The Big Sit! 2018 Team Reports

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


Circle Captain: Amy Peck

Circle Location: West Haven, Connecticut (United States)

Big Sharp-shinned day.

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Ann Lee Ponders

Circle Captain: Tom Williams

Circle Location: Colonie, New York (United States)

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B.W. Surf Scopers

Circle Captain: Frank Gallo

Circle Location: Milford, Connecticut (United States)

Milford Point Surf Scoper’s Big Sit! 2018 In 2014, the year that our Big Sit! birding team, The Surf Scopers, recorded our highest species total of 117, I wrote, ”Well, on Sunday, we had the most amazing day I've seen in 21 years of doing the Big Sit! The weather set up perfectly; a front cleared on Saturday afternoon bringing N/NE winds overnight and through the morning...

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Backside Boise Birders

Circle Captain: R L Rowland

Circle Location: Boise, Idaho (United States)

Good day as usual to be out birding. Constant breeziness all day made for a bit of wind chill and seemed to be keeping some birds down. Lot of foot traffic from park users but few approached us to ask about what we were doing...

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BAG Birders

Circle Captain: Genevieve Johannsen

Circle Location: Allyn, Washington (United States)

The challenge was set early on as the team all trained their scopes on a singular duck diving and reemerging, but with a short neck and crested head. After much deliberation the consensus was that it was, indeed a Wood duck, but a female...

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Circle Captain: Robert Dixon

Circle Location: Central Village, Connecticut (United States)

Perfect weather made for a great day after a washout last year. Record 64 species with 9 new species for our Big Sit location. A few highlights were two Cackling Geese, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, multiple Red-breasted Nuthatches and two flyover Northern Shovelers...

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Bell Hollow Buteos

Circle Captain: John Carter

Circle Location: Howard, Pennsylvania (United States)

A great time enjoying the birds, family and the lake. What a wonderful start to the day with having 2 Great Horned Owls calling back and forth, and having deer snort. We had 2 rare county bird sightings, including White-winged Scoters and a Dunlin...

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Bill & Claudia in Cedar Key FL

Circle Captain: William Ahrens

Circle Location: Cedar Key, Florida (United States)

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Bill's Deck Sitters

Circle Captain: Bill Eddleman

Circle Location: Cape Girardeau, Missouri (United States)

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Bird Nerds

Circle Captain: Laurie & Dan Mooney

Circle Location: Plaquemine, Louisiana (United States)

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Birders Brunch Bunch

Circle Captain: Julie Woodcock

Circle Location: Manitowoc, Wisconsin (United States)

Highlight of the morning: At the edge of the marsh along the Little Manitowoc River, we were able to observe a Sora feeding, for approximately an hour and a half. Several time two Soras were in view feeding.

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Circle Captain: Joseph Devereaux

Circle Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin (United States)

We had a great turnout with many birdwatching participants who came and went during the day. Everyone contributed with at least one new sighting. The weather was cold and windy, but tolerable as it was dry...

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Birds By Day Bats By Night

Circle Captain: Selena And Mark Kiser

Circle Location: Monticello, Florida (United States)

The best sighting of the day was a group of 50 Wood Storks who decided to soar above us for 5 to 10 minutes. That's the most we've ever seen soaring at one time (they were acting like soaring American White Pelicans)...

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Birds-I-View Birders

Circle Captain: Steve Garr

Circle Location: Jefferson City, Missouri (United States)

The BIV Birders tallied 35 different species this year in our little "city garden". Highlights were: Golden-crowned Kinglet, Nashville Warbler, Purple Finch, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Gray Catbird, Common Nighthawk, Chimney Swift, Brown Thrasher, and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker...

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Circle Captain: Tony Belejack

Circle Location: Wallingford, Connecticut (United States)

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Boreal Birdometers

Circle Captain: Bill Tefft

Circle Location: Ely, Minnesota (United States)

Sparrows, rusty blackbirds, chickadees, loons, cormorants, crows, ravens and nuthatches present at bird feeders or on the lake throughout the day. Surprising absence of woodpeckers and jays. The only woodpeckers was pished in just before leaving for the day...

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Brumbaugh Birders

Circle Captain: Adam Zorn

Circle Location: Minerva, Ohio (United States)

Cold, rain, and wind at the site made for difficult conditions for a sedentary day of birding. Few birds flying over. Not many working the forest edge for insects as in past years. The weedy field and brush pile did attract a few species including a Lincoln's Sparrow - a first for the Nature Center.

