The Big Sit! 2006 Team Reports

Check out team reports submitted by the captains of Big Sit! circles around the world.


Circle Captain: Todd Day

Circle Location: Hughes River Gap, Virginia (United States)

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Acer saccharum

Circle Captain: John Triana

Circle Location: Hamden, Connecticut (United States)

Site is on top of traprock ridge. Cliff overlooks a large pond to the west. Always wanted to try this spot, and with the first decent Sit! day in the last 5 years, I went for it. More hours and better birders than me could have found another 15-20 species...

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Circle Captain: Amy Peck

Circle Location: West Haven, Connecticut (United States)

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anser anser

Circle Captain: Ton Eggemhuizen

Circle Location: Almere, Other (Netherlands)

Migration was rather strong (18.415 birds, 62 species), but very few rare species. Total list only 76 species, much lower than our personal record of 2003 (99 species). Nice was a lone Eurasian Gotwit (Limosa limosa) witch is rare in autumn on this inland site...

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ASFC Birders

Circle Captain: Andrew Pruette

Circle Location: Winston-Salem, North Carolina (United States)

Last Sunday, October 8th, was the date chosen for the nationwide The Big Sit! event, and for the fourth year running, Forsyth Audubon fielded a team to see what we could find out there. Well, at least what we could find from the constraint of a 17-foot diameter circle...

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Circle Captain: Herbert Fibel

Circle Location: northeast of Mesa, Arizona (United States)

Scouting reports were not promising. We solicit pledges based upon an expected count of 50 or so species, and every year I fear that we'll end up with about 25. Mallards, D-c Cormorants and Yellow-rumped Warblers were about the only species which manifested themselves in our pre-Sit! scouting expeditions...

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Circle Captain: Laurie Foss

Circle Location: Austin, Texas (United States)

The Travis Audubon Society sponsored the official Big Sit for 2006 at the hawk-watch station at Hornsby Bend Bird Observatory on Sunday, October 8th. Our day started at 6:20am with Eric Carpenter in the circle...

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Bald Eagles

Circle Captain: Stacy Hanks

Circle Location: Milford, Connecticut (United States)

Beautiful Day! Had many passerbys that we introduced to the "Big Sit". We were happy that the Little Blue Heron decide to stay yet another day, so we had it in our count. It has been in the area about a week now.

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Ballou Jays

Circle Captain: John Ballou

Circle Location: Rochester, New York (United States)

Probably saw more dog species with people then bird species, but it was a brillant autumn day, couldn't have asked for better. Didn't see some easy ones...robin?, cardinal? Had hoped for more waterfowl...

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Bill & Claudia in Cerro Azul

Circle Captain: William Ahrens

Circle Location: Los Altos del Cerro, Other (Panama)

Pre-dawn it was raining & we missed some of the usual morning bird chorus. Also, due to the foggy weather we had no raptors or swallows. Really great day otherwise.

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Bird Nerds

Circle Captain: Laurie Mooney

Circle Location: Knoxville, Tennessee (United States)

It seemed like a slow day, not a lot of movement, one here, one there, but overall we accumulated a surprising total.

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Circle Captain: Brian Bockhahn

Circle Location: Wake Forest, North Carolina (United States)

Flock of 35 Black Terns on flyby. Six Common Loon at lakes center. Warblers, Pewee and Oriole seen in mixed flocks.

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Circle Captain: Robert Dixon

Circle Location: Sterling, Connecticut (United States)

Total 45 species. Added one new species (Bobolink) to my over all Big Sit List which is now at 76 species.

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Brazosport Birders

Circle Captain: Charlie Brower

Circle Location: Quintana, Texas (United States)

We have a new permanent, 20 foot observation tower. It was increased our viewing area from 180 to 360 degrees. We are now able to see some fresh water ponds, as well as views of the jetties, harbor, and beach...

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Brumbaugh's Birders

Circle Captain: Laura Dornan

Circle Location: Minerva, Ohio (United States)

From midnight until 7 am no birds were heard or seen 21 species were seen between 7 and 8 am

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Circle Captain: Larry Bausher

Circle Location: New Haven, Connecticut (United States)

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Carolyn Haley

Circle Captain: Carolyn Haley

Circle Location: East Wallingford, Vermont (United States)

First day after 3 consecutive frosts -- noticeable drop in bird activity in area from before the frosts. Didn't see several birds known to be year-round residents.

