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Discussion in 'Pacific Northwest Workshops and Events' started by Junglekeeper, May 3, 2017.
It's forever this time: Vote for City of Vancouver official bird
Well, I'd say it's pertinent to a botany forum based in British Columbia. I love woodpeckers, Flickers in particular, but a lot of folks engaged in various aspects and avocations of botany would prefer something friendlier and prettier. I've never been dive bombed by a hummingbird out in the woods and fields.
I'm curious about what the Vancouverites have to say.
I think most people are not aware of this event as it is not advertised or promoted. These birds are not those that I usually see in my area, though I'm sure I've seen them at one time or another. It's difficult to decide; there isn't one that stands out.
A friend from Seattle was just telling me how a flicker had made a big hole in a window frame on his house, causing a fair bit of damage--and of course a flicker pounding on one's metal chimney vent is a rather annoying wake up call. Not sure about that candidate. They are beautiful and interesting to observe though.
OK, I won't vote for that one, then. The Birder's Guide to Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, by Nature Vancouver (Harbour Publishing, 2016), has an Anna's Hummingbird on the cover. I would hardly be considered a birder, but I like that book a lot, organized by parks (with descriptions and directions) and which birds frequent them. I just noticed the cover again last night, thought it would be cool if it turns out Nature Vancouver featured the official city bird. [Edited - voted; how else will I remember that]
Just based on each bird's one-line description from the article, perhaps the spotted towhee would best represent Vancouver - "peaceful but sociable" - though the varied thrush's "mellow and contemplative" wouldn't be bad either.
The following letter appeared in the May 6, 2017 edition of The Vancouver Sun:
Anna's hummingbird named Vancouver's permanent city bird
Seems like it was fixed ;)
Why do you say that? 8,259 people voted.
Because previous years' chosen birds didn't have a chance in the competition, crows for one.
Maybe it's all about tourism and advertising, just saying.
The air was so polluted here, a few years back, no birds were seen for about 7-10 days. Some hummingbirds were noticed on the ground dead.
The birds came back after the air cleared up.
The article did say that it's about tourism and advertising:
I see, thanks, guess I should have read the article.
I question how useful it is for the city to have an official bird. Most people don't even know of its existence. The number of people who voted is insignificant considering Vancouver has a population of some 630,000. It will be interesting to see if and how it will be used by interested parties.
There's nothing like a contest to bring out the haters, it seems. The following letter appeared in the May 23, 2017 edition of The Vancouver Sun:
I'd say jokers, not haters - just a clever humerous remark, nothing hateful in it!
Hummingbirds don't exactly have the best reputation--"fiercely territorial" is a bit of a euphemism.
The official bird of Vancouver title went to Anna's Hummingbird. That saved the city embarrassment from headlines like this (from another city, though, in the BC interior):
Woodpeckers perform havoc-wreaking encore at Okanagan arts centre
Here is the beginning of the article.
VERNON, B.C. – Some woodpeckers in British Columbia appear to have a taste for the arts, but their efforts to make a local theatre their home are not winning rave reviews.
The birds are northern flickers, a medium-sized, brown-spotted woodpecker common across North America.
They have been pecking holes in the side of the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre in the North Okanagan city of Vernon in an effort to break through the siding and stucco to reach the insulation beneath, where they create a burrow-like nest inside.
Not only are the holes unsightly, but they also expose the building to potential moisture damage, said Tannis Nelson, spokeswoman for the North Okanagan Regional District.