I was able to find the Swamp Sparrow this morning at the Great Blue Heron Nature Reserve. Beauftiful bird! It was just east of the bridge on Salwien Loop Trail nearest the road. Great find Bruce and Joanne and great work picking this rare LBJ (little brown job) out of all the other regular LBJ's!
Also of note in the same area were two White-throated Sparrows; a juvenile and a tan morph adult. Actually it was quite busy for sparrows as there were also White and Golden-crowned, Lincoln, Song and a Fox Sparrow there. Seven sparrow species is pretty neat!
A photo of the Swamp Sparrow but not nearly as nice as the stunning ones Bruce and Joanne got yesterday!
Gord Fraser Valley Birding Administrator eBird Regional Editor (Fraser Valley)
I had a bit of time late this afternoon so I went to look for the Swamp Sparrow but was not successful. I spent over an hour at the bridge and had at least 5 Song Sparrows, 2 Lincoln's Sparrows, an adult and 2 immature Golden-crowned Sparrows, a Spotted Towhee and several Dark-eyed Juncos, but no other sparrows.
I did see a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, which is not on the October list.
A volunteer at the centre said the Swamp Sparrow had not been seen yesterday or today, so they must not be aware of your sighting yesterday, Gord.
Most winters a Swamp Sparrow hangs around Reifel sanctuary in Ladner, but is very difficult to see, so maybe this one is still here and will occasionally be seen. More likely it has refueled and continued its migration.
Stan Olson Abbotsford
Last Edit: Oct 12, 2008 18:31:25 GMT -8 by Deleted
Glad you saw the Swamp Sparrow Gord; We didn't see it today but there were a lot of people wandering the paths so it could have been in hiding. We will keep an eye out for it next week! Good identification photo!
I confess that the Swamp Sparrow in the photos posted by Bruce and Joanne a while back left me wondering a bit, so I emailed a couple of Manitoba birders who have lots of experience with this species. After some initial hesitation, the replies confirm that this was undoubtedly a first winter Swamp Sparrow, a bit different in appearance from the adult plumaged birds they are used to seeing in the summer.
It's nice to have this confirmation, and it would be nice to think it might still be around, but I guess the chances are slim. However, if no one looks for it we will never know. So it's great that people like Bill are going back to check now and then.