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Circle Captain: Al Ahlgrim

Circle Location: Oregon City, Oregon (United States)

No rarities seen but we counted a nice representation of the local birds. Rain in the afternoon damped down the sightings but still a record number for this circle!

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Circle Captain: Jack Cooke

Circle Location: RR 1 Lansdowne, Ontario (Canada)

Great day for Dad and the Kids. Several birds we saw the day before wouldn't show up for us. Others we thought we might see didn't show up. Learned a lot today. Several birds could not be identified because we only got a quick look.

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Cliffe birders

Circle Captain: Don Taylor

Circle Location: Kent County, Other (United Kingdom)

See our report on the Kent Ornithological Web site at

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CMBO Hawkwatch

Circle Captain: Tom Magarian

Circle Location: Cape May, New Jersey (United States)

Big accipiter flight

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Coastal VA Wildlife Observatory

Circle Captain: Brian Taber

Circle Location: Northampton County, Virginia (United States)

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Cowford Catbirds

Circle Captain: Carole A. Adams

Circle Location: Jacksonville, Florida (United States)

A pair of Red-shouldered Hawks took to the early morning thermals floating just over our heads calling out to one another. Later a flock of Anhinga flew overhead, how wonderful. Used the screech owl tape late in the afternoon, things were just too quiet...

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Deception Pass, honestly

Circle Captain: Jim Flynn

Circle Location: Oak Harbor, Washington (United States)

A Lapland Longspur flying in from Puget Sound in the morning was the most unusual sighting. Otherwise it was just another great day of watching the birds feed in the outgoing tidal current and then dissipating as water began to slack in mid-day...

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DFO Insaniacs

Circle Captain: Joey Kellner

Circle Location: Littleton, Colorado (United States)

First a BIG "Thank you" to all the people (about 45) that came out to Chatfield and helped find birds on a cold, overcast, and wet day! Thanks to Chris at Chatfield State Park for the food and drinks, we really appreciated it! The previous best Big Sit was 61 species in 2003...

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Eagle Eyes

Circle Captain: Larry Lade

Circle Location: Mound City, Missouri (United States)

From 12:01 AM until 5:45 PM yesterday we had observers in our "Big Sit" circle on the observation deck at Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge, Mound City, Missouri. A slight breeze made it very comfortable on this unseasonably warm day for the month of October...

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Egret's Nest

Circle Captain: Liza Lee Miller

Circle Location: Boulder Creek, California (United States)

A very slow day. I had -- due to a horrible week -- let my feeders go down to nothing earlier in the week and the birds were punishing me today. We saw nothing -- heard a few birds in the nearby forest but saw nothing until around 4pm...

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Circle Captain: Lisa Chapman

Circle Location: Euclid, Ohio (United States)

A beautiful day to be out. Short waves of warbler groups would drop into the trees at lake edge. The Screech Owl answered our call to start the day. Mobs of Blue Jays sometimes mixed with Robins and Cardinals would raucously occupy a large willow from the same gorge where twice a Cooper's Hawk emerged...

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Circle Captain: Wayne Wauligman

Circle Location: Cincinnati, Ohio (United States)

It was suprising to see both White-crowned and White-throated Sparrows together under the feeder. As I watched a plane come in for a landing high overhead, I noticed four Black Vultures seemingly just as high as the plane that went right past them...

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flaxpatch birds

Circle Captain: Brad Goodrich

Circle Location: amburgey, Kentucky (United States)

White throated sparrow (found while walking out of circle), this and the juncos were first of the year. Catbird and scarlet tanager that were here yesterday not found today. Humming birds left last week around the 1st of Oct...

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Fort Fisher Fledglings

Circle Captain: Andy Webb

Circle Location: Fort Fisher, North Carolina (United States)

The morning started out with a beautiful light show from the thunderstorms just off the coast. Shortly after sunrise it became mostly cloudy with good birding weather. By 10:00 AM overcast skies and strong winds sat in for the remainder of the day...

