www.reifelbirdsanctuary.com

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Winter home of the Snow Geese and one of Canada's top birdwatching sites.
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Current Volunteer Postings

Last updated June 28, 2018

Our regular bi-weekly Saturday Bird Survey Team

Since 2012, we have been conducting regular surveys of the Sanctuary every other Saturday morning. Although we have had lots of volunteers some years, some of them have moved on to other tasks, so there are opportunities now to sign up. We give preference to university and college students but welcome all.

Trail Hosts (a.k.a. Weekend Warriors)

Sunny days, Snow Geese viewing opportunities and the likelihood of seeing Owls often brings large crowds to the Sanctuary in fall and winter. Spring Break can be challenging if the weather is fine. in 2018, for example, we had 12,000 visitors in March. Ducklings, goslings and the Sandhill Crane family draw crowds in the summer months. We have found it very helpful to have a small team of weekend volunteers to supplement our staff on site. The goal is to make sure the visitors are doing okay and to inform them of interesting birds or to remind them of the rules. This can be both very challenging and very rewarding.

In particular this summer we need people to be "crane wardens" to keep an eye on the crane family as they move about the trails, and "IOC volunteer hosts" for the third week in August when the International Ornithologist Congress is in Vancouver and we are on the receiving end of many tours.

Museum Docent

We are seeking a person willing to open the museum to the public for a few hours Sunday, answer visitor questions, but mainly just to be present so that the room is supervised. This position is ideal for someone who knows about the Sanctuary (preferably a long-term member) and is willing to spend a few hours a week indoors instead of out on the trails. Come and talk to either Varri or Kathleen at the Gift Shop if you would like to be considered. We have one volunteer, but she is away for most of the summer. We hope to have a volunteer present for part of every day for the third week in August.

Short-term Work Parties

Although we sometimes use volunteers for trail maintenance and for habitat work, there is not a set schedule and this kind of activity is usually reduced in winter to avoid disturbing the birds

Usually, you can count on getting muddy, dirty or sweaty. We will be tackling the projects below in the next few months to tidy up the place for fall. If you are, interested in these tasks, send us an email and we will contact you when we have dates set. Many hands make light work.

  • "Tractor, Trailer, Shovel and Rake", also known as adding a little more trail surface gravel to tidy up muddy spots and give people a little more traction in some slippery or uneven areas.
  • "Rock Rehab", also know as relocating all the rip-rap people have thrown into the pond, adding some more for shoreline protection, and tidying up any large shoreline rock features.
  • "Snips, Shears and Saws", yes, pruning along our trails, not in a really invasive manner, especially in nesting season, but if we don't do it, there are no trails.
  • " Marsh Mudwork". If we get an opportunity, we will need to assemble some people willing to cut back some of the cattai near the tower to open up the view. People without gumboots or afraid of getting dirty need not apply. If you are game, though, it is oddly satisfying to cut these large robust plants and to become one with the mud.

Paperwork

We ask volunteers to complete a volunteer application form for our files at the time that you start working as a volunteer. The form is under revision right now, but will be available at the Gift Shop.

Kudos

Ever wonder how we keep miraculously producing new supplies of brown seed bag treats, even after a hectic weekend when hundreds of bags of grain have gone down the gullets of the ducks?

Eric and Eileen are just two of our seed-bagging volunteers, but they are voted most likely to take on the challenge of getting us all up to date and filling all the "empties" just in one morning.

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