Rare bird spotted by local fans

Birding fans were all a-twitter and flocking to Oceanside on the weekend in hopes of catching a glimpse of a very rare visitor.

Summer Tanager was only the third sighting ever in B.C. Submitted Photo by Bashir El-Khalafawi

Summer Tanager was only the third sighting ever in B.C. Submitted Photo by Bashir El-Khalafawi

Birding fans were all a-twitter and flocking to Oceanside on the weekend in hopes of catching a glimpse of a very rare visitor.

Sandra Gray, the organizer of the yearly Christmas Bird Count in Oceanside, said the visitor was a summer Tanager, which was spotted in the Columbia Beach area.

“It’s an extreme rarity in this neighbourhood,” Gray said. “It has drawn birders from the Lower Mainland and up and down the Island.”

Summer Tanagers normally live in the southeastern United States, with their range extending south into the Caribbean.

“It’s a unique and rare visitor, the third sighting in B.C. on record,” Gray said.

That’s why the birders are all in a kerfuffle.