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Fran (Are You Crazy?)Alvernaz

Circle Captain: Fran Alvernaz

Circle Location: San Rafael, California (United States)

Saw a Sharpie make a hit, saw 3 White Pelicans flying low AM before thermals. Good weather, if you like no rain. lots of birds in and out. Good time had by me(no chores)

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Circle Captain: Tim Leslie

Circle Location: Lucas, Ohio (United States)

First bird seen or heard was a Northern Cardinal at 6:25 AM, Last bird seen or heard was Eastern Screech Owl at 7:37 PM. This was our second year at the same spot at Malabar Farm, Richland County, Ohio, USA...

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Circle Captain: Bhargav Joshi

Circle Location: Vadodara, Other (India)

This year not many people join me for big sit.only my self and Mr.Lekhrajsing joinBigsit.we start our birding late in the morning at 7:00AM IST. and wind up after 5 hours at 12:00. during our observationwe have seen 28 spices of birds...

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Goosebump Gulch birds

Circle Captain: Joyce Holt

Circle Location: Salem, Virginia (United States)

I thought the fog would bring more birds, but alas

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Grassy Hill

Circle Captain: Richard Chyinski

Circle Location: East Lyme, Connecticut (United States)

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Gray Jays

Circle Captain: Terry Gray

Circle Location: Lewiston, Idaho (United States)

We watched birds from the bike path overlooking West Pond and the Clearwater River. We also fished for Steelhead Trout and watched other people fishing from the bank and from boats.

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Grosbreasted Rosebeaks

Circle Captain: Paul Fank

Circle Location: Dassel, Minnesota (United States)

The morning started out very windy and cool for the birders that arrived at the early hours. Everyone arrived dressed for the weather and occasion, with binoculars, scopes, books, cameras, chairs, and of course, food at hand, they ended up by the Birding Tower...

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Circle Captain: April Grunspan

Circle Location: SAN ANTONIO, Texas (United States)

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Gulls Galore

Circle Captain: June Whitten

Circle Location: Umatilla, Oregon (United States)

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Hartford Audubon Society

Circle Captain: Betty Kleiner

Circle Location: South Winsdor, Connecticut (United States)

Missed some of the common species due to morning fog. Unsure what is causing the lack of birds that were seen in previous years. Why the decline in numbers is still a mystery.

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High Entropy

Circle Captain: Steve Johnson

Circle Location: West Point, Georgia (United States)

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Circle Captain: Janine Mccabe

Circle Location: Kino Springs, Nogale, Arizona (United States)

The low pond water levels allowed for some great looks at the usually timid Virginia and Sora Rails. A Coopers Hawk flushed five of the ten Black-bellied Whistling Ducks just for fun. The ducks landed back on the pond but only 4 were accounted for, until the fifth lurked out of the reeds we gave a sigh of relief...

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Kentish Plovers

Circle Captain: Walter Ellison

Circle Location: Rock Hall, Maryland (United States)

Highlights of the day were having the currently resident GREAT WHITE HERON (present since 20 August, notes available on request) in sight for a fair portion of the day at the mouth of Calfpasture Cove; a good hawk flight featuring 55 Sharp-shinned Hawks, 10 BROAD-WINGED HAWKS (all youngsters) and a Merlin; the usual, but nonetheless spectacular, Bald Eagle show; a brief visit by a BROWN-HEADED NUTHATCH; a SNOWY EGRET; 7 Pied-billed Grebes in Calfpasture Cove; a CACKLING GOOSE among the many Canadas; four Royal and one Common Tern; over 500 Blue Jays with most trying to retreat northward from the island; and two fly-over HORNED LARKS (scarce on the refuge)...

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Circle Captain: Stan Sterba

Circle Location: Harlingen, Texas (United States)

Wasn't as much bird activity as last years Big Sit.

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Lakeside Willows

Circle Captain: Doug Overacker

Circle Location: Springfield, Ohio (United States)

The southerly winds all day halted migration for the day. We saw the same shorebirds all day. Nothing moved in at all. We didn't see a single swallow. Our count was a little lower than previous years.

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Lenoir Lunatics

Circle Captain: Michael Bochnik

Circle Location: Yonkers, New York (United States)

Hawks were few and far between. This lead to modest results.

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Lincoln Country Birder's

Circle Captain: David Dugas

Circle Location: Lincoln City, Indiana (United States)

The bird of the day would have to be an Merlin seen at the beginning of the sit. In all I had 52 species which included five raptors 7 warblers 2 waterfowl species and many many passerine migrants and common species...

