Sandy Fairfield

Comox Valley sanctuary for swans

The Comox Valley provides a winter sanctuary for one of wildlife’s most elegant birds.

This goose was cared for and recently released by MARS back into the wild.

MARS: Snow geese population adapting and thriving

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This goose was cared for and recently released by MARS back into the wild.
Stellar Jay

MARS: Return of Stellar Jays sign of changing seasons

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Stellar Jay
Cougar sightings have spiked in the Comox Valley.

MARS moment: Tips to avoid a cougar conflict

Wildlife triggers a variety of emotions from awe and compassion to fear…

Cougar sightings have spiked in the Comox Valley.
Harbour seal

MARS: Seals find home around the Island

Seal pups are enchanting little mammals that are hard to ignore when…

Harbour seal
Kingfishers are not frequent visitors to MARS but last week one recent hatchling and this adult bird arrived.

MARS Moment: Kingfishers skilled fishers

It is quite easy to miss a solitary, motionless bird perched along a river bank, as it sits waiting for an unsuspecting fish to pass by

Kingfishers are not frequent visitors to MARS but last week one recent hatchling and this adult bird arrived.
baby barn owl

MARS Moment: Barn owls ‘fascinating’ birds

This species of owl is a unique family that has been dated from fossilized remains to be between 12 and 20 million years old

baby barn owl
Although raccoons may seem “warm and fuzzy

Don’t feed these nocturnal bandits

Adult raccoons can measure up to three feet in length and weigh in excess of thirty pounds...

Although raccoons may seem “warm and fuzzy
The pileated woodpecker is easily recognized by its distinct red head crest and is similar in size to a crow.

Pileated woodpecker ‘charming and comical’

Woodpeckers are very important 'keystone species' and critical to the safety and well being of many other wildlife species...

The pileated woodpecker is easily recognized by its distinct red head crest and is similar in size to a crow.
These ducklings were recently found on the Inland Island Highway; their mother had been trying to cross the highway but got stuck with her babies. Though she flew away during the commotion of the rescue

If you love them leave them alone, says MARS

Fluffy ducklings seem to be prone to human interference but this often results in babies being abandoned by the parents

These ducklings were recently found on the Inland Island Highway; their mother had been trying to cross the highway but got stuck with her babies. Though she flew away during the commotion of the rescue
North American robin babies grow at a rapid rate and have voracious appetites.

Robins first to rise, last to retire

Any day now M.A.R.S. expects the first of this year's baby robins to arrive at the centre

North American robin babies grow at a rapid rate and have voracious appetites.
Burrowing owls are unique amongst their species being the only owls that live underground.

Burrowing owls losing habitat

National Wildlife Week theme this year is to raise awareness to save the burrowing owl habitat through conservation efforts

Burrowing owls are unique amongst their species being the only owls that live underground.
Common merganser ducklings can swim as soon as they reach the water.

Mergansers year-round residents in Comox Valley

These diving ducks have a habitat that includes rivers, estuaries and sheltered shorelines; they can also be found in small lakes...

Common merganser ducklings can swim as soon as they reach the water.
Young birds often do not need the 'rescuing' humans think they do

What to do if you find a baby bird

Sadly many people still do not get the message and actually kidnap healthy babies that have been left hidden whilst the mother forages

Young birds often do not need the 'rescuing' humans think they do
Mother and baby finches carry on an animated conversation.

Tough time of year for wildlife

Some avian species are having a very tough time finding adequate food supplies, leading to starvation, emaciation and inter-species fighting

Mother and baby finches carry on an animated conversation.
The varied thrush stays around for the winter

Comox Valley saw all four seasons in past few weeks

Out on my daily walk, I was amazed at the number of birds that were busily trying to forage what little food they could find...

The varied thrush stays around for the winter
Sooty the owl did not perish recently but another local owl did after being spooked by a nearby man with a power washer. Sandy Fairfield of MARS pleads for us to be careful and respectful around wildlife.

Eagles ‘scavengers by nature’

We received numerous reports about one eagle that had been on the same beach for a week. It was reported as "looking" sick...

Sooty the owl did not perish recently but another local owl did after being spooked by a nearby man with a power washer. Sandy Fairfield of MARS pleads for us to be careful and respectful around wildlife.
Magnificent bald eagles will be celebrated next month in the ninth annual Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society Eagle Fest.

February month of love for eagles, too

Each year in February MARS holds a one-day festival to celebrate the magnificent bald eagles

Magnificent bald eagles will be celebrated next month in the ninth annual Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society Eagle Fest.
Small but hardy

Tiny tropical bird stays here all year

Sightings of Ana's hummingbirds first happened in Victoria in the winter of 1944

Small but hardy
Ruby-crowned kinglets are more secretive and solitary than their golden-crowned cousins.

Kinglets are species at risk

Kinglets are small hyperactive insectivore's part of the family of birds that includes the gnatcatchers and warblers...

Ruby-crowned kinglets are more secretive and solitary than their golden-crowned cousins.