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Bucktoe Early Birders

Circle Captain: Larry Lewis

Circle Location: Avondale, Pennsylvania (United States)

Very birdy day with lots of feeder and water feature activity

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Caroline Blue Birds

Circle Captain: Debby Bennett

Circle Location: Ridgely, Maryland (United States)

First cold day. Flurry of activity early morning, long lull mid morning until 4:30 pm. Missed many expected birds.

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Celery Fields Forever

Circle Captain: Stu Wilson

Circle Location: Sarasota, Florida (United States)

We had some sharp-eyed observers and recorded the highest number of species (66) in the 6-yr history of our circle.

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Chambers Lake Early Birders

Circle Captain: Larry Lewis

Circle Location: Coatesville, Pennsylvania (United States)

High water levels prevented the usual herons and shorebirds. Rain prevented owling and nighttime passerine calls from being heard. Not a good year for us.

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Coastal Virginia Wildlife Observatory

Circle Captain: Brian Taber

Circle Location: Northampton County, Virginia (United States)

76 American Kestrels, 72 Cooper's Hawks, 68 Sharp-shinned Hawks, 37 Great Blue Herons, 30 Cedar Waxwings, 5 White Ibises

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Compañeros de Observación de Aves

Circle Captain: Cameron Svoboda

Circle Location: Reynoldsburg, Ohio (United States)

23 species. 17 Wood Ducks.

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Copps and Robbins

Circle Captain: Andrea Robbins

Circle Location: Tuftonboro, New Hampshire (United States)

Today George and I held our third BIG SIT on the Eagle Scout’s viewing platform at the Copps Pond WMA in Tuftonboro. We counted as many species as we could see or hear from a 17 foot diameter circle...

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Dam Sitters

Circle Captain: Mindy Waldron

Circle Location: Jumping Branch, West Virginia (United States)

It was a cold day. The birds had settled in after an early morning flight. Later in the day, the weather improved with even a little sunshine.

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Circle Captain: Helen Wright-north

Circle Location: Dayton, Ohio (United States)

Our theme was Brisk Bird Brisket this year. Bill roasted a 10-pound grass-fed beef brisket overnight Friday. The group ate almost non-stop this year, due to the above-mentioned briskness. We saw not one warbler, not even the cold-tolerant yellow rumped...

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East Aurora Bird Club

Circle Captain: Mary Steuer

Circle Location: Grand Island, New York (United States)

Members of the East Aurora Bird Club met on the shores of the Niagara River at Beaver Island State Park on Grand Island, NY. The mixed habitat of wetlands, grasses/shrubs/trees, and riparian zone make this an ideal bird watching location...

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Farm Sitters

Circle Captain: Derek Stoner

Circle Location: Lancaster , Pennsylvania (United States)

A strong dawn chorus was echoed later in the morning between 10:00 and 11:00am with lots of songbirds activity in the pasture/meadow. Dozens of sparrows, kinglets, blackbirds, and thrushes zipped about and gathered the bounty of berries, seeds, and insects...

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Fredericksburg Flighty Flickers

Circle Captain: Sally Knight

Circle Location: Stafford, Virginia (United States)

The cold, showery start to the day, was brightened by an Eastern Screech-Owl flying over our heads and landing in a tree, next to our circle, where it proceeded to whinny softly to the early risers. By 9:00am we were ready for our camp breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausage, toast and hot chocolate once again lovingly cooked by Joyce and Mike Bathke...

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Circle Captain: Gary Cowell Jr.

Circle Location: Mifflin, Ohio (United States)

New GMAS BIG SIT species this year was a Peregrine falcon flyover powering it's way southbound about 8:30am. 4 southbound Sandhill cranes,4 Gadwall and 3 swallow species were other notables.

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Grosbreasted Rosebeaks

Circle Captain: Paul Fank

Circle Location: Dassel, Minnesota (United States)

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Hartford Audubon Society

Circle Captain: Brian Kleinman

Circle Location: South Winsdor, Connecticut (United States)

There is no better way to start your morning than sitting in a marsh during a gorgeous sunrise while watching the flowing flocks of WOOD DUCKS fly over. Jay Kaplan, my son Luke, and myself (Brian Kleinman) arrived at Station 43 in South Windsor a little after 6AM...

