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Collingwood Christmas Bird Count - unofficial results


The 11th Collingwood Christmas Bird Count (CBC) was held on Thursday, 27 December 2018 - here are the unofficial results.

The Collingwood CBC count circle centres just SW of Nottawa, and is bounded on the north by Nottawasaga Bay (southern Georgian Bay), in the west by the Niagara Escarpment, in the south by Singhampton and in the east by Stayner.

The weather on count day was decent: light SE winds in the early morning (but getting moderate in the afternoon), virtually no precipitation and reaching a comfortable -4C.

Two feeder watchers and 16 counters spent 44 hours travelling 570 km to find 59 species on count day, plus another 2 during the count week. This was four below our highest total and the second highest ever. A total of 4,971 individuals were found, which is below our average of 5,933.

Highlights:

A single CANVASBACK was found for only the second time on this count.

This year's four RUFFED GROUSE beats last year's record of three.

The 10 BALD EAGLES beat the 2013 total of seven and this year's lone GOLDEN EAGLE was the first one since 2004.

ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK is a diffcult bird to find on this count. Last year we missed it for the first time and in 2018 our only observation was of a single, count week bird.

A lone AMERICAN COOT was only the second one on this count and the first since 2012.

Singles of LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL and ICELAND GULL were identified for only the third time on this count and the six GLAUCOUS GULLS found beats the previous record of four.

Both HAIRY WOODPECKER and PILEATED WOODPECKER set new count records with 15 and four individuals, respectively.

HORNED LARK has only ever been tallied once before (in 2014), so finding two in 2018 was a nice surprise and establishes a new count high.

The 35 WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCHES (we've never missed this one) and four BROWN CREEPERS (not usually found) were also high counts.

Thankfully, EUROPEAN STARLINGS were at an all-time low with 180 birds. This is much better than when thousands used to roost in the huge grain terminal in the Collingwood Harbour.

The 485 BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS smashes the previous record for numbers of individuals of this species (i.e., 114 in 2016, which was the only other year these beauties have been found on this count).

A single WHITE-THROATED SPARROW was photographed on count day in Collingwood. Surprisingly, this was a count first and it brings the all time list to 93 species.

Finally, a new record was set for PINE GROSBEAK. This species had only been found on one previous count (26 birds in 2012) so this year's 60 birds was a treat.

Many thanks to all who participated.

Burke Korol
Barrie, ON

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