Saturday 2 January, 32 participants in the 21st Dudlleyville Christmas Bird Count tallied *105 *species and *5,094* birds. This tentative total was higher than last year's 100 species; but well below the 115 average and the high of 136 in 2000-01. The number of birds, however, was a 21-year low.
No new species were seen, but highpoints were the second records for OLIVE WARBLER, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, and WILD TURKEY. The latter is expected to show up more often as its numbers are increasing along Aravaipa Creek and the lower San Pedro River. No high counts were recorded, though 15 GREAT HORNED OWLS tied with the previous high. There was no large influx of high-elevation birds in this low-elevation circle, but we did get Brown Creeper (5), Bushtit (5), Pine Siskin (1), Mountain Bluebird (5), and the Olive Warbler. Not reported for the first 16 years of the count, Barn Swallow has been seen in 4 of the last 5 years, including this year.
All-time low counts were recorded for Spotted Towhee (0), Black Phoebe (13), Say’s Phoebe (34), Rock Wren (3), Red-winged Blackbird (36), and Yellow-rumped Warbler (21). For 14 sparrow species reported the total number was a 21-year low.
As usual several private property owners generously permitted participants access to their properties. However, for the first time in 21 years the copper company ASARCO refused access to its property, which includes some of the better riparian areas in the count circle.