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Allen Bird Club May Count

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May 13, 2016

Seth Kellogg

There were 14 teams and 28 observers out in the field the first evening and all the next day.  Together they recorded 137 species, an astounding number in this limited area, but average over the last ten years, and three fewer than the total in 2015.  As is typical, most common species were near their recent or long-term average, but some were noticeably high or low.  There were especially high counts of Great Blue Heron, Turkey Vulture, Bald Eagle, Red-tailed Hawk, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Eastern Phoebe, House Wren, Mockingbird, Northern Parula, Black-throated Blue and Black-throated Green Warblers, and Cowbird.  Species found in notably low numbers were Wood Duck, Killdeer, Woodcock, Ring-billed Gull, Nighthawk, Chimney Swift, Willow Flycatcher, Red-eyed Vireo, Tree and Barn Swallow, Carolina Wren, Veery, Blackburnian, Yellow-rumped and Canada Warblers.  Some easy reasons for the unusual totals are the cold early May weather delaying or holding up migration, high survival rates from a mostly mild, snow-free winter, and continued long term or recent increases or declines.  There were 32 species on the uncommon or rare list (over last 46 years), notably Black Vulture (only 2015 and 2016), Hooded Warbler (5 times, last in 2007), Hooded Merganser (6 years), White-crowned Sparrow (20 years), Sapsucker (22 years), Horned Lark (24 years - first since 2010), and Raven (24 years, first in 1992).   Thanks to all who spent many hours in the field, especially Steve Svec, whose 21 hours gave us most of our owl records.  May next year give you all more time, more habitat, and more fun sightings.

Click below to view or download complete count results.

2016 May Count Results