Sunday, December 18, 2016

Brrr!


Cedar Waxwing

The day after the Madison Christmas Bird Count is a bitterly cold one. I'm very grateful we were able get the count done on Saturday despite the snowy weather. At present, the wind chill is -20 degrees Fahrenheit and I'm at home with the fireplace on and catching up on some reading.

I would call this count about average. My two teams tallied 41 bird species in Area 21 of the Madison count circle, which includes most of Pheasant Branch Conservancy. The best birds were Short-eared Owl, Rough-legged Hawk, a few Lapland Longspurs and one Snow Bunting mixed in with a large flock of Horned Larks. Though Kate Fitzmier and I made a valiant attempt to find owls at Pheasant Branch Conservancy before dawn, we came up empty. Also, the Northern Shrike that's been hunting at the prairie all fall was nowhere to be found.

The final Madison CBC data hasn't been published yet, but here are Area 21's results:

Key: E=Only East Team, W=Only West Team, #/#=East Team/West Team, (#)=Total for Area

Canada Goose: 547 / 1232 (1,779)
Tundra Swan: 59 E
Gadwall: 16 E
American Black Duck: 2 E
Mallard: 64 E
Green-winged Teal: 6 E
Common Goldeneye: 18 E
Common Merganser: 6 E
Bald Eagle: 1 E
Red-tailed Hawk: 3 / 1 (4)
Rough-legged Hawk: 1 / 1 (2)
American Kestrel 1 E
American Coot: 1 E
Ring-billed Gull: 4 E
Herring Gull: 1 E
Rock Pigeon: 2 / 50 (52)
Mourning Dove: 6 / 10 (16)
Short-eared Owl 1 W
Red-bellied Woodpecker: 5 / 2 (7)
Downy Woodpecker: 4 / 5 (9)
Hairy Woodpecker: 6 E
Northern Flicker: 1 E
Blue Jay: 2 / 4 (6)
American Crow: 10 / 2 (12)
Horned Lark: 86 E
Black-capped Chickadee: 12 / 15 (27)
Tufted Titmouse: 2 E
White-breasted Nuthatch: 8 / 3 (11)
American Robin: 2 / 3 (5)
European Starling: 2 / 5 (7)
American Tree Sparrow: 25 / 8 (33)
Swamp Sparrow: 1 E
White-throated Sparrow: 3  E
White-crowned Sparrow 2 W
Dark-eyed Junco: 8 / 19 (27)
Lapland Longspur: 2 E
Snow Bunting: 1 E
Northern Cardinal: 11 / 6 (17)
House Finch: 5 / 2 (7)
American Goldfinch: 14 / 41 (55)
House Sparrow: 25 / 197 (222)

Cedar Waxwing © 2016 Mike McDowell

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