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Spring 2017 Waterbird Count summary

Spring 2017 Waterbird Count summary

Here is a list of all of the waterbirds that were counted during the waterbird count at Whitefish Point in Spring 2017, along with the seasonal totals from Aril 15 through May 31. The count was usually conducted for eight hours, beginning at sunrise, but there were a few days when the count was shortened because of inclement weather and a few days when the count went longer than eight hours because there seemed to be active migration still going on. There were also counts done on several evenings, and highlights from those flights are mentioned separately.

Greater White-fronted Goose: 2 (with flocks of Canada Geese)
Canada Goose: 6850 (+615 during evening flights)
Trumpeter Swan: 3 on May 29
swan sp.: 7
Wood Duck: 10
Gadwall: 8
American Wigeon: 47
American Black Duck: 12
Mallard: 125
Blue-winged Teal: 5
Northern Shoveler: 32
Northern Pintail: 66
Green-winged Teal: 41
teal sp.: 1
Redhead: 12
Ring-necked Duck: 13
Greater Scaup: 386 (+36 in evening flights)
Lesser Scaup: 121 (+30 in evening flights)
scaup sp.: 161 (+4 in evening flights)
Aythya sp.: 2
Surf Scoter: 118 (+5 in evening flights)
White-winged Scoter: 1301 (+715 in evening flights)
Black Scoter: 5
Surf/Black Scoter: 15
scoter sp.: 5
Long-tailed Duck: 2530 (+208 in evening flights)
Bufflehead: 93
Common Goldeneye: 113 (+4 in evening flights)
Hooded Merganser: 9
Common Merganser: 465 (+40 in evening flights)
Red-breasted Merganser: 3461 (+99 in evening flights)
duck sp.: 161 (+18 in evening flights)
waterfowl sp.: 1
Red-throated Loon: 387 (+16 in evening flights)
Pacific Loon: 2 (one early on April 16 and one on May 8)
Common Loon: 2103
loon sp.: 36
Horned Grebe: 100
Red-necked Grebe: 1014 (+41 in evening flights)
Neotropic Cormorant: 1 on April 22
Double-crested Cormorant: 210
American White Pelican: 17 in one flock on May 23
Great Blue Heron: 18 (+3 in evening flights)
Green Heron: 1
Sora: 1
Sandhill Crane: 1350
Black-bellied Plover: 120
American Golden-Plover: 2 (one each on May 18 & 22)
Semipalmated Plover: 164
Piping Plover: One nesting pair, plus one additional bird seen early in May
Killdeer: 125
Whimbrel: 958 (+646 in evening flights)
Marbled Godwit: 2 on May 21
Ruddy Turnstone: 137
Red Knot: 1 on May 20
Sanderling: 118
Dunlin: 450 (including one exceptionally early on April 27)
Least Sandpiper: 106
White-rumped Sandpiper: 27
Semipalmated Sandpiper: 300
peep sp.: 17
Short-billed Dowitcher: 20
Wilson’s Snipe: 2
Wilson’s Phalarope: 1 on May 21
Spotted Sandpiper: 5
Solitary Sandpiper: 5
Greater Yellowlegs: 95
Willet: 8 in one flock on May 2
Lesser Yellowlegs: 19
Parasitic Jaeger: 2 (+1 seen on an evening flight)
Bonaparte’s Gull: 1365 (+382 in evening flights)
Franklin’s Gull: 1 on May 24
Ring-billed Gull: 1572
Herring Gull: 2377
Iceland Gull: 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull: 1 (likely one of three on beach together the previous evening)
Slaty-backed Gull: 1 on beach on May 19, also seen May 20
Glaucous Gull: 6
white-winged gull sp.: 1
Great Black-backed Gull: 9
Larus sp.: 1
Caspian Tern: 83
Common Tern: 154
tern sp.: 58

Of course, other birds besides waterbirds are seen on the waterbird count. At least one of each raptor species recorded at Whitefish Point this spring was also seen from the waterbird shack (except for Red-shouldered Hawk), including Northern Goshawk and such rarities as Cooper’s Hawk and Swainson’s Hawk. The waterbird count tallied most of the season’s American Pipits (1207), Lapland Longspurs (181), and Snow Buntings (65), and the season’s only Red-headed Woodpecker.

2017-06-15T13:30:01+00:00June 15th, 2017|Migration Counts|Comments Off on Spring 2017 Waterbird Count summary