The Birds of Bow Valley Provincial Park

We are away for the winter in Panama enjoying a warmer climate, as well as some spectacular birding, so this month’s post takes us back to one of our favourite summertime destinations in Alberta!

Psssst!  Wanna hear a little secret?  Bow Valley Provincial Park is a hidden gem in Alberta.

The park is only 33 sq. km but it is packed with a dense variety of habitat, wildlife and birds.   We go there early in the morning from time-to-time (while the masses visit Lake Louise and Banff) and we never seem to be disappointed!

This Lincoln Sparrow stayed hidden most of the time but every once in a while he popped up onto branch and posed for a second or two (with a yummy breakfast in its beak).

Lincoln Sparrow


Willow Flycatchers are often overlooked and/or confused with other species.  There are several that look the same and it’s difficult to tell them apart from one another, but this little guy gave himself away by repeating his song over and over!  He was very cooperative and posed several times for the camera, often approaching us at close range.

Willow Flycatcher

Willow Flycatcher (Close-up)

Who doesn’t like a Yellow Warbler?  This boisterous male was hanging out in the same willow thicket as the Willow Flycatcher.  Yellow Warblers are pretty common but they have this knack for dashing in and out of bushes a few seconds before you can click the shutter button on the camera.  Patience won the battle for us today, however.  Gotcha!

Yellow Warbler

Over 220 species have been recorded in Bow Valley Provincial Park according to ebird.  Check here for a complete list of recent sightings:

Marcy & Ray Stader

About StaderArtBirds

Our relatively recent passion for birds can be attributed to two factors. The first is a personal misfortune that led us to birding, which you can read here. The second is photography, which allows us a glimpse into the elusive world of birds by enabling us to capture incredible detail that we would never be able to see with our naked eye.

Birds are stunningly beautiful but they tend to be very small and difficult to see. They are often well hidden in trees or grass and are of course, very “flighty” (obviously), never staying in one spot very long. A good pair of binoculars are a must for birding but even with binoculars you can only watch the bird as long as it chooses to stay in that particular spot. A beautiful bird in an amazing setting may have only last a second or two but with photography we can permanently capture its beauty and appreciate it long after the fleeting moment has passed.

Bird photography has proved to be some of the most challenging photography we’ve encountered thus far. It requires incredible patience for the right moment and very fast reaction time and skill to capture the image.

We love to share our images with all who enjoy birds. But more importantly, we hope to inspire interest in birds with new people who have not previously had a connection to our avian friends and cultivate an interest in conserving them.

We hope you enjoy these special moments in time when time stands still.

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2 Responses to The Birds of Bow Valley Provincial Park

  1. Beautiful photographs! I’ll have to check out that Provincial Park next time I’m in Alberta!

  2. Bob Lefebvre says:

    Great shots as usual! I have not yet been to that park; I’ll have to go in the spring.
    In your profile paragraph, second sentence, I think there is supposed to be a link but there isn’t.