The Green Party of Canada today celebrates the annual return of the Bufflehead, the world’s smallest diving duck, to the Saanich Peninsula.
These punctual sea ducks return to their winter stopover on the southern tip of Vancouver Island every year on October 15, the 298th day of the solar cycle.
“Buffleheads are a truly Canadian species, living in lakes and ponds throughout the Boreal forest, from coast to coast,” said Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada and MP for Saanich–Gulf Islands.
“Each autumn in my riding, we celebrate the return of these beautiful birds, and we celebrate the many years of hard work of local conservationists who have fought to protect the Bufflehead habitat in Shoal Harbour Migratory Bird Sanctuary.”
The town of Sidney’s official coat of arms features two buffleheads as a symbol of the town’s coastal location, and in honour of the ducks’ vivacity and boundless energy.
Added May: “The buffleheads’ arrival is a remarkable event, but it’s important to remember that naturalists are closely watching the timing of their migration, as any changes may provide a signal of climate change.”
Today, the Friends of Shoal Harbour Society will again be hosting a celebration of All Buffleheads Day on Roberts Bay in Sidney, to coincide with the birds’ expected return at approximately 12:00 PM local time.
“There are a large number of buffleheads in Ottawa, many in the House of Commons. But there is NOTHING buffleheaded about the honourable Member of Parliament from Saanich-Gulf Islands!” said Green Deputy Leader Bruce Hyer, MP for Thunder Bay–Superior North.
In October 2012, Ms. May, seconded by Mr. Hyer, introduced Bill C-454, An Act respecting an All Buffleheads Day.