Timiskaming Birds Forum


2016 Christmas Bird Counts

Last post 02-13-2017 10:35 AM by Serge. 7 replies.
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  • 12-11-2016 9:29 AM

    2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    Well, it's that time of year again. Mark your calendars for this year's Christmas Bird Count dates if you are planning to participate. 

    The Audubon Christmas Bird Count is an annual event that takes place throughout North, Central and South America between mid-December and early January. Each count takes place during a single calendar day and covers the area within a circle measuring 24 kilometers in diameter. We are out for a good portion of the day, recording not only the different species seen, but also the number of individuals of each species. There have traditionally been four currently active count circles in Timiskaming District; Haileybury, Mountain Chutes, Hilliardton Marsh and Kirkland Lake. This year, however, a fifth has been added for the Matachewan area.

    The first of our Christmas Bird Counts, for the Haileybury count circle, is scheduled to take place on Saturday, December 17th. We generally meet at McDonald's Restaurant in New Liskeard at 8:30 AM. Following tradition, some of us are meeting for breakfast between 8:00 and 8:30 AM. The count will start at 9:00, and we usually finish birding around 3:30 or 4:00. It is customary for us to get together afterwards and compile results, so bargain on the day taking until 4:30 or so.

    You don't have to be an expert birder to participate in this event. If you are a novice, we will pair you up with a more experienced birder. In fact, we encourage newcomers to come out, as it is a great way to improve your skills and learn all of your winter birds in the company of a "seasoned" observer. Bring a lunch, binoculars, and dress appropriately for spending time outside in the cold weather, including good boots in case we need to walk around in wet or snowy locations. Other handy items to bring include a bird ID book, note book etc. We will supply a map of the survey circle and tally forms.

    If you would like to watch your feeder for the day instead, and report your feeder results for the day to us afterwards, please contact the coordinator for your area. We will need to know in advance if people are watching their feeders so that these locations will not be counted during the "roving" tally to prevent double counting.

    This event is not just about counting birds, says Dick Cannings, Bird Studies Canada's program coordinator. Christmas Bird Count data informs decisions by wildlife managers across Canada. Because birds are early indicators of environmental threats to habitats we share, this is a vital survey of North America and, increasingly, the Western Hemisphere.

    When & Where?

    If you plan on joining us, please call in advance so that we can prepare maps & tally sheets and make sure we have enough vehicles.

    Haileybury Count Circle: Saturday, December 17th. Count starts at 9:00 AM Sharp. Be there by 8:30 to get your area of coverage.
    To participate in the Haileybury Count, call Mike Werner at 705-680-0044.

    If you'd rather participate in the Matachewan count, it is on the same day, Saturday, December 17th. Please contact Jared Taman for participation details.

    Hilliardton Count Circle: Sunday, December 18th. We will meet at 8:30 AM at CoffeeTime in Englehart, where we will plan our routes & distribute maps & tally sheets. Count starts at 9:00 AM sharp, so plan to arrive a earlier.
    To participate in the Hilliardton Count, call Serge Gendron at 705-544-2449.

    Mountain Chutes Count Circle (including Elk Lake): Monday, December 26th.
    For the Mountain Chutes Count, call Mike Werner at 705-680-0044.
    For this count, we will meet at the chuch hall of Nativity Parish Catholic Church at 9:00 AM.

    Kirkland Lake Count Circle: Friday, January 1st, 2016. 8:00 at Tim's West, Kirkland Lake
    To participate in the Kirkland Lake Count, call Mike Leahy at 705-642-1982.

    For the keeners out there, "Count Week" includes three days before and three days after the chosen Count Day. So for the Haileybury Circle, Count Week begins on Wednesday, the 14th and ends on the 20th, the following Tuesday. For the Hilliardton Count, the dates are 15th to the 21st. Species not recorded on the official day of the count, but within the official count circle, can be recorded if observed between those dates.

    Watch this forum for last minute details on meeting locations and times.

    See you there!

  • 12-25-2016 12:51 PM In reply to

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    With freezing rain in the forecast for Monday morning, it may be wise to postpone the Elk Lake / Mountain Chutes count by at least a day.  Stay tuned this evening for updates. I will post something further at around 9:00 PM or so, after seeing how the forecast develops.

  • 12-25-2016 7:29 PM In reply to

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    Well, its still not clear where the main brunt of the storm will hit, but it's a large enough system that its mostly down to timing. We're definitely going to get something!  I'll make up my mind for sure about wether to proceed with the count or to postpone by about 7:30 am on Monday morning, so expect a final update from me at that time. In the meantime, hope everyone had a merry Christmas!