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Loons Aplenty

Circle Captain: June Whitten

Circle Location: Umatilla, Oregon (United States)

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Lower Columbia Birders

Circle Captain: Mike Patterson

Circle Location: Seaside, Oregon (United States)

Uncomfortably cold wind from the SE. Light was less than perfect. Steve took a break to go surfing from about 10:00 to 11:00, but made up for it by staying in the rain after I left.

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LSU Tiger-herons

Circle Captain: Justin Bosler

Circle Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana (United States)

Very warm, stagnant weather conditions were replaced with cooler, less humid conditions following a dry cold front on thursday night, two days before the count. Almost identical to last year's weather pattern...

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Marlboro Flaming County Seaters

Circle Captain: Fred Shaffer

Circle Location: Upper Marlboro, Maryland (United States)

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Circle Captain: David Lovett

Circle Location: huntersville, North Carolina (United States)

Great first time attempt at big sit. With better weather, I feel we could top 50 specis at this location.

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Metro Munchers

Circle Captain: Joanna Pease

Circle Location: Harrison Township, Michigan (United States)

The day stalled when dense fog for three hours prevented us from seeing anything. Then, the winds shifted to the SE which prevented the hawk migration so numbers were unusually low this year. But, the temperatures were pleasant, we had great views of the resident raptors, and the company was good so we all had a fine time.

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Midnight Snipe Hunters

Circle Captain: Julie Lundsted

Circle Location: Jefferson City, Missouri (United States)

First annual Big Sit conducted by the "Midnight Snipe Hunters". Weather was perfect, sunny and high around 80. Best bird of the day was a Northern Goshawk chasing a flock. Also interesting was a flock of 30+ Eastern Bluebirds morning and evening...

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Mississinewa Audubon Club & Salamonie Nature Club

Circle Captain: Judy Green

Circle Location: Huntington County, Indiana (United States)

Our group was unable to conduct shifts or have locations close to the water at the reservoir. Our time was picked because many group members attend church. The middle of the afternoon is not the best time to observe bird activity...

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Montgomery County Sitting Ducks

Circle Captain: Rick Sussman

Circle Location: boyds, Maryland (United States)

Our previous high total for the Big Sit was 55 species. This year we passed that number by 9:45 and kept adding new species all day. We left early this year, at 3, since we hadn't seen anything new in a couple of hours, and we had such a high number of birds earlier.

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Mt Hosmer Observers

Circle Captain: Ric Zarwell

Circle Location: Lansing, Iowa (United States)

Other than Turkey Vulture, no birds of prey were observed - primarily due to weather and Big Sit day is a week or two too late for best raptor viewing at this location. Also, passerines were in very short supply - due more than likely to the same reasons...

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Nature Center at Shaker Lakes

Circle Captain: Julie West

Circle Location: Cleveland, Ohio (United States)

This is our second Big Sit! The cattails in the marsh were not so beaten down as last year, making the sparrows more difficult to see. Also there were no night flight calls heard and less "noise" in the marsh during the night than last year, when the temperature was about the same but it was cloudy with intermitent rain/drizzle.

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Ocean City Birdwalk

Circle Captain: Joseph Granese

Circle Location: Ocean City, New Jersey (United States)

There had been a terrible rainstorm the night before, and much of the marsh area along the right-of-way had been flooded out. There were 4x4s stuck to the frame along the dirt road, but the way to my circle was clear...

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Oriental Darters

Circle Captain: Hanno Stamm

Circle Location: Chau Doc, Other (Vietnam)

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pickens picidae

Circle Captain: Scott Stegenga

Circle Location: Pickens, South Carolina (United States)

Despite the morning showers, bird activity was good. 30 of 32 species were counted before 9:30am. Afternoon had good weather but slow birding. Highlight birds were Cape May Warbler, Osprey, and Common Raven.

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Pineywoods Audubon

Circle Captain: Ruth Heino

Circle Location: Nacogdoches, Texas (United States)

Relatively little on the move, not surprising given the mild weather. 6 Sharp-shinned Hawks, high migrants 32 Northern Flickers, migrants 9 Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, migrants

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Portage Lakes

Circle Captain: Charles Villwock

Circle Location: Coventry, Ohio (United States)

It turned out we only had time to sit for 3 hours but we made the best of them.

