The Bird’s Eye View

Great Horned Owl

While we revel in the beauty of their plumage and admire the magnificence of their flight, to really appreciate them it actually helps to understand how birds see the world around them. Their eyes’ focus, perspective and colour sense are finely-tuned adaptations needed to locate food, evade predators, and navigate through perils.

Compared to our own eyes, and those of most other mammals, bird eyes provide better and wider ranging colour vision, greater depth of field, and much faster ability to focus. On the other hand, most birds are not able to move their eyes, and must turn their heads instead. If eyes are on either side of the head, they have a wide field — useful for detecting predators. Conversely birds of prey typically have forward-facing eyes, thereby benefitting from binocular vision, allowing them to judge perspective and distances accurately. [Read more…]

Designing a Bird-Friendly Garden

Imagine you were looking for a new home. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to fly from one property to another, have a quick look around at the layout, décor and local amenities, and then have the owner beg you to move into the one you like best? That’s what it’s like being a bird!

We’d all love to attract our feathered friends into our gardens, but they can be quite picky about what they expect from their surroundings. If the spring sunshine is spurring you to look at your garden and think about its design, keeping in mind the needs and desires of the birds you’d like to attract will help inspire your efforts.

A garden will appeal to avian visitors by providing food, water and places to hide and nest. Here we suggest a few simple guidelines that will soon pay off in sightings of many new species. [Read more…]

It’s time once again for Le Grand Défi

Équipe Le NichoirTwo years ago, Team Le Nichoir participated for the first time in le Grand Défi and despite a cold wet day, was able to observe 46 species and ranked 9th overall for the total amount of money raised to support bird conservation. Last year, we observed 49 species and raise over 1100$ ranking 8th.  Can we break our record again?  We believe we can! But, we need your help.

Our team’s goal this year is to raise $1200 and observe 50 species.  Sponsoring our team is easy. You can pledge an amount per species observed by our team over the 24-hour period or, a fixed amount to support our participation.  Our Défi will start on Friday the 16th at 7pm and will last until the next day same time. Some of our team members will even spend the night on-site in the hopes of adding some nocturnal birds like owls or woodcocks to the list.

The Grand Défi QuebecOiseaux is a friendly competition and fundraiser for bird conservation involving birders from across the province. The rule: observe as many bird species as possible from a fixed location over a 24-hour period. The goal: raise awareness and money to support the conservation of wild birds.

Part of the money raised will go to conservation projects such as the reduction of the decline of insectivorous bird populations, such as the Bank Swallow and the Purple Martin.  Another portion of the funds will go to help injured and orphaned birds being treated at Le Nichoir this summer.

Please consider supporting Team Le Nichoir with your pledge.

There are many ways to make a pledge for our team:

Wild Bird Conservation Centre Update

Building upon Success

New Main Building

In 2013 our supporters helped us complete the new multi-unit aviary complex. And, in 2014 while the birds were benefiting from their greatly improved housing,  we have been concentrating on designing and seeking support for a new main building.  We are thrilled to be able to share with you the news that we are now less than $100,000 away from reaching our goal of $944,000. [Read more…]

A Taste of Hudson Raises $41,000

Elias Makos

Now a highlight of the region’s social calendar, this year’s A Taste of Hudson was a resounding success. The culinary extravaganza and live auction, which took place at St. James’ Hall on March 28th, raised an amazing $41,000 for Le Nichoir.

The money raised will be used to provide bird care, expand the children’s educational program, and fund student employment over the coming summer.

Thank you to all those who contributed to a wonderful evening. Chefs, auction donors, sponsors, musicians, auctioneers, our Master of Ceremonies, staff and 35 volunteers worked together to create this event in support of Le Nichoir. Our list of people to thank is long but includes: [Read more…]

La Plume Verte – Online

La Plume Verte - Online

La Plume Verte – Le Nichoir’s retail adventure – is now online!

We sell bird feeders including specialty water feeders, hummingbird feeders and squirrel resistant feeders in our store. Looking for ways to prevent birds colliding with your windows? Try Window Alert decals.  Want to put out nesting boxes? We offer nesting boxes for swallows and bluebirds as well as chickadees and wrens.  We even have bat boxes!

