Location                           |   Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Dates                                |   Feb 20th - 23rd
                                              Feb 26th - March 1st, 2018   ( Limited Space Available )
Instructors                        |   Jess Findlay & Connor Stefanison
Fee                                   |   $2200 CAD + 5% GST
Deposit                            |   $600 CAD
Maximum Group Size     |   6 Photographers

 

Join myself and Connor Stefanison in the beautiful setting of southwestern British Columbia for 4 days of bird photography!

Vancouver is often touted as one of the world's most beautiful cities. Located between the Salish Sea, the North Shore Mountains and the Fraser River Delta, the city is surrounded by nature - it's no wonder why it's also one of the best major cities in the world for wildlife photography. The area is particularly productive for birdlife, the bulk of which can be found south of the city's core where the mighty Fraser (British Columbia's longest river) meets the Pacific Ocean. The tidal mudflats and fertile, marshy land found here - much of which has been set aside as an international Important Bird Area -  supports Canada's highest bird diversity throughout the winter months. This area is of particular importance to waterfowl, shorebirds and raptors. 

During this workshop we'll have the opportunity to see and photograph many of the most charismatic birds that spend the winter enjoying Vancouver's relatively-mild climate. Several species of owl are possible during this trip. Barred, Barn, Short-eared, Northern Pygmy and Northern Saw-whet are the most likely. Long-eared and Great Grey are occasionally photographable as well. During irruption years, this is also one of, if not the best place to photograph Snowy Owls. Other raptors we often encounter include Red-tailed Hawks and Northern Harriers, and Bald Eagles. Waterfowl and shorebirds that rely on the region's largely ice-free lakes and coastline also provide plenty of photography opportunities. Given they're commonly hunted all across the continent, ducks can understandably be quite skittish and difficult to photograph. We'll bring our groups to sites where the birds have gotten used to human presence and show little to no fear. This allows for tremendous closeup opportunities of tough species. We will be visiting the best site we know of in North America for photographing Green-winged Teal. Time will be dedicated to Wood Ducks - another gorgeous and much sought after species. Close encounters with Buffleheads, Northern Pintails, Ring-necked Ducks, Northern Shovelers, American Wigeon, Lesser Scaup, Common Goldeneye and Hooded Mergansers will round out an amazing portfolio of waterfowl.

Crossing the Salish Sea on a scenic ferry ride, we'll spend a day on Vancouver Island, photographing songbirds, woodpeckers and the beautiful California Quail in a friend's backyard blinds.

Adding more diversity yet, we'll visit sites for West Coast specialities such as Black Oystercatchers and Anna's Hummingbird.

Why choose us?

  • Both Connor and I grew up and currently reside in Vancouver. We both have in-depth knowledge of the area's birds, weather and wildlife.
  • All of the images you see showcasing this trip were taken at the locations we will visit and at the same time of year.
  • Limited group sizes and two guides/instructors translates into more one-on-one teaching opportunities for each participant. 
  • We are passionate about a variety of different genres of nature photography and are equally passionate about helping others achieve excellence in the styles that interest them most.

What's included . . .

  • 4 full days of photography
  • Unlimited expert photographic instruction and guiding in the field
  • Evening post-processing instruction and presentations
  • Entry fee to nature reserves and photography blinds
  • Ferry to Vancouver Island

    Recommended photography equipment . . .

    • One or more DSLR camera bodies
    • Telephoto of at least 300mm (cropped sensor camera) or 400mm (full frame body)
    • Mid-range telephoto lens (ex: 70-200mm, 100-400mm)
    • Wide-angle lens (with circular polarizing filter)
    • Flash
    • Tripod and head
    • Micro-fiber cleaning cloth 
    • Giottos Rocket Air Blower
    • Chest waders (you will have the opportunity to enter the water or lay on the shore to achieve eye-level images of water birds)
    • Spare batteries and memory cards
    • Laptop (if you wish to partake in instructional photoshop sessions)

    Past Participant Images



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    Registration

    If you're interested in registering for this workshop or would simply like to receive more information about it, please provide your details in the form on the right. If you have any questions, please include them in the message portion of the form.

    To reserve your space, a non-refundable deposit is required. Once your registration form has been received, you will be emailed details regarding how to send your deposit. A waiver will also be sent which you will be required to read and sign. It can be mailed, or alternatively, a copy can be brought to the workshop.