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Circle Captain: Roy Ickes

Circle Location: Washington, Pennsylvania (United States)

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Hoagland Heroes

Circle Captain: Joshua Potter

Circle Location: Shunk, Pennsylvania (United States)

Another beautiful weekend in Sullivan County to count birds! The count circle is about 30 yards from the Hoagland Branch of the Loyalsock River, and recent rains made for loud flowing water that made birding by ear difficult...

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HRDABRD at Middle Creek

Circle Captain: Bruce A Carl

Circle Location: Kleinfeltersville, Pennsylvania (United States)

A very productive day of birding at the HRDABRD Circle. Our 5th year participating that produced a new daily high count of (76) species identified. We added (10) new species to the BIG SIT list which now stands at 105...

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Jericho Juncos

Circle Captain: Maeve Kim

Circle Location: JERICHO, Vermont (United States)

We got to chat with several passersby and (we hope) get them interested in the birds around us. See photos at

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Juniata Juncos

Circle Captain: Chad Kauffman

Circle Location: Port Royal, Pennsylvania (United States)

slow day, but got some surprises and some misses.

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Kentish Plovers

Circle Captain: Walter Ellison

Circle Location: Rock Hall, Maryland (United States)

We returned to Bogles Wharf after a one-year effort back at the Tubby Cove viewing platform. All morning light rain made viewing a bit difficult but not impossible. Raptor and most other diurnal migration was delayed until after 1030...

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Lower Columbia Birders

Circle Captain: Mike Patterson

Circle Location: Seaside, Oregon (United States)

The most interesting species were an early on flyby flock of LAPLAND LONGSPURS and two, as yet, unidentified sea ducks that may be STELLER'S EIDERS. A single female wintered last year at the Cove...

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Circle Captain: Ron Clark

Circle Location: Huntersville, North Carolina (United States)

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Metro Munchers

Circle Captain: Joanna Pease

Circle Location: Harrison Township, Michigan (United States)

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Mighty Mighty Jizz Masters

Circle Captain: Jeff & Larry

Circle Location: Hennepin, Illinois (United States)

Great start to morning, Jeff and Larry arrived at 530am, Tom and Krzys were there just about 6am and all 4 of us got all three owl species. Trevor and Bronson were there early, and Vera and Dave arrived a bit later, when we had about 60 species tallied for the day...

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Mill Creek Wildlife Sanctuary

Circle Captain: Bob Lane

Circle Location: Canfield, Ohio (United States)

Our eleventh anniversary "Big Sit" was once again dedicated to Jim Dolan, who passed away in July 2016. Jim an avid outdoorsman, naturalist, and birder, initiated and captained our first "Big Sit" back in 2008...

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Missisquoi Marsh Mellows

Circle Captain: Rich Kelley

Circle Location: Swanton, Vermont (United States)

Pretty productive day, although the weather wasn't exactly comfortable to be sitting out. Highlight of the day was a Sandhill Crane flying over, which is rare for the refuge and the first documented sighting at this location...

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Moody Flews

Circle Captain: Greg Whittaker

Circle Location: Galveston, Texas (United States)

Most birds observed feeding on the north marsh area. 2 birds with difficult IDs from the sit location were identified prior to the sit during my morning property survey - birds were seen from the sit location and size/activity used as ID (Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Palm Warbler)...

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Moon-Farm Nature Group

Circle Captain: Marta Coleman

Circle Location: Fulton, Kentucky (United States)

First light 6:36am CT sunrise 7:02, sunset 6:23 last light 6:49. Overcast all day. WNW winds 1mph gusting to 6mph. Humidity 84%. After having temperatures in the upper 80's within the last 10 days the colder temperatures were at first welcome...

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Nature Center at Shaker Lakes

Circle Captain: Julie West

Circle Location: Cleveland, Ohio (United States)

We were joined by several new people.

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Circle Captain: Meg Kolodick

Circle Location: Oil City, Pennsylvania (United States)

Five to seven stalwart participants were present, despite downpours.

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Circle Captain: Andrea Robbins

Circle Location: Rye, New Hampshire (United States)

Our 1st BIG SIT held at the southern edge of Odiorne Point State Park in Rye, NH, near the 1st pull off south of the park. Observers George and Andrea Robbins. Temp was 46. Our Big Sit day began at 4:48 am...

