Monday, June 12, 2006


Wildlife on Vancouver Island: Fish

Vancouver Island holds out great potential for encouters with wildlife. Bird species abound, and the marine life is reputedly splendid. A beach just two miles from our inn is supposed to be a veritable playground for whales, for example.

When we arrived at the Fossil Bay Resort, no sooner did we step outside our car than a bald eagle flew overhead.

I didn't get a picture of the bald eagle, but here's the parking lot it flew over.
The little break in the massive hedge goes to our cottage.

"That's really good luck!" said B.

We were certainly lucky in our choice of a sight-unseen accommodation, tucked away on a bluff overlooking the Juan de Fuca straight.


Above and below left: views from our deck. Below right: from the kitchen table.

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The sundeck, with its own hot tub, was completely private to the point where we could choose to tango while buck naked and be seen only by the ---


--- sea otters! There was a sea otter sunbathing on its back in the water just a stone's throw from our deck! What natural bounty!

Closer inspection proved that it was only some kelp in the shape of a sea otter sunbathing on its back. But still, an auspicious sign.

Well, maybe auspicious is the wrong word. It certainly turned out to be a good predictor of our marine wildlife viewing experience over the next few days. Yet, with our expectations appropriately scaled down, there was plenty to look at.

Left: a limpet. Right: some barnacles.

There were various inert creatures hanging out in the tidepools, several pieces of dead crab, and tons of driftwood -- literally. One piece looked like a beached whale, if you stood well back and sort of squinted. And there were several banana slugs, which are kind of fishy.

Beached whale driftwood.


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Above: tide pools and mussel bed. Below: banana slug on a bed of greens.


Pretty good stuff! And this doesn't even count what we had to eat in the restaurants.

Do you have more tidepool pictures? Having spent almost my entire life no where near the ocean, I was unaware of these wonder until recently discovering an artist who likes to draw them. I'm fascinated!
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