Most of the bird feeders and feeder accessories we have tried out ourselves.

Shop with a purpose as all profits from sales at La Plume Verte are used to support Le Nichoir’s conservation programs including the care of injured and orphaned wild birds and environmental education programs.

And, because we are still a small enterprise so we do not charge sales tax.

Visit the store

Le Nichoir’s Director spreads her wings

Susan WylieLe Nichoir is proud to announce that this January its very own executive director has been appointed President of the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council (IWRC) – an Oregon based organization providing education and resources for wildlife conservation worldwide.

“I am very excited about this opportunity to promote both Le Nichoir and IWRC and the important work both organizations do for wildlife. Networking and sharing expertise is crucial in this field of work and in the pursuit of our respective missions” says Susan Wylie, B.Sc. wildlife biology.

Susan takes up her two-year term as President having served as a Director of the IWRC’s board for seven years. While continuing as the Executive Director of Le Nichoir, Susan will use her position as IWRC President to support wildlife rehabilitators internationally and to contribute to the professionalism of the field.

A Taste of Hudson is back!

A Taste of Hudson

Ten chefs come out for an encore performance at a March 28 fundraiser for Le Nichoir

Back by popular demand, A Taste of Hudson is a great opportunity to indulge in the culinary creations of ten great chefs while raising money for Le Nichoir, Quebec’s only wildlife rehabilitation centre dedicated to songbirds.

Only 115 tickets available

Saturday, March 28 2015

St James’ Hall

(642, Main, Hudson – across from Le Nichoir)

5:30 pm Hors d’oeuvres, cash bar & music

6:30 pm Dinner

Silent and live auctions

  Tickets $75  advance purchase only at 450 458 2809 (starting Monday February 23rd)

Can’t attend but want to show your support? Consider becoming a Hummingbird Sponsor by making a donation to Le Nichoir. Your Hummingbird sponsorship will help ensure the financial success of the event and all Hummingbirds will be acknowledged during the event. Not quite like being there but a great way to show your support if you can’t make it.

Start the evening with [Read more…]

Special Edition Newsletter

As we launch into 2015, staff, volunteers and friends of Le Nichoir share a look back on 2014: new pens for aquatic birds, wildlife education without live animals, difficult decisions and much much more.

Special Edition Newsletter

Download you copy here

Wildlife pens provide safe housing

Wildlife PensOne of the most difficult issues related to caring for wildlife is being able to provide appropriate housing that is suited to the needs of each species of animal. This is one reason why Le Nichoir chose to specialize in the care of songbirds and aquatic birds.

By doing this we are able to offer the birds better housing built to accommodate their distinctive needs and respect their natural history. For those of you who bird watch, think about all the different habitats you find birds in while observing them. Even within a single habitat you can come across different microhabitats. In a marsh, for example, a duck may be swimming and foraging in the open while a bittern will often be found hunting for prey among the dense reeds and grasses.

“It is our job as rehabilitators to try our best to mimic these environments as much as we can,” says Susan Wylie, Le Nichoir’s Executive Director.

Recently, the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation provided Le Nichoir with funding to purchase two portable wildlife aquatic pens. This generous donation will allow Le Nichoir to improve the quality of life and subsequent release rate of injured aquatic birds by giving them more appropriate and safe housing during their stay.

Aquatic birds spend their lives on water. While in care, they require pools to feed, maintain their muscle mass and waterproof their feathers. However, the Centre’s existing cement-based songbird aviaries were not designed to house aquatic birds – they are not ideal for birds that are adapted to be in water most of their lives.

Young Loon learns to diveThe new wildlife pens will be used by a variety of species of birds that live predominantly on water. These include species such as grebes, herons, diving ducks, loons and bitterns, including the threatened Least Bittern, a species occasionally brought to Le Nichoir. In addition, each pen is equipped with a filter system and pump to remove and recycle the water.

The pens will allow aquatic birds to dive, swim and forage. They will also offer the public the opportunity to observe these birds in a more natural environment. And it will give us, the staff and volunteers, the chance to teach people about aquatic birds’ natural history and their unique adaptations to aquatic environments.