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Monday, December 23, 2013

Plainfield Christmas Bird Count Results

Birders warming up at the annual
compilation dinner potluck.

The 53rd Plainfield Christmas Bird Count took place under cold conditions on Saturday, December 14, with lows of -11 F in colder spots and highs in the single digits.  Our total of 41 species (plus one count week) is slightly above the 10-year average of 38.8.  Highlights this year included a Hermit Thrush along the Stevens Branch of the Winooski River in Barre, only the second time recorded in the count.  A Belted Kingfisher in Lanesboro was also a big surprise, where open water was scarce. 

As with the other counts this year, winter finches were completely absent, but we did manage to set record highs for Red-tailed Hawk (5), Hairy Woodpecker (69), American Robin (31), and Northern Cardinal (49).  Some other highlights included American Black Duck (our first since 2008), 2 Northern Goshawks, an adult Bald Eagle in Marshfield, White-throated Sparrows in 2 different territories, and a pair of Song Sparrows in Barre (our first since 2008).

Thanks to the 34+ participants who braved the cold.  A full list of species is included below:

The only Snowy Owl seen during
the count was Ken's meatloaf!
Canada Goose  cw
American Black Duck 2
Mallard  6
Common Merganser 4
Ruffed Grouse 4
Wild Turkey 147
Bald Eagle 1
Sharp-shinned Hawk  1
Cooper's Hawk 1
Northern Goshawk 2
Red-tailed Hawk 5
Rock Pigeon 364
Mourning Dove 364
Barred Owl 3
Belted Kingfisher  1
Downy Woodpecker 49
Hairy Woodpecker 69
Pileated Woodpecker 11
Blue Jay 403
American Crow 313
Common Raven 29
Black-capped Chickadee 1318
Tufted Titmouse 7
Red-breasted Nuthatch 42
White-breasted Nuthatch 50
Brown Creeper 3
Hermit Thrush 1
Golden-crowned Kinglet 19
American Robin 31
European Starling 76
Cedar Waxwing 86
American Tree Sparrow 52
Song Sparrow 2
White-throated Sparrow 3
Dark-eyed Junco 68
Northern Cardinal 49
Brown-headed Cowbird  13
House Finch 10
Purple Finch 1
American Goldfinch 425
Evening Grosbeak 8
House Sparrow 23

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