Date: 12/2/19 3:51 am From: Joel Geier <clearwater...> Subject: Sheldon CBC on Dec 20
This year's Sheldon Christmas Bird Count is scheduled for December 20th, on Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge in the northwest corner of Nevada.
The hot-spring-fed Dufurrena Ponds in the Virgin Valley are a winter oasis for any water birds including waterfowl, rails and even bitterns, and songbirds wintering in the region also tend to concentrated there. We usually find Northern Shrikes and American Tree Sparrow -- though we broke our streak on the latter last year -- and we're still hoping to find Greater Sage-Grouse (known to be resident in the circle, but so far we've only found tracks on count day).
Accommodations are available for volunteers in the refuge bunkhouse complex for the nights before and after the counts (so from the afternoon of Dec 19th through the morning of Dec 21st). The main bunkhouse (built for fire crews that are stationed there in the summer months) includes a big, well-equipped kitchen and common area, plus dormitory-style rooms. Usually we have enough space for everyone who wants their own room to have one. Please contact me if you plan to be there, so I can get you on the list.
The count on Sheldon NWR's sister refuge, Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge (just across the state line in Oregon) will be on December 18th. Hart Mtn also offers accommodations for volunteers, so you could make a four-day trip to the northern Great Basin by joining both counts, with an easy travel day in between. Please contact Laurel Kullerud (<laurel_kullerud...>) if you want to sign up for the Hart Mountain count.
Please contact me for more information and/or to let me know if you join us at Sheldon NWR. This count is in a very sparsely populated area (even by Nevada standards) with limited cell phone reception, so we try to sort out plans well in advance!
-- Joel Geier Oregon/Nevada Regional CBC Editor 38566 Hwy 99W Corvallis, Oregon 97330-9320 tel +1 541 745 5821