Monday, January 31, 2011
I have been keeping a list of the bird species we encounter in our yard, on walks with the dog, or during other outings in the neighborhood.
I added up the species from each month to reveal the following patterns:
We found 65 species during the year. Of these, 36 (55%) were year-round residents, 13 (20%) migrated here from higher latitudes or elevations to spend the winter, and 16 (25%) migrated from the south to nest in our area.
The Song Sparrow was the only species I recorded every month. I recorded another nine species (Western Scrub Jay, Steller's Jay, Spotted Towhee, Lesser Goldfinch, House finch, Bewick's Wren, Black-capped Chickadee, Anna's Hummingbird, and American Crow) at least 10 months out of the year.
We found the most species in May and the fewest in April. My guess is the the low numbers in April, June, and August resulted from less time looking for birds due to travel and work. It will be interesting to see if these patterns hold for the second year in our neighborhood.
Saturday, January 15, 2011
At sunrise, I arrived at Bosque Del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. An army of camo-clad photographers was already there taking advantage of the morning light and hordes of waking Sandhill Cranes.
As I drove north through Socorro County, some clouds moved in, but the snow only fell at higher elevations. Finally, I arrived in Valencia County, ending the day at my friend's house in Bosque Farms.
I think that the most interesting livestock in America, such as these chickens and sheep, can be found in this and other villages on the Rio Grande.
Here is the day's bird list:
Great Blue Heron
Eurasian Collared Dove
Saturday, January 1, 2011
The first species of the year was Cackling Goose, observed in a flock over our old apartment on New Year’s Day. The last species we added to the list was White-throated Sparrow, seen at Sarah’s grandparents’ house on Christmas Day.
I found a total of 214 species in five states, while Sarah found 208 in three states.
There were 16 species, such as American White Pelican and Golden Eagle, which we saw only in Montana or Washington.
I found one species in Texas, a Great-tailed Grackle at the DFW Airport.
Our life birds for the year were Trumpeter Swan, Ancient Murrelet and Cassin’s Auklet.
For this year’s project, we are compiling bird lists for each county that we visit in Oregon. This way, we will document which and how many species we find in different parts of the state. Stay tuned for results!