Bird count finds 147 species in region

Photo Hans Tooms/ Pixabay • A male black-and-white warbler sings his buzzy song from a woodland perch. A total of 37 individual black-and-white warblers were found during the recent Spring Bird Count conducted by the Elizabethton Bird Club in Northeast Tennessee.

 

The 79th consecutive Elizabethton Spring Count was held Saturday, May 7, with 28 observers in about a dozen parties, plus two feeder watchers. The area covered included Carter County and parts of the adjacent counties of Johnson, Sullivan, Washington and Unicoi.

The weather was less than ideal, with cool temperatures ranging from 45 to 60 and mist or light rain for part or most of the day. The mountainous areas had the most rain.

Long-time compiler Rick Knight noted that participants tallied 147 species, which is slightly below the recent 30 year average of 150 species.

In addition, most species were in reduced numbers, likely due to the difficulties presented by the weather (less singing, fewer soaring birds) during the count. On the other hand, the weather may have grounded some of the shorebirds. Large numbers of swallows and swifts were foraging low over the water in different locations due to the cool temperatures.

Also significant were some of the species missed by participants, including ruffed grouse, sora, American woodcock, both night-herons, sharp-shinned hawk, red-shouldered hawk, brown creeper, ruby-crowned kinglet and hermit thrush.

Some of the more abundant birds included American robin (924), European starling (730), Canada goose (482) and red-winged blackbird (302).

The list follows:

Canada goose, 482; wood duck,  58, blue-winged teal,  4; mallard, 113; bufflehead, 1; hooded merganser,  3; and common merganser,  1.

Wild turkey, 41; rock pigeon, 124; Eurasian collared-dove, 4; mourning dove, 259; yellow-billed cuckoo, 2; common nighthawk, 1; chuck-will’s-widow, 6; Eastern whip-poor-will, 12; chimney swift, 401; and ruby-throated hummingbird, 19.

Killdeer, 32; least sandpiper, 16; pectoral sandpiper, 2; semipalmated sandpiper, 1; spotted sandpiper, 34; solitary sandpiper, 13; lesser yellowlegs, 5;  greater yellowlegs, 1; and ring-billed gull,  3.

Common loon, 3; double-crested cormorant, 75; great blue heron, 51; great egret, 3; and green heron, 10.

Black vulture,  40; turkey vulture, 56; osprey, 4; cooper’s hawk, 3; bald eagle, 5; broad-winged hawk, 2; red-tailed hawk, 8; Eastern screech-owl, 3; great horned owl, 2;  and barred owl,  1.

Belted kingfisher, 11; red-headed woodpecker,  2; red-bellied woodpecker, 46; yellow-bellied sapsucker, 3; downy woodpecker,  20; hairy woodpecker,  7; Northern flicker,  36; and pileated woodpecker,  29.

American Kestrel,  8; great crested flycatcher, 14; Eastern kingbird, 30; Eastern wood-pewee, 11; Acadian flycatcher,  15; least flycatcher, 2; and Eastern phoebe,  61.

White-eyed vireo, 7; Yellow-throated vireo, 4; Blue-headed vireo,  25; warbling vireo,  8; red-eyed vireo,  149; blue jay,  192; American crow,  280; fish crow,  4  (present third year in a row) and common raven,  8.

Bank swallow, 6; tree swallow, 399; northern rough-winged swallow,  168; purple martin,  94; barn swallow,  405; and cliff swallow,  499.

Carolina chickadee, 123; tufted titmouse,  140; red-breasted nuthatch, 1; white-breasted nuthatch,  11; house wren,  53; winter wren,  1; Carolina wren, 161; and blue-gray gnatcatcher, 51.

Golden-crowned kinglet,  2; Eastern bluebird, 141; veery, 19; gray-cheeked thrush, 1; Swainson’s thrush, 3; wood thrush,  51; American robin,  924; gray catbird, 75; brown thrasher,  64; Northern mockingbird,  93; European starling, 730; and cedar waxwing,  75.

House sparrow, 50; house finch, 62; pine siskin, 3; and American goldfinch,  224.

Grasshopper Sparrow, 1; chipping sparrow, 95; field sparrow,  29; dark-eyed junco, 19; white-crowned sparrow, 1; white-throated sparrow, 1; savannah sparrow,  1; song sparrow, 290; Lincoln’s sparrow, 1; and Eastern towhee,  151.

Yellow-breasted chat, 11; Eastern meadowlark,  91; orchard oriole,  20; Baltimore oriole, 11; red-winged blackbird,  302; brown-headed cowbird, 101; and common grackle,  281.

Ovenbird,  88; worm-eating warbler, 13; Louisiana waterthrush, 25; Northern waterthrush, 1; golden-winged warbler, 1; black-and-white warbler, 37; Swainson’s warbler, 6; Tennessee warbler, 1; Kentucky warbler, 5; common yellowthroat, 17; hooded warbler,  85; American redstart,  14; Cape May warbler, 1; Northern parula, 46; magnolia warbler,  2; bay-breasted warbler, 2; Blackburnian warbler,  3; yellow warbler, 9; chestnut-sided warbler, 15; blackpoll warbler,  2; black-throated blue warbler,  33; palm warbler, 1; pine warbler,  9; yellow-rumped warbler,  9; yellow-throated warbler,  44; prairie warbler,  1; black-throated green warbler, 33; and Canada warbler, 10.

Summer tanager, 1; scarlet tanager,  60; Northern cardinal,  270;  rose-breasted grosbeak,  11; blue grosbeak,  8; indigo bunting , 104; and dickcissel,  2.

•••

Based on the count results, it’s not difficult to see that many birds are moving through the region as part of the yearly phenomenon of spring migration. Share a sighting, ask a question or make a comment by emailing ahoodedwarbler@aol.com.

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