The Swan and Goose counters can not be put off by some inclement weather, so 8 counters in two cars left the dog park. It was nice to have our good friends Bob and Helen along this week who needed a break from moving and also to freshen up their skills for the upcoming Christmas Bird count. You could tell from the wind that winter was only a couple of days away as in some locations it bit at the joints whenever one got out the car.
Our Trumpeter Swan numbers dropped by about 100 birds this week mostly adults, I guess they heard about the storm coming in and left for better weather. Most swans being up on Bench Road. Canada Geese numbers remained pretty much the same and a nice Greater White-fronted Goose was off Herd Road. Gone were the 14 Snow Geese seen the day before along Willmot Road, but I have added in the picture for your enjoyment.
As I type this today a massive storm has just gone through the valley with trees down and no power. Sirens are going off all over. Oh well we got our count done yesterday just in time.
Eagle numbers dropped way down this week and so did other raptor species, we did add the American Kestrel from Richards Trail and a Merlin flew over A & W as we broke for lunch. Also at our break a flock of 200 Canada Geese passed over and landed in Somenos Marsh so as we had already counted the area they were added to out total.
It appears that my bird identification skills were down this week as a possible Golden Eagle along Herd Road turned out to be a Red-tailed Hawk and a Red-tailed Hawk along Boy’s Road turned out to be a immature Bald Eagle, well what can I say I was in with the ladies this week and my mind was very taxed. It is hard to concentrate when you keep getting asked what’s that and what’s this especially when we have gone passed it and I can’t bend my neck around like an owl.
A poor old Scarecrow along Richards Trail was failing in it’s duty as the geese had him surrounded.
Duck numbers are still low but all this rain might help to boost their numbers as the fields are getting really flooded.
Again this week dickie bird numbers were very low with a few Golden-crowned Sparrows and Dark-eyed Junco’s. One of the counters did see a Northern Shrike on the Dock Road but sadly when we all turned around the bird had flown.
There is not much more I
can say about the day, just thanks to all my friends for their help on the count and we will now take a two week break for Christmas and the New Year, so from all of us to all of you have a great winter break and we will be back at it in on January 8th 2019.
Not so scary Scarecrow, by Derrick Marven
Canada Geese on Richards Trail by Derrick Marven
Paddling gull by Derrick Marven
Snow Geese from Tuesday by Zan Stenhouse
Ring-necked Ducks by Zan Stenhouse
Swans and Geese by Zan Stenhouse