A look at the underwing of a Northern Saw-whet Owl under ultra-violet light. (Photo contributed)

Keeping track of feathered friends at the Rocky Point Bird Observatory

Early birds and night owls needed in Metchosin

Rick Stiebel/News staff

Whether you’re a morning person or prefer to spread your wings in the evening, the Rocky Point Bird Observatory has room for you in its flock of volunteers.

Songbird monitoring at Rocky Point Bird Observatory’s stations begins a half hour before sunrise from July 21 to Oct. 18, while keeping track of owl migration runs from mid-September to the end of October, said Ann Nightingale, “That’s why we’re always looking for volunteers,” she said. “Fortunately, our volunteer schedules can accommodate early birds and night owls.”

Volunteers with the organization have no trouble keeping busy, as evidenced by the 9,000 Northern Saw-Whet owls that have been banded at the RPBO station at Pedder Bay Marina since 20002. That total includes 1,850 last year in just six weeks, Nightingale added. Volunteers will be busy between Oct. 18 and Oct. 31 banding songbirds on any morning it doesn’t rain, Nightingale noted. Volunteers put in more than 7,000 hours a year, she added.

Other than a small grant from the Canadian Wildlife Service, Rocky Point Bird Observatory, which has been in operation since 1994, raises all of the funds required to conduct public educational programs and operational costs. “Like most non-profits, we’re always looking for support,” said Nightingale, who has served as a volunteer, board member and past president during the past 22 years.

Some of the other work RPBO undertakes each year involves monitoring temporary Stations at Witty’s Lagoon and Madrona Farm in Saanich each spring.

Anyone interested in visiting the Pedder Bay Station to see songbirds in the morning and owls in the evening should visits@rpbo.org. If you would like to volunteer or make a donation, go to volunteer@rpbo.org. The Rocky Point Station is on Department of National Defence land and is not open to the public. or volunteering should contact

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter



A closeup look at a Northern Saw-Whet Owl, one of thousands that have been banded at the Rocky Point Bird Observatory. (Pphoto contributed by Ann Nightingale)

Rocky Point Bird Observatory bander Siobhan Darlington with a Cooper’s Hawk. (Photo contributed by Ann Nightingale)

Just Posted

Saanich intersections rank as Island’s three worst

Intersection of Admirals Road, McKenzie Avenue, and the Trans-Canada Highway had the most crashes

Head-on collision on Prospect Lake Road shuts down road

Prospect Lake Road reopened to traffic at approximately 4:15 a.m. Tuesday

Saanich firefighters rescue bear cub stuck up a tree

Family Day was eventful for cub, firefighters

British Columbia is mellowing out when it comes to using cannabis

Nova Scotia smokes rest of Canada, with almost 22 per cent usage among individuals 15 years and up

Peninsula youth clinic experiencing growing demand

Clinic seeing rising mental and cyber-health referrals

Mermen calendar targets ‘toxic masculinity,’ raises big money for charities

Newfoundland and Labrador Beard and Moustache Club gave a cheque for more than $202,000 to Violence Prevention NL

West coast group campaigns for seal, sea lion harvest

‘Salmon are going the way of the buffalo unless we do something’

Minister says plans to fight poverty, climate change, focus of B.C. budget

The NDP said in its throne speech last week that affordability will be the hallmark of its initiatives

UPDATED: ‘Violent’ B.C. man back in custody after Alberta arrest

Prince George man with ties to Vernon was being sought by police

After a week away, SNC-Lavalin questions await MPs returning to Parliament

Two have resigned already: Jody Wilson-Raybould was veterans affairs minister and Gerald Butts was Trudeau’s principal secretary

Poverty coalition has high hopes for B.C. poverty reduction strategy

Funding allocation expected to be released with 2019 budget

‘How did we get here?’: B.C. mom of transplant recipient worries about measles outbreaks

Addison, 7, cannot get a live vaccine because she has a heart transplant

Chanel: Iconic couturier Karl Lagerfeld has died

He spent virtually his entire career at luxury labels catering to the very wealthy

Lost a ring? This B.C. man will find it for you

Chris Turner founded The Ring Finders, an international directory of metal detector hobbyists

Most Read