Sunday, March 31, 2013

March Ends

Song Sparrow

I retraced most of my route from yesterday and came up with 42 species once again. I added Wood Ducks, but missed Belted Kingfisher. There were a few more Eastern Phoebes, another Golden-crowned Kinglet, and even more American Robins. The most obvious change was the increase in the number of Song Sparrows. They were everywhere today! Yesterday I tallied only two, but today there were at least 20 of the spring songsters seen and heard during my hike. I was impressed with Kyle Lindemer's report of around 100 of them at Nine Springs yesterday compared with my paltry two birds. Perhaps the main Song Sparrow influx had only made it to the southeast side of Madison two nights ago.

Song Sparrow

American Tree Sparrow

Speaking of numbers, last year I found 71 bird species during the month of March at Pheasant Branch Conservancy. I'm down this year. This March I'm at 48 species for the month. This isn't surprising given the extended cold weather we've been experiencing so far this spring, but it's actually only a little below average compared with recent years. Last year was definitely the exception given the unseasonably warm weather.

Here's how recent years compare:

2013 (48), 2012 (71), 2011 (57), 2010 (58), 2009 (51), 2008 (47), 2007 (58)

Brown Creeper

American Robin

Red-winged Blackbird

Canada Goose

Bring on April migrants!

All images © 2013 Mike McDowell

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