The Big Sit! 2007 Statistics

These statistics reflect information submitted by reporting circles. As teams continue to report their Big Sit! results, the statistics on this page will change to reflect up-to-the-minute information.

Team Information: Big Oak Tree SP Mosquito Fodder

Captain: Kent Fothergill
Location: East Prairie, Missouri (United States)

Team Checklist

  1. Black Vulture Coragyps atratus
  2. Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
  3. Wood Duck Aix sponsa
  4. Northern Harrier Circus cyaneus
  5. Cooper's Hawk Accipiter cooperii
  6. Sharp-shinned Hawk Accipiter striatus
  7. Broad-winged Hawk Buteo platypterus
  8. Red-shouldered Hawk Buteo lineatus
  9. Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis
  10. American Kestrel Falco sparverius
  11. Merlin Falco columbarius
  12. Killdeer Charadrius vociferus
  13. Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura
  14. Eastern Screech-Owl Megascops asio
  15. Great Horned Owl Bubo virginianus
  16. Barred Owl Strix varia
  17. Belted Kingfisher Megaceryle alcyon
  18. Red-headed Woodpecker Melanerpes erythrocephalus
  19. Red-bellied Woodpecker Melanerpes carolinus
  20. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Sphyrapicus varius
  21. Downy Woodpecker Picoides pubescens
  22. Hairy Woodpecker Picoides villosus
  23. Northern Flicker Colaptes auratus
  24. Pileated Woodpecker Dryocopus pileatus
  25. Eastern Wood-Pewee Contopus virens
  26. Eastern Phoebe Sayornis phoebe
  27. Blue Jay Cyanocitta cristata
  28. American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos
  29. Fish Crow Corvus ossifragus
  30. Tree Swallow Tachycineta bicolor
  31. Northern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx serripennis
  32. Cliff Swallow Petrochelidon pyrrhonota
  33. Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
  34. Carolina Chickadee Poecile carolinensis
  35. Tufted Titmouse Baeolophus bicolor
  36. White-breasted Nuthatch Sitta carolinensis
  37. Carolina Wren Thryothorus ludovicianus
  38. Ruby-crowned Kinglet Regulus calendula
  39. Eastern Bluebird Sialia sialis
  40. American Robin Turdus migratorius
  41. Northern Mockingbird Mimus polyglottos
  42. European Starling Sturnus vulgaris
  43. Magnolia Warbler Setophaga magnolia
  44. Yellow-rumped Warbler Setophaga coronata
  45. White-throated Sparrow Zonotrichia albicollis
  46. Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis
  47. Northern Cardinal Cardinalis cardinalis
  48. Indigo Bunting Passerina cyanea
  49. Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus
  50. Common Grackle Quiscalus quiscula
  51. Brown-headed Cowbird Molothrus ater
  52. American Goldfinch Spinus tristis
  53. Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias

Team Notes

Participants: Chris Barrigar, Bill Brennan, Kent Fothergill, Steve Kilhaufer, Douglas Miller, Kelly Tindall, Allison Vaughn

Weather: Gorgeous! Beautiful Fall day!

Location: Big Oak Tree State Park, MO

Time At Location: 00:00 to 19:30

Coyotes singing at night! Butterflies observed: Common Checkered-Skipper, Fiery Skipper, Cloudless Sulphur, Little Yellow, Sleepy Orange, Pearl Crescent, Question Mark, Mourning Cloak, Red Admiral, Common Buckeye, and Monarch Dragonflies observed: Halloween Pennant (1).

Our sit site at Big Oak Tree State Park was chosen to allow views of a small, manmade lake, an oak hickory woodland, and a deep cypress swamp. The site was situated on top of the lake’s levee, near early sucessional trees on the southeastern portion of Big Oak Lake. In this position, the sun remained at our backs for views of the lake, which turned out to be advantageous. The small team was named ‘Mosquito Fodder,’ a rather apt choice considering the thriving mosquito community which surrounded us. Setting up the circle in the dark, just before midnight, promised great listening opportunities. At stroke of midnight, however, all grew quiet. Twenty minutes later, a Great Blue Heron squawk. By 1:40 am, we chalked up two birds: the heron and a sole, distant barred owl. When the birding is that slow, it is hard to stay awake. By sunrise, Chris Barrigar joined the circle. Immediately, the list of birds began to grow. We were treated in the early morning hours to excellent views of 2 Cooper’s Hawks, a Sharp-shinned Hawk, and 2 Pileated Woodpeckers interacted among the aging bald cypress trees in the center of Big Oak Lake. Chris digiscoped one of the Cooper’s hawks and a Sharp-shinned Hawk resting on the same branch! Local birder Bill Brennan arrived for the mid-day lull in birding. Unusual visitors to the park, a group of Black Vultures circled the lake in the early afternoon. The afternoon crew punched in waited for the evening bird activity. By 4 pm, a Merlin came in to hunt over the lake. He perched for several minutes in a cypress tree and patrolled the mudflats. Shortly after sunset, we successfully called in both a Great Horned and an Eastern Screech Owl. All of the resident owls of the park had been heard, and subsequently checked off the list. What next? What bird could possibly arrive that we hadn’t seen yet. Always the chance for a rare sighting of a yellow-crowned night heron, we realized that since they had not been recorded as every occurring at the park, the answer to the question was: “go home.” In the course of 20 hours with 7 participants, lots of cool birds were seen and heard. Next year promises to be even better. We hope to see and sit with you next year!

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