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Circle Captain: Russ Titus

Circle Location: Unadilla, Georgia (United States)

Great weather. There was a fair amount of movement. Next year will take the day off from work!

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Circle Captain: Chad Witko

Circle Location: Peterborough, New Hampshire (United States)

Barred Owl was the first bird of the day, calling at 6:11am. The wind dissipated in the afternoon after being a little breezy for much of the day.

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Pishing in the Wind

Circle Captain: Jim Royer

Circle Location: Los Osos, California (United States)

We started our 22nd Elfin Forest Big Sit before daylight and already had 73 species by 8am. 18 counters took shifts on what turned out to be a beautiful day, as we perched above the Morro Bay Estuary. The receding and advancing tide brought many birds into view below and the breeze blew in a few migrants and raptors by at eye level...

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Circle Captain: Jim Flanagan

Circle Location: Spring Mills, Pennsylvania (United States)

A return to Muddy Paws Marsh after a year at Coburn Park due to a restoration project. We were glad to have a nice result after the project and expect the sightings to increase as the restoration project settles...

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Circle Captain: Larry Basden

Circle Location: Hattiesburg, Mississippi (United States)

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QVAS Bird Buddies

Circle Captain: Eric Eichorn

Circle Location: Meriden, Connecticut (United States)

A few warblers and ending with a Pied-billed Grebe - OK

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Richmond Audubon Society

Circle Captain: Ellison Orcutt

Circle Location: Richmond, Virginia (United States)

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Riverbound Farm

Circle Captain: Eric Eichorn

Circle Location: Cheshire, Connecticut (United States)

Our first "Big Sit" at Riverbound Farm Sanctuary, near the Pollinator garden. No body of water, semi shaded with some sky viewing.

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Robbins Deck

Circle Captain: Andrea Robbins

Circle Location: Pittsfield, New Hampshire (United States)

We got rained out at our morning circle location, so I did this simple, home circle for the afternoon.

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Rollins Raptors

Circle Captain: Beau Schaefer

Circle Location: grayslake, Illinois (United States)

Canvasback, Common Nighthawk hunting over pond at noon, 4 point blank Merlins (3 perched), barking saw-whet owl/screech owl, hermit Thrush, Brown Creeper, YB Sapsucker.

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Circle Captain: Al Guarente

Circle Location: Media, Pennsylvania (United States)

The short story is that we found 57 species from 5am to 6pm. Rain early didn’t help. Either did the county cross country championships that flooded the search area with 1500 people from 1-5pm. But hey, we got what we got!

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Sandy Hook Half Mooners

Circle Captain: Rob And Lisa Ann Fanning

Circle Location: Sandy Hook, Highland, New Jersey (United States)

Shout out to Pat Belardo for being an anchor of the team, and his great spotting. This year, we brought the party back to the Spermaceti Cove Boardwalk! New birds for our team this year (10): Rock Pigeon, Yellow-Billed Cuckoo, Lesser Yellowlegs, Common Loon, Red-Bellied Woodpecker, Blue-headed Vireo, Brown Creeper, Nelson's Sparrow, Cape May Warbler, Pine Warbler...

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sarcelle soucrourou

Circle Captain: Patrick Brisse

Circle Location: Tucker, Georgia (United States)

Slow day, no new species after 3:30PM, as usual most of the activity was in the morning

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SASsy Seawatchers

Circle Captain: Jennifer Rycenga

Circle Location: Pescadero, California (United States)

86 total species was an excellent total, especially given the good weather which reduced migration. Very busy out to sea; little change through the day on the ponds. We loved hearing both Virginia Rail and Sora...

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Sawmill Preserve

Circle Captain: Rich Chyinski

Circle Location: Salem , Connecticut (United States)

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Scrub J-oakers

Circle Captain: Hugh Kingery

Circle Location: Franktown, Colorado (United States)

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Shaver's Creek

Circle Captain: Doug Wentzel

Circle Location: Petersburg, Pennsylvania (United States)

Our 11th Big Sit was 2 shy of our high count! First bird was a Barred Owl at 12:30 am, last bird recorded was an Osprey -- raptor bookends.

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South Meadowlarks

Circle Captain: Neil Zimmerman

Circle Location: Seattle, Washington (United States)

Fantastic weather. No rain which for us in WA, that is always a big plus. We start out at 5:30 with the hopes of picking up the Barn Owls who nest in or near the park but no luck. I hate getting up early but I love being up early...

