A Spring Celebration of Nature

The 2018 Brant Wildlife Festival took place from March 19 to April 28. Thanks to the many volunteers and organizations that helped with the Brant Wildlife Festival on Vancouver Island.

The festival celebrated nature, particularly the amazing migration of Brant geese as they rest and feed on the shores of Parksville and Qualicum Beach. Events ranged from wildlife viewing to learning how to identify birds as well as kids nature camps and a bioblitz. The festival was made possible by volunteer tour leaders, especially the Arrowsmith Naturalists, Friends of French Creek, Pacific Rainforest Adventure Tours, Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Region Research Institute, Qualicum Beach Streamkeepers, and VIU Deep Bay Marine Field Station.

Brant count update:

Dedicated members of the Arrowsmith Naturalists are doing counts of Brant in the Parksville-Qualicum Beach Wildlife Management Area each week during the Brant Wildlife Festival.

On April 17, they saw a total of 2,285 Brant in 1 hour and 40 minutes.

Two groups covered the Parksville-Qualicum Beach Wildlife Management Area and had good weather and a very low tide for the last full length Brant Count. Warm weather activities are on the increase such as people walking on the beach, flying kites and kayaking. We saw scattered dabblers,  Bufflehead and Goldeneye; small Scoter flocks moving up and down the Strait; 10 Great Blue Herons;  Black-bellied Plovers,  Red-necked & Horned Grebes were all in breeding plumage; gulls were few, most were Bonaparte’s.  Bird numbers are down, hundreds overall, compared to thousands a month ago. Brant were mostly feeding at the waterline, well away from human activity.

Conditions: Windy with a slight chop on the water, good visibility, partly cloudy skies.