Sullivan County Christmas Bird Count (Monticello)

Red-shouldered Hawk near Sacket Lake.

Red-shouldered Hawk near Sacket Lake.

An immature Bald Eagle at the Rio Reservoir.  A record setting 47 Bald Eagles came off that roost this morning.

An immature Bald Eagle at the Rio Reservoir. A record setting 47 Bald Eagles came off that roost this morning.

Lance Verderame and I covered my traditional area of the Monticello CBC this morning and early afternoon. Temps ranged from 29 to 39 degrees. There was some snow cover in certain areas, others were open. Water was entirely frozen with the exception of the channels at the Rio and Mongaup Reservoirs. The morning was cloudy with a few sprinkles. At 11:30 am a steady heavy rain began. We finished for the day at 1:00 pm due to the rain and reduced bird activity. The day had many highs and lows. The most amazing part of the morning was a record setting 47 BALD EAGLES coming off the Rio Reservoir Roost. There were 25 adult and 22 immature eagles. This broke our previous record of 34 off the roost several years back. The second record for the day was an equally amazing 30 COMMON RAVENS coming off their roost on the ridge above the reservoir. All the other species recorded were in modest numbers. Unusual misses for our area included Red-bellied Woodpecker, Red-tailed Hawk, Turkey, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Carolina Wren, American Robin, Eastern Bluebird and House Sparrow. Here is the complete list with totals for our area. I will post a follow up of the complete count if and when I get the results.

Black Duck – 6 -all time low
Hooded Merganser – 4 -low
Common Merganser – 15 – low
BALD EAGLE – 47 – all time high
Red-shouldered Hawk – 2
Ruffed Grouse – 1
Ring-billed Gull – 1 – low
Mourning Dove – 13
Belted Kingfisher – 1
Downy Woodpecker – 4 – low
Hairy Woodpecker – 2
Pileated Woodpecker – 3
Blue Jay – 37
American Crow – 35
COMMON RAVEN – 30 – all time high
Black-capped Chickadee – 48 – low
Tufted Titmouse – 3 – low
White-breasted Nuthatch – 5 – low
Winter Wren – 1
Golden-crowned Kinglet -1 – low
Hermit Thrush – 1
European Startling – 104
Song Sparrow – 1
American Tree Sparrow – 3
White-throated Sparrow – 4
Dark-eyed Junco – 51
Northern Cardinal – 5
Purple Finch – 6
American Goldfinch -50

That’s a total of 29 species, 474 individuals. A good count for us overall.

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2 Responses to Sullivan County Christmas Bird Count (Monticello)

  1. Deb Kral says:

    WOW, congratulations on those eagle #s, John, guess I know where I might bird tomorrow! We had a huge amount of WB nuthatch, E. bluebirds and Cedar Waxwing in our sector in the U/D CBC yesterday. Haven’t seen the numbers posted yet.

    • Deb, The Eagles are coming off the roost just before and after sunrise. We got our first one at 6:45 and by 7:30 they were done. Of course at least about a dozen remained in the area. Good luck if you go. We missed both bluebird and waxwing this year. Happy New Year! John

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