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Spring Creek Prairie Audubon Center

Circle Captain: Jason St. Sauver

Circle Location: Denton, Nebraska (United States)

birds hard to see - i'm sure more species around but stayed tucked in due to the weather...but we did ok for what we could see moving around

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Stone Mt Hawkwatch

Circle Captain: Jon Kauffman

Circle Location: Allensville, Pennsylvania (United States)

Generally a slow day at the watch but there was a significant movement of GCKI (16) and WBNU (13). Was hoping for more diversity in raptors.

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Circle Captain: Ted Drozdowski

Circle Location: Waxahachie, Texas (United States)

First of all I want to give a huge "Thank you" to the ten or so people who came out to the big sit despite a horrible forecast. This was truly a team effort and I am grateful for each participant's commitment to the tradition of the big sit...

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Circle Captain: James Reed

Circle Location: Lewes, Delaware (United States)

Overall, hundreds of DC Cormorants, dozens of Black Scoters, minimum of 300 Tree Swallows. Seas were very calm, and just a light breeze out of the west, so very few raptors.

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Swamp Sitters

Circle Captain: Janet Stadelmeier

Circle Location: Basking Ridge, New Jersey (United States)

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Table Rock

Circle Captain: Scott Stegenga

Circle Location: Pickens, South Carolina (United States)

Good bird activity; 34 species by 9:37am. Five species between 1:57pm - 2:17pm. Last species(Mourning Dove) 7:06pm.

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Takoma Parked

Circle Captain: Tim Guida

Circle Location: Takoma Park, Maryland (United States)

Good migration activity after the early morning rains. Several Purple Finches calling overhead, one stopped to eat Ash seeds. Movement of Flickers and Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers. A trickle of raptors throughout, mostly ones or twos...

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The Kickapoo Valley Birding Club

Circle Captain: Barbara Duerksen

Circle Location: La Farge, Wisconsin (United States)

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The Lakers

Circle Captain: Carolyn Fischer

Circle Location: Clear Lake, Iowa (United States)

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The Montour Merlins

Circle Captain: Lauren Shaffer

Circle Location: Danville, Pennsylvania (United States)

A tern and two flying shorebirds were not identified in the early light and rain. Lots of Robins and Blue Jays feeding in the hedgerow!

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The Woodbinoculars

Circle Captain: Rick Sussman

Circle Location: Woodbine, Maryland (United States)

Two new species for our cumulative list (now at 69 species), Mallard and Black-throated Green Warbler. 5 Purple Finches at the feeders were a nice surprise, as was a flyby Red-breasted Nuthatch. And an adult Bald Eagle is always nice!

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TNP big sit

Circle Captain: Brandon Swayser

Circle Location: Schnecksville, Pennsylvania (United States)

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TPR Birder

Circle Captain: Linette Mansberger

Circle Location: New Oxford, Pennsylvania (United States)

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Circle Captain: Jennifer Snyder

Circle Location: Hodgenville, Kentucky (United States)

Surrounded by woods, pasture/farmland, and fencerows the stage was set. The woods contain Slippery Elm, Walnut, Tulip Poplar, and Gum trees. The yard had mature oaks and a great Bracken Brown Magnolia tree that was a virtual magnet for songbirds and warblers...

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Circle Captain: Keeli Marvel

Circle Location: Provo, Utah (United States)

Lots of duck hunters coming and going.

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Wapiti Watchers

Circle Captain: Patrick Englehardt

Circle Location: Winchendon, Massachusetts (United States)

It rained on and off all day, and at one point it even hailed, but that didn't keep people from enjoying the day. We had 29 people come to the circle on and off throughout the day, and during the evening we fired up the pizza oven and had some pizza and watched for birds...

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Washtenaw Wingnuts

Circle Captain: Don Chalfant

Circle Location: Whitmore Lake, Michigan (United States)

65 species this year was a 21-year high. Thanks to all those who helped make this a very successful Sit.

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West Fairview Mergansers

Circle Captain: Vern Gauthier

Circle Location: Enola, Pennsylvania (United States)

With the river running high we did not expect to see much in the way of waterfowl and shorebirds. This proved to be true with fewer species of waterfowl than last year and no species of shorebirds. The best bird of the day was the Common Tern which was seen early in the morning...

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