Date: 7/6/18 6:48 pm
From: 'Doug Hitchcox' via Maine birds <maine-birds...>
Subject: [Maine-birds] Maine Bird Altas - Weekend Challenges, 7/6
Hi everyone:

Sorry for missing last weekend’s challenge. That’ll skew this weeks results but the effort shows and I hope you’ll still be inspired by this week's challenges. In the past two weeks we have seen over 100 new volunteers submit records, bringing the total using eBird to 605 with a remarkable 8699 atlas-specific checklists. We’ve also jumped to 176 species with confirmed records (pending some review). As always, you can learn more about the Maine Bird Atlas here: maine.gov/birdatlas

Before the new challenges, let’s see how you all did last week…

Black-capped Chickadee - Our goal was to bump up the number of confirmed blocks, which was at 95 on 6/22. Now up to 139! Plus 115 blocks with probable and another 199 possible. The map is looking great but also helps illustrate the areas that need more effort: https://ebird.org/atlasme/map/bkcchi

Song Sparrow - Just like our chickadees, a nice jump from 119 to 151 confirmed blocks over the past two weeks.

Wild Turkey - And turkeys almost double their confirmed blocks, now at 62! Keep those records coming in - the poults should be getting larger and easier to detect across the state.

NEW CHALLENGES:

1) Herring Gull - These chicks are growing up quickly but should be very easy to detect in areas that they are breeding. The first atlas had them breeding in almost every coastal block, plus a few interior blocks, so we’ve got some ground to cover based on the scattered coastal reports so far: https://ebird.org/atlasme/map/hergul Spend some time on the coast this weekend to beat the heat and keep an eye out for fluffy gulls.

2) Chimney Swift - This is a tough species to get confirmed records as their nests and young are out of sight - plus their nesting material and food can be especially hard to see. If you see a bird flying into a chimney and staying in for a long period before flying back out it is ok to assume it is on an occupied nest, and can be coded “ON”. Let’s see if we can bump up the current 4 confirmed blocks this weekend with that technique.

3) Missing Species - A pretty difficult challenge but I hope a few of you are up for it: There are a couple species missing confirmed records that breed in Maine regularly (though scarcely or regionally). Yellow-throated Vireo (Brownfield Bog or Annabessacook), Blue-winged Warbler (power line cuts in York county), and Saltmarsh Sparrow (marshes in Wells or Scarborough) are just a few of the species still missing confirmed breeding records.

Good birding and happy atlasing!


Doug Hitchcox
Maine Bird Atlas - Outreach Coordinator
Maine Audubon - Staff Naturalist
207-781-2330 x237
<dhitchcox...>

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