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Queensland Questrels

Circle Captain: Dawn Beck

Circle Location: Brisbane, Other (Australia)

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Reed's Beach Mudhens

Circle Captain: Tom Reed

Circle Location: Reed's Beach, New Jersey (United States)

A new single-day record for this site. Highlights included Brown Pelican, 8+ Bald Eagles, Sora, 2 Hudsonian Godwits (1st site record!), Common Nighthawk, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Red-headed Woodpecker, 11 warbler spp...

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Rio Salado Sitters

Circle Captain: Terry Brodner

Circle Location: Phoenix, Arizona (United States)

Tom Gaskill and I were as centrally located as possible in the City of Phoenix - underneath the Central Avenue Bridge that spans the Salt River, Maricopa County, Phoenix, Arizona. This restored riparian area is incredible...

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Circle Captain: John Callow

Circle Location: Great Falls, Virginia (United States)

Steady winds in the morning set up a great raptor flights overhead. Two white-crowned sparrows hung around us all day. Great low over flights of bald eagles, ospreys and red-shouldered hawks. Two Lincoln's sparrows gave the group excellent views...

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Rose Tree Redtails

Circle Captain: Holly Merker

Circle Location: Media, Pennsylvania (United States)

Nice looks for all, including passers-by, of an adult Bald Eagle pair. Small flocks of Palm Warblers foraging in the grass were a colorful treat for most all participants. Good looks at a Pine Warbler was had by many...

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roy's friends

Circle Captain: Roy Reinarz

Circle Location: near Burnet, Texas (United States)

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saravista swans

Circle Captain: Sheila Ryall

Circle Location: Elmvale, Ontario (Canada)

wonderful fall day light breeze frost in am

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Scrub J-oakers

Circle Captain: Hugh Kingery

Circle Location: Franktown, Colorado (United States)

A pair of courting Golden Eagles entertained us off and on for 3 hours. Each year we send scouts to sample the road below the house and the pond 1/4 mile away. This year's scouts turned up 3 species we otherwise would not have recorded, but they also saw three species that we couldn't see from the circle (Mallard, Orange-crowned Warbler, & Lincoln's Sparrow)...

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Sebastian Inlet Sit

Circle Captain: Andy Bankert

Circle Location: Sebastian Inlet, Florida (United States)

15 species of warblers, including Magnolia and Tennessee Fulvous-whistling Duck- Flock of 15 birds Frigatebird- Male flew over twice Glossy Ibis- 5, rare at the park Good numbers of migrant hawks

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Segerstads fyr

Circle Captain: Christian Cederroth

Circle Location: Segerstad, Oland isl, Other (Sweden)

Sweden's 38:th Steppe Eagle, see below, Three White-tailed Eagles, a couple of thousand arctic geese and ducks on migration as always here. A good day even if it was very windy, may I mention that 12 more species came in the day after...

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Sioux Falls Bird Club #1

Circle Captain: Mick Zerr

Circle Location: Sioux Falls, South Dakota (United States)

One new bird to our site was a Winter Wren. 4 species seen the day before did not show up.

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SLO Birders

Circle Captain: Jim Royer

Circle Location: Los Osos, California (United States)

The weather was too nice - very few passerines were moving, but it was a very beautiful day. The tides were extreme which pushed the waterbirds by us a little faster than usual and pushed many of the shorebirds out of the bay altogether at high tide...

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Smok Duck

Circle Captain: Rita Grant

Circle Location: Brooksville, Florida (United States)

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Circle Captain: Susan Soloyanis

Circle Location: Cascade, Colorado (United States)

miserable day

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Tall-tale Flycatchers

Circle Captain: Nick Pulcinella

Circle Location: West Chester, Pennsylvania (United States)

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Team Sage Grouse

Circle Captain: Kent Fothergill

Circle Location: Hagerman, Idaho (United States)

Glorious day Clouded Sulpher, Cabbage White, Mylitta Crescent, Satyr Comma, Painted Lady, and Red Admiral were the butterflies that visited our circle

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team Titmouse

Circle Captain: Elizabeth Cregan

Circle Location: Brielle, New Jersey (United States)

We observed many gulls that were not easily identifiable. We included birds heard from teh circle and saught out only a few to confirm identification. We left out anything we were the least bit unsure of (a few hawks were too far up to clearly identify) We live in an area that hosts a wide variety of birds.

