01 January 2008

Day One - Audubon 200 Club Kickoff

Every year, the Bridgerland Audubon Society leads a field trip on January 1st so that people who are trying for the 200 Club can get a good start on the first day of the year. Today I joined that trip and we found some great birds!

I couldn't sleep at all last night so at about 5:30AM I finally gave up and decided to start my birding for the year. I tried broadcasting owl calls in Green Canyon and Logan Canyon, but I didn't get any responses. On my way back to meet for the field trip, I stopped by the Logan Cemetery, where I found several bird species including a Brown Creeper.

The highlights for the Audubon field trip fell into two categories: boreal migrants that only occur in the county during the winter and birds that are more or less common in other times of the year, but which do not usually occur here in the winter. The winter migrants we saw included Bohemian Waxwings, American Tree Sparrows, Merlins, and Barrow's Goldeneye. Most of the birds that usually don't overwinter here were first located on the Christmas Bird Count a couple weeks ago, and included a Great Egret and a Greater Yellowlegs.

Notable misses included a White-throated Sparrow that Craig Fosdick and I could not relocate and a Short-billed Dowitcher that was seen on the CBC and earlier this morning, but which I could not find in my two visits to the area. In total, I ended up with 60 species for my list, a great start at 30% of the goal in a single day! But of course, the more species I've seen, the more difficult it will be to add new ones to the list. . . .

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