Alachua Audubon Society

A chapter of the National Audubon Society

2018 GAINESVILLE CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT SUMMARY

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by Rex Rowan

 

GAINESVILLE CBC SETS A NORTH AMERICAN RECORD! The 175 species recorded on the 61st annual Gainesville Christmas Bird Count on December 16th was the largest total ever for an inland North American CBC in the entire 119-year-history of the Count. (The actual number was 176 species, but the CBC doesn’t count introduced Whooping Cranes.)

We saw three species that had never before been recorded on the Gainesville Count (Egyptian Goose, Chuck-will’s-widow, and Snail Kite). We set new high counts for 19 (!) species.

Two species in particular deserve mention:

Though a set of Snail Kite eggs was collected in Micanopy in 1919, there were no additional local sightings until 1996, and only four between 1996 and 2017. But in 2018 they moved onto Paynes Prairie – they even nested! – and on this year’s Christmas Count, Jonathan Mays counted 29 on the roost at one time! For a bird that had never been recorded on the Gainesville Count, it was a pretty impressive debut!

The Limpkin count was even more impressive. Between our first Count in 1957 and the establishment of Sweetwater Wetlands Park, Gainesville’s highest-ever CBC total was 7 in 1987. But Sweetwater and the arrival of exotic apple snails changed everything. Last year’s total was 235, the highest CBC total ever recorded anywhere in the United States. Could we match it this year? We didn’t match it – we smashed it! We more than doubled it, counting 544 Limpkins!

Here are the results. An asterisk (*) indicates a record high count. A double asterisk (**) indicates a new species for the Count:

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck 1,340
Egyptian Goose 1**
Muscovy Duck 228
Wood Duck 654
Gadwall 17
American Wigeon 7
Mallard 6
Mottled Duck 165
Blue-winged Teal 613
Northern Shoveler 14
Northern Pintail 24
Green-winged Teal 596
Canvasback 1
Redhead 2
Ring-necked Duck 3,431*
Lesser Scaup 16
Bufflehead 48*
Common Goldeneye 2
Hooded Merganser 100
Ruddy Duck 113
Northern Bobwhite 1
Wild Turkey 34
Pied-billed Grebe 128
Horned Grebe 2
Rock Pigeon 23
Eurasian Collared-Dove 2
Common Ground-Dove 3
White-winged Dove 2
Mourning Dove 224
Chuck-will’s-widow 1**
Eastern Whip-poor-will 4
Vaux’s Swift 5
Ruby-throated Hummingbird 1
King Rail 7
Virginia Rail 6
Sora 34
Purple Gallinule 10
Common Gallinule 1,318*
American Coot 3,499
Limpkin 544*
Sandhill Crane 3,281
Whooping Crane 2
Killdeer 255
Dunlin 11
Least Sandpiper 23
Long-billed Dowitcher 3
American Woodcock 2
Wilson’s Snipe 277
Spotted Sandpiper 9*
Lesser Yellowlegs 4
Greater Yellowlegs 23
Bonaparte’s Gull 26
Laughing Gull 5
Ring-billed Gull 316
Herring Gull 2
Forster’s Tern 2
Common Loon 4
Wood Stork 120
Double-crested Cormorant 857
Anhinga 592
American White Pelican 62
American Bittern 17
Least Bittern 11*
Great Blue Heron 244
Great Egret 309
Snowy Egret 475*
Little Blue Heron 493
Tricolored Heron 129
Cattle Egret 245
Green Heron 48*
Black-crowned Night-Heron 142
White Ibis 2,587
Glossy Ibis 405
Black Vulture 546
Turkey Vulture 781
Osprey 8
Northern Harrier 38
Sharp-shinned Hawk 8
Cooper’s Hawk 17
Bald Eagle 100
Snail Kite 29**
Red-shouldered Hawk 253*
Red-tailed Hawk 71
Barn Owl 2
Eastern Screech-Owl 18
Great Horned Owl 31
Barred Owl 50
Belted Kingfisher 100*
Red-headed Woodpecker 24
Red-bellied Woodpecker 408
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 115*
Downy Woodpecker 151
Northern Flicker 56
Pileated Woodpecker 130
American Kestrel 52
Merlin 4
Peregrine Falcon 1
Ash-throated Flycatcher 2
Least Flycatcher 1
Eastern Phoebe 548
Vermilion Flycatcher 1
Loggerhead Shrike 23
White-eyed Vireo 100
Blue-headed Vireo 128
Blue Jay 264
American Crow 630
Fish Crow 158
crow, sp. 42
Tree Swallow 1,294
Carolina Chickadee 351
Tufted Titmouse 450*
Red-breasted Nuthatch 1
Brown-headed Nuthatch 12
House Wren 233
Sedge Wren 34
Marsh Wren 45
Carolina Wren 521*
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 723
Golden-crowned Kinglet 1
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 525
Eastern Bluebird 224
Hermit Thrush 42
American Robin 2,396
Gray Catbird 256
Brown Thrasher 14
Northern Mockingbird 122
European Starling 30
Cedar Waxwing 285
House Sparrow 30
American Pipit 81
House Finch 40
Purple Finch 1
Pine Siskin 7
American Goldfinch 967*
Eastern Towhee 66
Bachman’s Sparrow 1
Chipping Sparrow 1,173*
Clay-colored Sparrow 2*
Field Sparrow 4
Vesper Sparrow 31
Savannah Sparrow 138
Grasshopper Sparrow 20*
Henslow’s Sparrow 4
Fox Sparrow 2
Song Sparrow 64
Lincoln’s Sparrow 1
Swamp Sparrow 266
White-throated Sparrow 21
White-crowned Sparrow 6
Yellow-breasted Chat 3*
Eastern Meadowlark 155
Baltimore Oriole 24
Red-winged Blackbird 7,266
Brown-headed Cowbird 759
Rusty Blackbird 5
Common Grackle 677
Boat-tailed Grackle 2,177
Ovenbird 6
Northern Waterthrush 7
Black-and-white Warbler 121
Tennessee Warbler 1
Orange-crowned Warbler 96
Nashville Warbler 1
Common Yellowthroat 259
American Redstart 3
Northern Parula 5
Palm Warbler 1,097
Pine Warbler 230
Yellow-rumped Warbler 1,810
Yellow-throated Warbler 65*
Prairie Warbler 6
Black-throated Green Warbler 1
Summer Tanager 3
Northern Cardinal 743
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 1
Indigo Bunting 2
Painted Bunting 12

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