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Springfield Area Winter Count (CBC)

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December 17, 2016

On count day the snow started before first light and ended about noon, leaving ten inches on the ground.  Only four teams ventured into the field during the morning and three important teams were unable to even reach their areas for the afternoon.  That left a meager 17 birders in the field in 11 teams and 2 feeder watchers.  Hours of coverage were 67, by far the fewest in the 37 years since 1980.  Even the good food and warm fire at the home of George Kingston and Jean Delaney enticed few to brave the weather.

Team Members and Highlights        

Longmeadow:  Steve and Rachel Svec, 6 Hours, 35 species, 6 Mute Swan, 155 Mallard, 10 Wood Duck, 72 Black Duck, 4 Hooded and 25 Common Merganser, a Great Blue Heron, a Kingfisher, 2 Red-headed Woodpeckers, a Kestrel, a Bald Eagle, a Flicker, the only Pileated Woodpecker, 2 Sapsucker, 2 Raven, a Creeper, 2 Carolina Wren, a Winter Wren, 3 Golden-crowned Kinglet, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, 24 Song Sparrows, 32 White-throated Sparrows.

Longmeadow:  Jim Pfeifer, 3 hours, 20 species, Kestrel, 3 Turkey, a Fox Sparrow.

East Longmeadow:  George Kingston and Jean Delaney, 8 hours, 22 species, a Cooper’s Hawk, 14 Turkey, a Great Horned Owl, a Carolina Wren.

Forest Park:  Al and Lois Richardson, 4 Hours, 23 species, 305 Mallard, a Kingfisher, 261 Crow, a Winter Wren, 2 Robin, 34 Junco.

Springfield:  Janet Orcutt, 4 Hours, 22 Species, a Herring Gull, 2 Peregrine, 6669 Crow, 2 Purple Finch.

Hampden and feeder:  Mary Felix, 4 hours, 25 species, Carolina Wren, Fox Sparrow, 3 Purple Finch.

South Wilbraham:  Tim Carter, 3 hours, 19 species, a Flicker, a Carolina Wren, 2 Mockingbird, 13 Cedar Waxwing.

Ludlow:  Bill and Carol Platenik, 3 hours, 21 Species, 2 Hooded Merganser, a Common Merganser, a Cooper’s Hawk, 25 Turkey, a Robin.

Chicopee:  Tom Swochak, 3.5 hours, 27 species, 8 Common Merganser, 4 Red-tailed Hawk, 3 Bald Eagle, 2 Kingfisher, 500 Crow, 13 Downy Woodpeckers, 325 Common Crow, a Carolina Wren, 4 Robin, 3 Mockingbird, a Catbird.

Agawam Southeast:  Janice Zepko and Seth Kellogg, 8 hours, 39 species, 564 Canada Goose, 5 Wood Duck, 21 Black Duck, 3 Green-winged Teal, 3 Goldeneye, 10 Hooded and 72 Common Merganser, 11 Turkey, 2 Bald Eagle, 2 Sharp-shinned Hawk, 2 Cooper’s Hawk, 6 Red-tailed Hawk, 8 Turkey, a Screech Owl, a Kingfisher, a Flicker, 3 Carolina Wren, 48 Robin, a Red-winged Blackbird.

Agawam Robinson Park:  Steve Perrault and Madeline Novak, 10.5 hours, 21 species, a Brown Creeper, a Sapsucker, 40 Junco.

Feeders:  Bambi Kenney, 14 species; Barb Swan, 12 species

The 56 species recorded was 3 above the previous low of 2008 and 12 below the 1980-2015 average.  Above average numbers were 50 Turkey, 6 Bald Eagle (lowest since 2008), 3 Sapsucker (every year since 2007), 2 Peregrine, and 2 Raven.

For the second year in a row, species were found in low numbers, this time due to the bad weather rather than the good weather of the previous year.  Almost all common species were far below the average.  Species rarely recorded were Green-winged Teal (7 years), catbird (17 years), and Purple Finch (18 years).  

Other species, rare or uncommon in small numbers, were the following (with number of years found out of 35): Green-winged Teal 7, Wood Duck 23, Sharp-shinned Hawk 19, Red-shouldered Hawk 17, Raven 13, Sapsucker 16 (every year in last 10), Kestrel 13 (absent until 1997), Peregrine Falcon 16 (missed only in 3 years since 2002), Fox Sparrow 22, and Purple Finch 18.

Click below to view or download complete count results.

2016 Springfield CBC