There were 10 teams and 20 observers in the field, near the average over the 26-year history of the count. Conditions and numbers were not quite ideal after a legacy of late December storms and cold snaps that probably drove a lot of wintering birds farther south. Skies were clear, but a brisk north wind blew with a layer of ice and snow still covering the ground. The 77 hours were well below last year’s coverage, but still close to average.
The White-fronted Goose was the only species new to the count. It was the sixth year for Common Goldeneye, the seventh year for Pintail, Greater Scaup, and Fox Sparrow, and the eighth year for Ring-necked Duck.
Teams and Highlights
Westfield: Joanne Fortin (mostly) and Elethea Goodkin, 23 species, 15 Turkey, 5 Red-tailed Hawk, a Pileated, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, Bluebird, and 66 Juncos.
Blandford and Westfield: Kathy and Myles Conway, 32 species, Mute Swan, 2 Hooded Merganser, Cooper’s Hawk, 24 Turkey, Flicker, 75 Chickadee, 15 Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, 2 Golden-crowned Kinglet, 21 Bluebird, 80 Robin, 15 Cedar Waxwing.
Russell and Westfield: Tom Swochak, 31 species, 500 Canada Goose, 35 Black Duck, 3 Hooded Merganser, Cooper’s Hawk, 3 Carolina Wren, 4 Bluebird, 20 White-throated Sparrow, 19 Cardinal.
North Granby and part of Granville: John Weeks, Chris Chinni, Scott Fowler, 29 species, Cooper’s Hawk, Red-shouldered Hawk, Great Horned Owl, 2 Barred Owl, Raven, Creeper, 2 Carolina Wren, 2 Golden-crowned Kinglet, Red-breasted Nuthatch.
East Granville: Mary Felix and Eve Waterman, Red-shouldered Hawk, 8 Bluebird, 8 Golden-crowned Kinglet, Cowbird.
Southwick: Janice Zepko and Seth Kellogg, 46 species, 300 Canada Goose, Greater White-fronted Goose, 2 Pintail, 4 Ring-necked Duck, 2 Greater Scaup, Hooded and Common Merganser, Bald Eagle, Sharp-shinned Hawk, Red-shouldered Hawk, Screech Owl, 4 Great Horned Owl, 2 Barred Owl, Kestrel, Pileated Woodpecker, 2 Raven, 2 Carolina Wren, 9 Bluebird, 3 Red-breasted Nuthatch, Fox Sparrow.
Westfield and Montgomery: Al and Lois Richardson, Bambi Kenney, 32 species, 12 Black Duck, Cooper’s Hawk, 72 Mourning Dove, Pileated Woodpecker, 3 Raven, Carolina Wren, Golden-crowned Kinglet, 21 Bluebird.
Westfield: Dave McLain, 43 species, 3 Goldeneye, Common Merganser, Cooper’s Hawk, 9 Screech Owl, Great Horned and Barred Owl, the only Kingfisher, Flicker, 50 Horned Lark, 2 Brown Creeper, 3 Carolina Wren, Winter Wren, 12 Cedar Waxwing.
Westfield: George Kingston, Jean Delaney, Janet Orcutt, 18 species, Pileated Woodpecker.
Southwick: Tim Carter, 28 species, 2 Pileated Woodpecker, Flicker, 3 Bluebird, 3 Cedar Waxwing, Catbird.
The 60 species recorded were below the 26-year average of 63 and the fewest since the start-up years of 1991-96. No species showed significantly high numbers. There were above average counts of Canada Goose, Black Duck, Turkey, Cooper’s Hawk, Ring-billed Gull, Red-bellied, Hairy, and Pileated Woodpecker, Raven, Titmouse, and Red-breasted Nuthatch. The last was the fifth highest total ever.
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