Monday, December 27, 2010

2010 Christmas Bird Count summary

The 2010 edition of the Greenwich-Stamford CBC was held on December 19.  Weather conditions were generally favorable for a full day of birding as well as locating bundles of birds throughout our count area (see below).  Director Steve, CBC volunteer Arthur and I spent about 9-1/2 hours scouring a variety of habitats in search of as many birds as possible in an effort to census this winter's bird populations.  For anyone not familiar with the CBC, there's a wealth of background information here, and info about the Greenwich-Stamford CBC here.

View Greenwich-Stamford CBC Area A (north) in a larger map

At 7am, Arthur and I began our day at the Eugene and Agnes Meyer Preserve on Sarles St.  While we walked the forests and fields there, Steve was busy tallying species and individuals on the Westmoreland Sanctuary WMA.  Later in the morning Arthur and I tallied a variety of birds on and around the Byram Lake reservoir, Merestead, and Baldwin Road.

Lunch time found the three of us counting birds at the Westmoreland Sanctuary feeding station in the warmth of the museum.  Soon thereafter, we all spent the remainder of the afternoon counting birds at neighborhood bird feeders, small pockets of roadside habitat, and any bit of open water we could find.  When all was done at 5pm, we tallied a total of 45 species. 

Our species are as follows:

Ruddy Duck
 Canda Goose, Wood Duck*, American Black Duck (HC), Mallard, Ring-necked Duck (HC), Hooded Merganser, Ruddy Duck*, Great Blue Heron, Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture (HC), Northern Harrier*, Red-tailed Hawk, Ring-billed Gull (HC), Herring Gull, Mourning Dove, Great Horned Owl, Red-bellied Woodpecker (HC), Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (HC), Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Pileated Woodpecker, Blue Jay (HC), American Crow, Common Raven, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse (HC), White-breasted Nuthatch (HC), Brown Creeper, Carolina Wren (HC), Winter Wren (HC), Eastern Bluebird, American Robin, Gray Catbird, European Starling, Cedar Waxwing, Field Sparrow, Fox Sparrow (HC), Song Sparrow (HC), White-throated Sparrow (HC), Dark-eyed Junco, Northern Cardinal (HC), House Finch (HC), American Goldfinch, House Sparrow

Species with an * indicate a new species for our count, HC indicates high count of individuals for our count.

While we were disappointed to have missed a few species we typically find in our count area (Wild Turkey and American Tree Sparrow) we did add 3 new species we've not tallied before.  High counts were recorded for 16 species this year, an exciting feat and a good reflection of decent conditions during the count and possible indications of a great breeding season for these birds last spring.

All in all, it was a great day topped off with a delicious potluck dinner at the Greenwich Audubon Center.

-Adam Zorn, Naturalist