Great Blue Herons can be seen in and around Stanley Park. These large majestic birds are endangered. Stanley Park has a signicant population of them. Their main nesting area is a tree stand literally steps from the high rises of the west end of the city of Vancouver. It is so close that in March 2015, the Vancouver Parks Board put a web cam on a neighbouring apartment building pointed at some trees with heron nests. You can now see herons born and raised in their nests. For 2016, the Vancouver Parks Board has installed a high definition camera so you can see the Herons in even greater detail. The Heron Cam is located at: Heron cam If you are visiting Stanley Park, be sure to look for these beautiful birds!
The Great Blue Herons were first noted in Stanley Park in 1921 when they nested near Brockton Point. They have had various nesting sites over the years, typically moving sites about every 20 years.
Great Blue Herons have a wingspan of about 167cm to 201cm.
The Great Blue Herons normally arrive at their nesting area around March each year. In April is a period of courtship among the herons. May is characterized by egg laying and incubation. By June, they are rearing their chicks. In July, the fledglings are starting to fly. The trees in the stand are protected with a metal band around them (see photo below) to prevent predators such as racoons from climbing the trees. Eagles are predators of the herons and do kill some. The herons have found that massing in the area of a few eagles has a lower casualty rate then spreading out to the territories of many eagles.
The Great Blue Herons can be seen all around Stanley Park, in Lost Lagoon, and at their nesting area near the Vancouver Parks Board Office and the Tennis Courts near the Beach Avenue entrance to Stanley Park. You can frequently see the Great Blue Heron from English Bay Beach to Second Beach at the Duck Pond area, and also at Lost Lagoon.
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