DCA lands are vibrant in spring with both colourful singers and flowering plants.
The neotropical migrant Orange-crowned warblers travel up the coast from wintering homes in the southern USA and Mexico just to have a nest home here on Denman! The brushy woodland edges are their habitats, but the guys still get up on the tops of young trees to sing their trilling territorial song.
American goldfinches are rare in winter in the Comox Valley (thank you Mike for checking the Valley’s up-dated checklist) but they are becoming more common on Denman, establishing spring breeding territories in open woodlands. Here the goldfinch was feasting on alder seeds from the old cones.
The Gummy gooseberry Ribes lobbii is a colourful shrub with sticky leaves and berries that thrives in open Denman meadows and forest openings, attracting bees and butterflies.
The first butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies are out and about on Denman. DCA’s butterfly reserve already has Western elfin and gray hairstreak butterflies, as well as American emerald dragonflies and Swift forktail damselflies.
These butterflies (Western elfin) use salal for their lifecycle and so are in open salal forests.
Swift forktail, the largest of our small forktails, starts flying early in the season.
This relatively small dark but shiney-metallic dragonfly flies early and is seen in open forests and meadows near our peaty marshes.