A group of Wild Turkeys that were amongst the 80 seen during the count day. Photo© Bruce Parker
29 Participants took part in the 48th Presqu'ile CBC on Sunday Dec.16th.
Weather conditions were -2C to 5C above, drizzle, interspersed with rain and occasional less damp periods. Wind was generally light. No snow and no ice.
Generally the numbers of birds were down across the board, the 13667 birds counted being 68% of the average from the last two years. The near steady rain and a lower number of participants may have had much to do with that. But warm weather with open water everywhere, and a broad sample of boreal irruptives, pushed the species total up to 85, well above the 20 year average of 74. So far there are an additional 5 count week birds recorded as well.
The new bird for the count was two Red-throated Loons, that had previously only been tallied as a Count Week bird in 2001.
Record highs, with old record in brackets, were had for:
Canada Geese - 2499 (2270 in 2008)
Gadwall - 52 (34 in 2001)
Northern Pintail - 16 (4 in 1999)
Black Scoter - 10 (2 in 2002) - also only the 3rd time recorded in last 20 years
Hooded Merganser - 262 (142)
Red-bellied Woodpecker - tied at 6 Northern Cardinal - 74 (67 in 1995)
Bohemian Waxwing missed the record of 937 by 1, a recount is being considered.
Other notable birds that have been seen in less than 1/4 the counts over the last 20 years included: Wood Duck - 4th time in last 20 years
Northern Shoveler - 4th time in last 20 years
Barrow's Goldeneye - 3rd time in last 20 years
Hoary Redpoll - 4th time in last 20 years
White-winged Crossbill - 4th time in last 20 years.
Species missed included any wren after 4 straight years of having at least 2 species. Raptors, Gulls, American Crows, American Robins, House Finches and European Starlings where all markedly down from last year, with crows being 95% down from the record year of 2011.
Thanks to all the participants, particularly Maureen Riggs for organizing this count.
David David Bree Sr.
Natural Heritage Education Leader
Presqu'ile Provincial Park
328 Presqu'ile Parkway Brighton, ON
To view a summary of the 2012 report click on the link below:
To view a summary of the reports from 1992 to 2011 click on the link below: