BirdTrax: Latest Sightings

The 26th Annual Christmas Bird Count - Wednesday 27th December 2000

The weather so far this winter has been consistently wild to say the least. Cold fronts have been lining up one after another and zipping through the local area bringing days of rain and high winds. So with only a couple of reasonable (not in any way perfect) birding days occurring during the three week period of the 2000-2001 count, the fact that the count was able to be undertaken at all was most fortunate. The average temperature range during the 10 or more hours taken to complete the Bermuda Audubon Societies annual Christmas Bird Counts for the last 26 years has been 63-70°F and invariably there has been light winds and a fair amount of sun - ideal conditions for counting birds! Twelve birders in 10 parties braved cool temperatures (57.7-64°F), blustery winds (gusts up to 30 knots) and wet conditions to complete the 26th count. They were given some insight as to the conditions that many counters in the northern USA and Canada deal with regularly - and of course we saw no snow or ice! Nevertheless, although the promised sunny breaks for December 27th were few and far between and the isolated showers became more frequent during the afternoon, we did not do too badly to get a count of 84 species (the average being 88).

There were no real surprises even though Steven DeSilva’s Northern Shrike had not been recorded on count day before. Unfortunately many species known to be on Bermuda during the period managed to stay out of sight. One - the wintering Peregrine Falcon at the airport - was later to eat one of the two feral Budgerigars recorded there by Steven DeSilva! Other highlights include 7 Least Sandpipers found by Dave Wallace at Westover Farm - a new maxima for this species. The Brant at the St. George's Dairy was the second CBC listing for this small goose. 11 Lesser Black-backed Gulls eclipsed the old record by 4, while the 17 Whimbrels at the airport matched last years record count. 2 Purple Gallinules (Bruce Lohran/Jeremy Maderios) increased the maxima and the number of counts for this rather rare species by one. Jeremy’s Kentucky Warbler in Smiths Parrish was only the second one to make the count. Missing after 15 consecutive CBCs was the “Spittal Pond Flamingo”. This bird had escaped captivity at the Aquarium in February 1985 with several others when workmen felled a big ficus tree in the compound and it remained free after the others were taken back into custody. It was joined on Spittal Pond by another escapee in December 1986 and they remained inseparable until September 1995. Results of the Bermuda CBC are available to everyone at

Longtail in flight Bermuda


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Bluebird in flight, worm in mouth, bluebird box


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Cahow in flight Bermuda


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Cockroach Island Bermuda, Audubon Nature Reserve Bermuda

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BHS building Bluebird boxes

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Photos courtesy of Andrew Dobson, Paul Watson, Chris Burville, Ras Mykkal, Jennifer Gray, Rosalind Wingate, Rick Slaughter and others.

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The Bermuda Audubon Society
P.O. Box HM 1328
Hamilton HM FX