12 January 2014

Kimberley CBC January 2014

Bohemian Waxwings - Greg Ross photo

Kimberley Christmas Bird Count results:

4 teams of 11 people counted our birds the other day from Wasa to Wycliffe. We got 39 species - which tied with the Cranbrook count the previous Saturday.  As usual, most bird activity was around the feeders generously filled, cleaned, and placed out of harms way by our bird-loving backyard birdwatchers in Kimberley, Marysville, Meadowbrook, Tata Creek, Wasa, and Wycliffe.
My team’s best birds were a Brown Creeper silhouetted on a tree trunk on 301 St and a Merlin that went screaming (flying quickly but quietly) along the forest edge at the south end of Swan subdivision – although it was the briefest of glimpses, the pointy wing tips, general grayish colour, size of the bird, habitat, flight speed and time of year could mean only this small falcon, closely related to the more widely-known Peregrine Falcon.  The Merlin lives year-round in our area and several pairs make their home all around the edges of town raising their chicks on insects, and small mammals and other birds – such is ‘nature’
Another highlight for our area is the continued presence of a family of Pygmy Nuthatch in Wycliffe.  The Pygmy Nuthatch is similar to the more common Red-breasted and White-breasted Nuthatch you may see visiting your feeder. If not there you may notice them going head-first down a tree trunk or stout branch and making a ‘yank, yank’ call.  The Pygmy is the smallest of ‘our’ nuthatches but unlike the other two, it prefers to forage for seeds and insects further out along branches or even in the clumps of needs at the ends.  Also, it is very quiet and its call even simpler being only small little peeps. And it rarely spends much time at the feeder, just zipping in to grab something, then back to a nearby large tree where it either eats the seed or stashes it for later – maybe an evening snack.
For good bird feeder cleaning instructions please visit the website: http://www.allaboutbirds.org/clean-feeders

Mallard 9
Common Goldeneye 42
Wild Turkey 4
Bald Eagle 12
Red-tailed Hawk 1
Merlin 1
Rock Pigeon 69
Eurasian Collared-Dove 17
Downy Woodpecker 16
Hairy Woodpecker 4
Northern (Red-shafted) Flicker 24
Pileated Woodpecker 2
woodpecker sp. 1
Northern Shrike 2
Gray Jay 4
Steller's Jay 7
Blue Jay 6
Clark's Nutcracker 31
American Crow 24
Common Raven 78
Black-billed Magpie 14
Black-capped Chickadee 105
Mountain Chickadee 130
chickadee sp. 10
Red-breasted Nuthatch 10
White-breasted Nuthatch 2
Pygmy Nuthatch 3
Brown Creeper 1
American Dipper 2
Townsend's Solitaire 1
American Robin 1
Bohemian Waxwing 569
American Tree Sparrow 10
Song Sparrow 11
Dark-eyed Junco 4
Snow Bunting 25
House Finch 37
Red Crossbill 2
Common Redpoll 25
Evening Grosbeak 7
House Sparrow 6
Total Nr of individual Birds 1329
Nr of species 39
Nr of spuhs 2

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