While Frodo might have been excited to see the eagles, the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation (VBPR) is excited to see the herons.
And that means the heron cam is back.
Each year a great blue heron colony becomes active around this time of year. They started returning Feb. 18, according to a release from the VBPR, and have become active enough that staff have turned on the heron cam once again.
“The heron cam provides a positive experience of a rare, local triumph—one of the only and largest urban heron colonies in North America—and offers a unique virtual opportunity to experience the colony remotely, especially important during COVID-19 times,” says Camil Dumont, park board chair, in the release.
The colony has 40 nests; last year about 155 fledglings were counted which was above the average of 126. In 2020 the first eggs were laid in late March.
Great blue herons, while not an uncommon sight around the province, are declining globally and listed as a species of special concern in B.C. There's hope that the cam will offer people a chance to learn about the huge birds.
The cam is an interactive experience; people can essentially line-up online to get to control it for a minute, choosing from the different viewing options.
The heron cam page also has information and footage from the different behaviours of the birds, including courtship, parenting and nest building.