Posted by: atowhee | December 18, 2021


Sunday, Dec, 19–Final Sector 1 totals for the Salem 2021 CBC: 64 total species. #1 were Cacklers at 2866! Starlings second at 674; GW teal 482; coot 336; Rock Pigeon 315 (mostly at state prison); Mallard 286; junco 235; GW Gull 178; RB Gull 136; robin 119. Bright notes: one Green Heron, thirty Hooded Mergansers; only one collared-dove and 2 House Sparrows. Some misses I blame on the wind: no kinglets, no CB CHickadees, only one warbler and one Fox Sparrow, no red-wings nor red-shouldered nor siskin nor Purple Finch.

Saturday, Dec. 18–Forget Chicago, today Salem was the windy city. The blow varied but it never stopped while we pursued our Christmas Bird Count. By 830AM we had most unexpected species of the day:

We totalled 50 species for our team while three other teams worked different parts of our sector. Probably half the individual birds we saw were at, or over, the state prison west of Greer Park. The outdoor compost heaps there had heaps of birds. That’s where the Rock Pigeons were and we had so many eBird flagged our count! Cackling Geese far out-numbered any other species. #1 duck was Green-winged Teal. Glaucous-winged was #1 gull, concentrated at the prison. Three Bald Eagles, and our only falcon was a lone kestrel. Small birds were out of the wind and mostly out of sight–no chickadees or kinglets or nuthatches or siskins or any thrush besides robins.

One of our eagles suffered a delivery system failure today and covid had nothing to do with it:

SALEM CBC AREA #1, Marion, Oregon, US
Dec 18, 2021
50 species (+2 other taxa); 3458 individual birds

Cackling Goose  1371
Canada Goose  54
goose sp.  1     Graylag at Gateway Park, not a wild bird
Northern Shoveler  46
American Wigeon  68
Mallard  149
Mallard (Domestic type)  3
Northern Pintail  75
Green-winged Teal  461
Ring-necked Duck  10
Lesser Scaup  2
Bufflehead  18
Hooded Merganser  14
Common Merganser  55
Ruddy Duck  53
Pied-billed Grebe  5
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)  225     Most on moist & warm compost heaps at state prison west of Greer Park
Mourning Dove  8
Anna’s Hummingbird  2
American Coot  92
Killdeer  7
Wilson’s Snipe  2
Short-billed Gull  1
Ring-billed Gull  6
Western Gull  1
California Gull  2
Glaucous-winged Gull  127
Double-crested Cormorant  23
Great Blue Heron  3
Great Egret  2
Green Heron  1
Bald Eagle  3
Red-tailed Hawk  7
Belted Kingfisher  2
Downy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  9
American Kestrel  1
California Scrub-Jay  12
American Crow  11
Bushtit  45
Bewick’s Wren  1
European Starling  231
American Robin  27
House Finch  39
Lesser Goldfinch  13
Dark-eyed Junco  92
White-crowned Sparrow  6
Golden-crowned Sparrow  3
Song Sparrow  2
Lincoln’s Sparrow  1
Spotted Towhee  5
Brewer’s Blackbird  60


  1. Howdy Harry.

    Your mention in your blog post of that green heron that didn’t migrate made me think of this nice winter poem. Enjoy.

    Adrift in Winter

    by Tom Hennen

    All anyone wants to know is when spring will get here. To hell

    with dripping icicles, cold blue snow, silly birds too dumb to

    go south, and sunlight gleaming off rock-hard snowflakes. I’m

    sick of breathing air sharp as razor blades. I’m tired of feet as

    hard to move as two buildings. I refuse to be seduced by the

    pine tree blocking my path. Even though…just now, look how

    it moves, its needles rubbing the sky-blue day. The glow it has

    around its entire body. How perfectly it stands in the snow-

    drift. The way both our shadows cross the noon hour at once,

    like wings.


  2. […] Christmas Bird counts. Click here for Salem. Click here for […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: