiful owls, like giant snowflakes.

  3. Kristin
    KristinDecember 11,11

    I love living in Delta with all the birds we have. There are so many owls around. Had one chase some joggers in front of our house a couple of weeks back. Poor hubby was putting out the trash around dusk, thought he was next as a target. Owl didn’t go after him until he walked to work a couple of days later. Heard the juveniles are learning to hunt now.

  4. Norma Chang
    Norma ChangDecember 14,11

    Lovely owl photos, thanks for sharing. How many hours were you out there waiting for the right moment?

  5. Stevie
    StevieDecember 14,11

    Norma, they are just all there resting so it was easy to get so many great photos. The challenge is to not disturb them. They are conserving their energy now and to upset them is to put them in danger.

  6. Cate McMillan
    Cate McMillanDecember 17,11

    We live in Delta and would like to venture out to see the owls. Could you tell me where in Boundary Bay we should go to view them? Thanks

  7. Stevie
    StevieDecember 17,11

    Cate, my photos were taken at the 72 Street entrance to Boundary Bay park.

    The reports have said that up to 29 birds have been seen near the foot of 72nd Street on Boundary Bay, plus 5 or 6 more in the Brunswick Point area of Delta.

    Hope you enjoy them!

  8. Todd
    ToddDecember 18,11

    how long are they expected to stay, will they be there next Saturday (Xmas eve)?

  9. Stevie
    StevieDecember 18,11

    Todd, my guess is yes, they should be there Christmas eve. I have heard that they will stay unless we get a cold snap but I’m not certain where I read / heard that.

  10. Nancy Klassen
    Nancy KlassenDecember 18,11

    Hello Nature Devotees,
    Does anyone else out there feel uncomfortable that it is open hunting season in the Boundary Bay fen just as we are fortunate to be witness to a unique migration of the Arctic Snowy Owl; a magnificent, habituating raptor that migrates over a 3000 km. flyway for a few short weeks?
    Cheers!
    Nancy
    cinidev@shaw.ca

  11. Gena
    GenaDecember 19,11

    Very good point Nancy
    I think hunting in Boundary Bay should be suspended.

  12. Stevie
    StevieDecember 19,11

    Interesting point, Nancy and thanks for weighing in, Gena.

    It was a bit jarring to hear all the gunshots while out visiting the owls, but the only hunting that I saw anywhere near the birds was with cameras.

    I didn’t feel the Snowies were in danger during my short visit, but I just don’t have the experience with hunting to add much to the conversation.

    I’m interested to hear others’ opinions on this issue.

  13. Heather
    HeatherJanuary 8,12

    I was out there today and easily saw over 20 snowy owls taking it easy. I didn’t notice many gunshots or anyone harassing the owls so that was good. I read on another forum that last time they were here (2005) they stayed until March so everyone should have plenty of time to get out and see them.

  14. Em
    EmJanuary 9,12

    Hello, I’d love to see the snowy owls – i have two questions which centre around their location as unfortunately I don’t have a car and want to know most accurately where they can be seen (although I realise they are mobile creatures!). I’m just wondering if anyone can confirm their location as being around the 64th & 72nd street area? It looks like there is a path that runs along there? Just curious as the park that was mentioned looks to me to be much further down around 12th ave? Also, is there a bus that runs reasonably close to their resting spot, does anyone know?

    Many thanks for your help!!!

  15. dustan
    dustanJanuary 21,12

    I went out to see the birds yesterday and they are still there a plenty. There video, images and a map to the location at the following link. http://www.mylifeinimages.com/2012/01/20/snowy-owls-on-a-snowy-day-in-boundary-bay/

  16. Tim
    TimFebruary 28,12

    Anyone seem any owls lately? My wife and I are headed up to this area on Sunday 2/4 to try and spot a few.
    Thanks,
    Tim

  17. Tim
    TimFebruary 29,12

    Oops, make that March 4th to see some owls.

    Thanks,
    Tim

  18. Stevie
    StevieMarch 4,12

    Tim, I saw photos of them taken on March 3rd so I can assume they are still there! Have fun and please report back if you see them on what’s happening at Boundary Bay. I’d love an update.

  19. Kathy
    KathyMarch 9,12

    Today is March 9. Are there still owls at Boundary Bay. I’m in Everett, Washington and it’s kind of a long drive, so I don’t want to make the trip if the owls have left.

  20. Diane stratton
    Diane strattonMarch 19,12

    March 19th today. Are there still snowy owls around for viewing at boundary bay bc?

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