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Team Xantus

Circle Captain: Jacqueline Kern

Circle Location: Saint Augustine, Florida (United States)

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The Celery Stalkers

Circle Captain: Carol Flanagan

Circle Location: Allendale, New Jersey (United States)

Following is based on Rob Fanning's report: The Big Sit! 2006 was blessed with unseasonably warm weather and lots of sunshine, but a cloudless sky and calm southerly winds made Raptor viewing difficult at best...

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The Coops

Circle Captain: Steve Mayo

Circle Location: New Haven, Connecticut (United States)

Red-headed Woodpecker was at least the 12th for the Hawkwatch season. Barred Owl in the northern portion of the Park, far from the sitters, couldn't be counted, but was seen by many Park visitors. Hwkwatch site is a rather sterile environment; moving 100 yards to the east would afford some better opportunities and boost the count another 10 species or so...

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The Nutty Woodpeckers

Circle Captain: Ethan Kistler

Circle Location: Newton Falls, Ohio (United States)

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The Old Coots

Circle Captain: Larry Michael

Circle Location: Horicon, Wisconsin (United States)

As the weather observation comments from above indicate, birding was slow after the early morning rush, which lead us to tie our low total record. However, we added Rock Pigeon, Nashville Warbler and Barred Owl to our Big Sit list...

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The Raptorians

Circle Captain: Mike Purdy

Circle Location: Roanoke, Virginia (United States)

For the second year we again conducted the Big Sit while also conducting the hawkwatch. We were hampered by dense fog until it started burning off around 1pm. We still managed to count 32 species. Highlights were 2 Orange-crowned Warblers that stayed on the west bank of the parking lot most of the day, affording great views, a flock of 14 migrating Great Blue Herons, a first of the season Northern Goshawk, a Peregrine Falcon, and a Merlin, also 50 migrating Sharp-shinned Hawks...

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The Tanawha Titmice

Circle Captain: Jim Keighton

Circle Location: Sparta, North Carolina (United States)

An unusually quiet dawn with less of a flurry of birds than usual because of rain and poor visability; quiet most of the middle of the day, but a new awakening of a feeding flock with kinglets, chickadees, titmice, and warblers as the fog lifted some mid afternoon; and even more activity during the brief time clouds lifted and opened to the late, brief sunshine before closing down again for the evening...

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The Turkey Pointers

Circle Captain: Chris Starling

Circle Location: Elk Neck State Park, Maryland (United States)

First Sit for location. Exceeded Expectations!

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Circle Captain: Caroline Stafford

Circle Location: Rapid City, South Dakota (United States)

Not a huge number of species, but it was definitely Sparrow Sunday. At least 15 white crowned sparrows, 1 chippy, 6 house sparrows and 3 varieties of juncos (slate colored, Oregon and white-winged), 2 spotted towhees...

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Twitch Whiffers

Circle Captain: George Chaniot

Circle Location: near Ukiah, California (United States)

We had a nice near-full moon for owling. Last year's Golden Bird, a Northern Pygmy-Owl, spoke up again. Maybe it will bring us luck again. We had 45 birds by sunrise. The afternoon was slower than usual, but we ended up with 75 species, which is about average for the 8 years that we have done this event.

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Utah Lakers

Circle Captain: Eric Huish

Circle Location: Provo, Utah (United States)

This was our 5th annual Big Sit. KC and I started the count at 6:30 a.m. Our first birds of the day were a couple of Barn Owls flying around our circle while it was still dark. Very Fun. Harold showed up a little to late for the owls but in time for the rush of species at dawn...

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Utley Residence

Circle Captain: Brush Freeman

Circle Location: utley, Texas (United States)

Bobcat Racoon E. Cottontail, Opossum Fox Squirrel Green Anoles 4 E. Fence Lizard M. Gecko

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Circle Captain: Kathleen Van Orsdel

Circle Location: Talbott, Tennessee (United States)

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Waccamaw Audubon Soc

Circle Captain: Richard Moore

Circle Location: Murrells Inlet, South Carolina (United States)

Some of the worst weather for birding for most of the day - heavy downpours, really poor light and in the afternoon it started getting cold and windy as well. Even the birds had more sense than us; we did well to see 48 species!

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