Have you ever been out in nature and had the experience of seeing a beautiful creature in their natural surroundings? It almost takes your breath away, especially if it is a bird or animal that is rarely seen or hard to find. Whether you are a seasoned bird watcher, budding photographer or just an outdoors lover at heart, the bird watching expeditions at the Cowichan Estuary Nature Center are something worth checking out this fall.
The Cowichan Estuary Nature Center in Cowichan Bay on Vancouver Island is a very special place. At its core it is a magnificent interpretive center that offers visitors the chance to learn about the estuary, marine life and natural history. There is an incredible aquarium and touch tank where you can see and touch marine creatures with your own two hands. For an in-depth look at some of the beautiful birds that inhabit this area, you need to take part in one the centre’s bird watching adventures. Once each month, teams of volunteers participate in the Bird Studies Canada Coastal Waterbird Survey. While it sounds rather scientific, anyone is allowed to join in with these experts as they spot, identify, and count waterbirds along the Cowichan Bay shoreline.
Those who lead the survey are very experienced and knowledgeable. You can work on your bird-spotting skills and learn some great information about the ones you see along the way. Be sure to dress for the weather and don’t forget your binoculars! The next outing is coming up October 12, 2014 at 9:00am. Some of the birds already spotted this year include Great Blue Heron, Trumpeter Swan, Hooded Merganser, Bald Eagle, Red-tailed Hawk, Belted Kingfisher, Purple Martin, and Bufflehead. You may want to bring a little notepad to take notes on the ones that you get to see!
The fall is a fantastic time to visit and The Prancing Horse Retreat is a magnificent bed and breakfast tucked up in the hills on Malahat Mountain. Imagine coming back to your own private suite after a day of bird watching and enjoying coffee on your deck, a walk through nearby wooded trails, reading your favorite book by the fireplace or just taking deep breaths as you relax with the Olympic Mountains in your sights. It is a magical place and we would love to have you stay with us! You can in fact do your own bird watching right from our property! Guests have seen bald eagles and beautiful hummingbirds. For reservation information you can contact us at (250) 743-9378.