Carden Alvar Nature Board by Bob BowlesCarden Challenge results

This past weekend, 11 teams competed in the annual Carden Challenge, and in total recorded a record 156 species in a 24-hour period. Birds that were new to the Challenge, now in its 9th year, were Northern Shoveller, Bufflehead, Lesser Scaup, and Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Other notable finds included 22 warbler species (with one more possible but under review), the Red-headed Woodpecker first reported by Eleanor Beagan on Wylie Road, late Lesser Yellowleg and White-crowned Sparrow, and multiple reports of Yellow-billed Cuckoo.

The winner of the Carden Cup, with 134 species, was the Wylie Road Runners team of Martin Parker, Steve O'Donnell, Matthew Toby, and Sean Smith. The Biodiversity Trophy, which is based on mammals, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies as well as birds, was won by the Snakes on the Plain team of Susan Blayney, Kathy Parker, Alex Mills, and Chris Evans. They listed 117 bird species along with many species in other categories.

Participants in the 2014 Carden Challenge raised over $22,000 for the conservation work of the Couchiching Conservancy. Thanks to everyone who took part.

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