The Big Sit! 2009 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: Twitching Talons

Captain: Derek Stoner
Location: Hockessin, Delaware (United States)

Team Checklist

  1. Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias
  2. Black Vulture Coragyps atratus
  3. Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
  4. Snow Goose Chen caerulescens
  5. Canada Goose Branta canadensis
  6. Wood Duck Aix sponsa
  7. Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
  8. Osprey Pandion haliaetus
  9. Bald Eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus
  10. Northern Harrier Circus cyaneus
  11. Cooper's Hawk Accipiter cooperii
  12. Sharp-shinned Hawk Accipiter striatus
  13. Broad-winged Hawk Buteo platypterus
  14. Red-shouldered Hawk Buteo lineatus
  15. Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis
  16. Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos
  17. Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus
  18. American Kestrel Falco sparverius
  19. Merlin Falco columbarius
  20. Killdeer Charadrius vociferus
  21. American Woodcock Scolopax minor
  22. Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis
  23. Herring Gull Larus argentatus
  24. Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus
  25. Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) Columba livia
  26. Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura
  27. Eastern Screech-Owl Megascops asio
  28. Great Horned Owl Bubo virginianus
  29. Barred Owl Strix varia
  30. Chimney Swift Chaetura pelagica
  31. Belted Kingfisher Megaceryle alcyon
  32. Red-bellied Woodpecker Melanerpes carolinus
  33. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Sphyrapicus varius
  34. Downy Woodpecker Picoides pubescens
  35. Hairy Woodpecker Picoides villosus
  36. Northern Flicker Colaptes auratus
  37. Pileated Woodpecker Dryocopus pileatus
  38. Eastern Phoebe Sayornis phoebe
  39. Blue-headed Vireo Vireo solitarius
  40. Blue Jay Cyanocitta cristata
  41. American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos
  42. Tree Swallow Tachycineta bicolor
  43. Carolina Chickadee Poecile carolinensis
  44. Tufted Titmouse Baeolophus bicolor
  45. White-breasted Nuthatch Sitta carolinensis
  46. Brown Creeper Certhia americana
  47. Carolina Wren Thryothorus ludovicianus
  48. Winter Wren Troglodytes hiemalis
  49. House Wren Troglodytes aedon
  50. Golden-crowned Kinglet Regulus satrapa
  51. Ruby-crowned Kinglet Regulus calendula
  52. Eastern Bluebird Sialia sialis
  53. Veery Catharus fuscescens
  54. Swainson's Thrush Catharus ustulatus
  55. Gray-cheeked Thrush Catharus minimus
  56. Hermit Thrush Catharus guttatus
  57. Wood Thrush Hylocichla mustelina
  58. American Robin Turdus migratorius
  59. Gray Catbird Dumetella carolinensis
  60. Northern Mockingbird Mimus polyglottos
  61. European Starling Sturnus vulgaris
  62. Cedar Waxwing Bombycilla cedrorum
  63. Black-throated Blue Warbler Setophaga caerulescens
  64. Yellow-rumped Warbler Setophaga coronata
  65. Black-throated Green Warbler Setophaga virens
  66. Palm Warbler Setophaga palmarum
  67. Common Yellowthroat Geothlypis trichas
  68. Eastern Towhee Pipilo erythrophthalmus
  69. Chipping Sparrow Spizella passerina
  70. Field Sparrow Spizella pusilla
  71. Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia
  72. Swamp Sparrow Melospiza georgiana
  73. White-throated Sparrow Zonotrichia albicollis
  74. Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis
  75. Northern Cardinal Cardinalis cardinalis
  76. Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus
  77. Common Grackle Quiscalus quiscula
  78. Brown-headed Cowbird Molothrus ater
  79. House Finch Haemorhous mexicanus
  80. Purple Finch Haemorhous purpureus
  81. American Goldfinch Spinus tristis
  82. Lincoln's Sparrow Melospiza lincolnii

Team Notes

Weather: clear, sunny, 40 - 72F, with winds from the North

Location: Ashland Hawk Watch in Hockessin, DE

Time At Location: 17 hours

A great 17 hours of birding effort today combined with ideal migration conditions helped to establish a new record for the Big Sit at the Ashland Hawk Watch. A dedicated team of “Twitching Talons” enthusiasts showed that there is much, much more than raptors to count at a hawk watch site. The pre-dawn provided an awesome array of flight calls and chip notes, most wisely left identified. We heard a lot of distinctive Swainson’s Thrush calls(like a Spring Peeper’s call) and even watched birds flying across the face of the moon through the eyepiece of a spotting scope. The calls of migrating Snow Geese, Great Blue Herons, and Killdeer were most distinct and unmistakable! Flocks of sparrows chipped in the bushes under the bright light of the moon. An unidentified sparrow made a kamikaze flight right between Bill, Tom and me, nearly hitting Bill‘s hand. As the birds rushed around in a migration frenzy, it was close-contact birding! After a typical strong morning start(reaching 50 species by 8:00am), we kept chipping away at species all day long. However, the one major holdout waited to be recorded after dusk fell. A recalcitrant Barred Owl finally gave up its whereabouts and declared the day a done deal. Time to give back the night to the birds. Or team surpassed the previous high tally from the 2007 Big Sit, which was also a perfect day for migration. I feel a total of 82 is fairly solid for our section of Piedmont territory. Highlights of today’s effort included all the expected thrush species(except for Bicknell’s!), American Woodcock, Golden Eagle, Lincoln’s Sparrow, and Purple Finch. The nearly 140 visitors included 30 youth birders, many of them taking part in the Delaware Dunlins youth birding club’s monthly field trip. The kids got to enjoy a great bird show. Notable numbers of White-throated Sparrows(100+), Yellow-bellied Sapsucker(6), Palm Warblers(12) and Yellow-rumped Warblers(30) showed what a difference a day can make in migration season. Yesterday they just weren’t here. The birds definitely were around today, and just waiting to be counted. From inside one little 17-foot circle…

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