[Ontbirds] 9th Neyaashiinigmiing (Cape Croker) CBC - Dec. 14

Jarmo Jalava jvjalava at gmail.com
Sun Dec 22 15:27:38 EST 2019

The ninth annual Neyaashiinigmiing (Cape Croker) Christmas Bird Count was
held on Saturday, December 14, on the Saugeen (Bruce) Peninsula.  Unlike in
some other parts of southern Ontario that day, count weather was
near-perfect, with overcast skies, very little wind, good visibility and
pleasant temperatures ranging from -2C during pre-dawn owling to +2C in the
afternoon. The waters of Georgian Bay and streams were open, but
non-flowing inland waters were partly to fully ice-covered, with thin layer
of snow on the ground.

Twenty participants tallied a total of 42 species, slightly above the
average of 39.5.  The 828 individual birds almost exactly matched the
9-year average.

Highlights included the count’s first-ever Red-headed Woodpecker, an
excellent bird on any CBC in Ontario and exceptional this far north.  Other
good finds included 14 Bohemian Waxwings, the count’s second-ever Mute
Swan, Black Scoter, Iceland Gull and American Robin, and third-ever
Northern Goshawk.

All-time high counts were tallied for 11 species:  Common Goldeneye (159,
previous high 154, average 61), Common Merganser (9, previous high 4,
average 1.5), Horned Grebe (an amazing 47, previous high 10, average 4.2),
Great Black-backed Gull (4, previous high 2, average 0.8), Common Loon (4,
previous high 3, average 0.8), Barred Owl (4, previous high 2, average
0.2), Blue Jay (129, previous high 107, average 45), Red-breasted Nuthatch
(19, previous high 10, average 6.3), Brown Creeper (6, previous high 4,
average 1.2), American Robin (4, previous high 2) and Golden-crowned
Kinglet (16, previous high 13, average 8.8), .

This was the first Neyaashiinigmiing CBC with nary a Hairy Woodpecker.
American Tree Sparrow, Snow Bunting and northern finches also went
unrecorded.  House Sparrows have now been absent for six years.

Chi Miigwetch to Neyaashiinigmiing First Nation community for hosting this
special birding event, and thanks to Rhonda and her helpers at Cozy Cats
B&B the delicious breakfast and dinner feasts.

 Jarmo Jalava and Miptoon (Anthony Chegahno), co-compilers

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