Date: 1/5/21 8:34 am
From: Harry Armistead <harryarmistead...>
Subject: [va-bird] Bull's Ponds sector, Cape Charles Christmas Bird Count, December 30, 2020.

snow goose 300. Canada goose 125. brant 0. tundra swan 8. wood duck 5. American wigeon 15. American black duck 19. mallard 33. green-winged teal 76. surf scoter 314. scoter unIDd 20 (dark-winged). common eider 1 (ES,TS; through the grapevine Iíve heard at least 3 parties saw common eiders, a record for this CBC; 3 ad. males were off Smith I., fide DC; Iíve heard 70 or so are at Ocean City, MD). long-tailed duck 10. bufflehead 310. hooded merganser 31. red-breasted merganser 122. ruddy duck 2.

wild turkey 30 (at start of Rt. 600; LA,HTA). northern bobwhite 1 (GLA; on the cusp of extirpation). red-throated loon 1. common loon 7. horned grebe 3. northern gannet 55. brown pelican 19. double-crested cormorant 232*. great blue heron 8. great egret 1. snowy egret 1. tricolored heron 1.

golden eagle 1 imm. (MB,BT, seen with 10X bins & 20X scope, all dark above and below, but with neatly demarcated white on wings and tail base, dihedral flight pattern, well-seen). black vulture 75*. turkey vulture 698*. bald eagle 30* (at least 2 active nests in this sector). northern harrier 5. sharp-shinned hawk 1. Coperís hawk 1. red-shouldered hawk 4. red-tailed hawk 9. American kestrel 4. merlin 5*.

clapper rail 3 (EO). Virginia rail 2 (GLA). black-bellied plover 4. killdeer 108. American oystercatcher 4. greater yellowlegs 26. willet 1. dunlin 24. Wilsonís snipe 1 (GLA). American woodcock 48 (DC,NN,GLA,KK).

ring-billed gull 94. herring gull 56. great black-backed gull 82. rock pigeon 200. mourning dove 1. Eurasian collared dove 0. great horned owl 1 (DC). belted kingfisher 3. red-bellied woodpecker 3. yellow-bellied sapsucker 1. downy woodpecker 6. northern flicker 16.

eastern phoebe 2. blue jay 1 (!!). American crow 66. fish crow 1. crow unIDd 65. tree swallow 3. Carolina chickadee 17. tufted titmouse 1. red-breasted nuthatch 1. brown-headed nuthatch 7. Carolina wren 40 house wren 4. winter wren 2. sedge wren 1 (EO). brown creeper 2.

golden-crowned kinglet 4. ruby-crowned kinglet 7. eastern bluebird 26. hermit thrush 5. American robin 78. gray catbird 6. northern mockingbird 18. European starling 294. American pipit 1. orange-crowned warbler 3 (OCWA has been increasingly noticeable on these Middle Atlantic CBCs, and even up to Philadelphia, perhaps, benefiting from global warming. ?). yellow-rumped (myrtle) warbler 620. palm warbler 4.

eastern towhee 3. chipping sparrow 48. field sparrow 9. Savannah sparrow 3. seaside sparrow 1 (EO). fox sparrow 7. song sparrow 47. swamp sparrow 17. white-throated sparrow 47. dark-eyed (slate-colored) junco 14. northern cardinal 39.

red-winged blackbird 447. eastern meadowlark 25. common grackle 150. boat-tailed grackle 60 (EO). brown-headed cowbird 210. evening grosbeak 2 ( ES,TS). purple finch 1. house finch 4. pine siskin 102. American goldfinch 89.

* asterisk indicates wide-ranging, conspicuous species whose totals the compilersí may see fit to reduce to try to avoid duplicate sightings. When I compiled Iíd often reduce these by 20% or 25%. A judgement call.

boldface and underscored species and/or totals are of most interest, but not necessarily unusual.

106 species. 3 sub-parties plus brief visits by Dan Cristol and Nick Newberry, George Armistead, and Ellison Orcutt, all of whom located unique species (total of 9 uniques). Thereís something to be said for poaching, in moderation. These 4 observers had all finished their assigned areas before they began poaching.

6 white-tailed deer.


Evan Spears & Ty Smith, west sector (from S side of Rt. 704 down to Sunset Beach Resort and CBBT HQ, south part of Kiptopeke State Park, Taylor Pond, the hawkwatch platform area, and also ESVNWR-Wise Point Road).

Michael Braun & Bob Toner, Magothy Bay Natural Area Preserve and Bullís Drive-Bullís Landing, mostly on foot.

Kristin Klein, Liz & Harry Armistead, ESVNWR, Ramp Lane, Route 600, GATR Tract, S side of Magotha Rd. & CBBT overlook.

The Spears-Smith and Braun-Toner lists contributed the roast beef for our species list total, although, Lord knows, Liz, Kristin and I tried.

EFFORT: hours: on foot 18, by car 13. miles: on foot 12, by car 38. 0.5 hrs. owling, 1 mile owling.

WEATHER: a gem; clear, winds SW10 becoming calm then SW15-20, 32-50 degrees F., above normal tide high at start then below normal low late in the day. full moon Dec. 29.

MISTAKES ?? See any please let me know.

Thanks. The Spears-Smith and Braun-Toner lists received promptly, neat and complete.

I may post a version of this report on VA-BIRD soon.

- Harry Armistead, January 3, 2021.

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