  • 12-26-2016 5:59 AM In reply to

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    The count is a GO! See you there.

  • 01-02-2017 11:18 AM In reply to

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    We held the KL count on Jan 1 - numbers were good at over 1300 individuals with 26 species reported. Thanks to all who participated - Mike W, Tom W, Mark M Serge G, Ann Gaston, Bea M and Jean-Marie Messier.Here are the results:


    BC Chickadee 89, RB Nuthatch 11, WB Nuthatch 1, Brown Creeper 1, A Goldfinch 1, Purple Finch 2, Pine Grosbeak 125, Evening Grosbeak 322, Common Redpoll 377, Snow Bunting 52, Raven 60, Crow 5, Rock Pigeon 104, Blue Jay 54, Gray Jay 22, Junco 1, Starling 20, Hairy Woodpecker 14, Downy Woodpecker 6, Pileated Woodpecker 1, Bohemian Waxwing 7, Ruffed Grouse 1, Northern Shrike 1, Mallard 7, Black Duck 1, White-winged Crossbill 28. Total species 26, Total individuals 132

  • 01-09-2017 6:58 PM In reply to

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    Results of the Elk Lake count are as follows: 

    Ruffed Grouse 3
    Spruce Grouse 1
    Rock Pigeon 4
    Downy Woodpecker 2
    Hairy Woodpecker 6
    Pileated Woodpecker 1
    Gray Jay 9
    Blue Jay 27
    American Crow 1
    Common Raven 91
    Black-capped Chickadee 80
    Red-breasted Nuthatch 6
    European Starling 1
    Snow Bunting 1
    White-crowned Sparrow 1
    Common Grackle 1
    Pine Grosbeak 23
    Purple Finch 2
    American Goldfinch 14
    Evening Grosbeak 189
    Number 463
    Species 20

    Thanks to all who participated: Michael Werner, Serge Gendron, Mark Milton, Lionel Venne, Jim Crorken, Paul Dickson, Mickey Major and Bill Carter.

  • 01-09-2017 7:00 PM In reply to

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    Results of the Temiskaming Shores count are as follows: 

    Common Merganser 1
    Bald Eagle 5
    Herring Gull 1
    Rock Pigeon 166
    Downy Woodpecker 2
    Hairy Woodpecker 4
    Pileated Woodpecker 1
    Blue Jay 14
    American Crow 106
    Common Raven 283
    Black-capped Chickadee 74
    Red-breasted Nuthatch 3
    White-breasted Nuthatch 1
    Carolina Wren 1
    American Robin 3
    European Starling 192
    Bohemian Waxwing 87
    Snow Bunting 3
    Junco 2
    Pine Sisikin 1
    Common Redpoll 264
    American Goldfinch 59
    Evening Grosbeak 93
    Number 1366
    Species 23

    Count Week Species
    White-winged Crossbill
    Red-bellied Woodpecker
    Common Goldeneye

    Thanks to all those who participated, including Michael Werner, Serge Gendron, Mark Milton, Bruce Murphy, Joanne Goddard and Leslie Simms.

  • 02-13-2017 10:35 AM In reply to

    • Serge
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 02-11-2008

    Re: 2016 Christmas Bird Counts

    The Hilliardton Christmas Bird Count was held on Sunday December 18th 2016.

    Thank you to the participants Mike Werner, Mike Leahy, Mark Milton, Eileen Fisher and Bruce Murphy.

    Here are the results:


    Ruffed Grouse 1
    Rock Pigeon 137
    Mourning Dove 1
    Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
    Downy Woodpecker 2
    Hairy Woodpecker 5
    Pileated Woodpecker 1
    Northern Shrike 1
    Gray Jay cw
    Blue Jay 21
    American Crow 2
    Common Raven 50
    Horned Lark 10
    Black-capped Chickadee 88
    Red-breasted Nuthatch 1
    White-breasted Nuthatch cw
    European Starling 222
    Bohemian Waxwing cw
    Lapland Longspur 4
    Snow Bunting 677
    White-winged Crossbill cw
    Common Redpoll 2
    American Tree Sparrow 2
    White-crowned Sparrow cw
    Pine Grosbeak 3
    Purple Finch 5
    American Goldfinch 6
    Evening Grosbeak 45
    House Sparrow 13
    Total Birds 1300
    Count Day Species 25
    Count Week Species 5
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