Sunday, May 25, 2014

Breeding Bird Count

       Every spring we conduct a breeding bird count. Most breeding birds have arrived and established nesting territory. Late migrants are still arriving. Cedar waxwings are one of the last to arrive as they show up in mid June.

      Today was a perfect day for a count. The temperature was in the 15C (60 F) to 20 C (70) range. There was thin cloud and very little wind. This combination means that birds are moving and it's a little easier to see them. 

     I have a territory that I've counted in for years. It consists of a wide ravine. Most of it is old growth forest with some open spots that have been made into picnic areas or playgrounds. I saw 19 species of birds today. If I'd known I was on 19 I'd have worked a little harder to find number twenty. There were two species that were there but I didn't get them . I heard a woodpecker but couldn't find him in some old dead poplar so I had to leave him. And of course there's always a warbler that sings his heart out but never shows himself. I'm sure I had a golden eagle but it was too far away to be definite. There were also two small birds chasing each other beside the stream.

   We are also supposed to count blooming plants. Since things are late this year some common species are missing.

    Now between me and my primitive camera, I don't get bird photos. So I do the next best thing. I bring you flower photos. Flowers sit still while you photograph them.

Buffalo beans

Early blue violet

Small flowered butter cup

        Count days are a lot of fun for me. Are there any other birders out there who do counts?