Monday, July 20, 2015

2015 BIG YEAR - May Update

May 2015

This is the fifth monthly summary of my 2015 CONDO BIG YEAR!!!



Red dot is my condo building



Red mark is the blue area defined in the first map


Click for - BIG YEAR RULES


The birds! (new species in bold)-

Canada Goose - 250
Wood Duck - 30
Gadwall - 7
American Black Duck - 1
Mallard - 158
Northern Shoveler - 7
Redhead - 4
Greater Scaup - 22
Lesser Scaup - 27
Surf Scoter - 170
White-winged Scoter - 1028
Long-tailed Duck - 1681
Hooded Merganser - 2
Red-breasted Merganser - 209
Ruddy Duck - 10
Wild Turkey - 2
Red-throated Loon - 7
Common Loon - 69
Horned Grebe - 2
Double-crested Cormorant - 1125
Great Blue Heron - 12
Great Egret - 1
Green Heron - 1
Black-crowned Night-Heron - 19
Turkey Vulture - 9
Osprey - 4
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 3
Cooper's Hawk - 4
Bald Eagle - 5
Broad-winged Hawk - 7
Red-tailed Hawk - 1
Black-bellied Plover - 5
Semipalmated Plover - 2
Killdeer - 15
Spotted Sandpiper - 7
Solitary Sandpiper - 1
Lesser Yellowlegs - 52
Whimbrel - 45
Dunlin - 156
Semipalmated Sandpiper - 17
Short-billed Dowitcher - 1
American Woodcock - 1
Bonaparte's Gull - 231
Little Gull - 2
Ring-billed Gull - 665
Herring Gull - 146
Great Black-backed Gull - 14
Caspian Tern - 195
Common Tern - 375
Rock Pigeon - 18
Mourning Dove - 40
Common Nighthawk - 1
Chimney Swift - 195
Ruby-throated Hummingbird - 17
Belted Kingfisher - 3
Red-headed Woodpecker - 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker - 2
Downy Woodpecker - 3
Northern Flicker - 13
American Kestrel - 1
Peregrine Falcon - 1
Eastern Wood-Pewee - 3
Alder Flycatcher - 1
Willow Flycatcher - 1
Great Crested Flycatcher - 1
Eastern Kingbird - 62
Warbling Vireo - 9
Red-eyed Vireo - 3 
Blue Jay - 2810
American Crow - 28
Fish Crow - 1
Horned Lark - 2
Northern Rough-winged Swallow - 114
Purple Martin - 66
Tree Swallow - 179
Bank Swallow - 438
Barn Swallow - 390
Cliff Swallow - 167
Black-capped Chickadee - 15
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher - 6
Ruby-crowned Kinglet - 5
Eastern Bluebird - 12
Swainson's Thrush - 1
Wood Thrush - 1
American Robin - 174
Gray Catbird - 2
Brown Thrasher - 1
Northern Mockingbird - 1
European Starling - 935
American Pipit - 2
Cedar Waxwing - 1839
Northern Waterthrush - 1
Tennessee Warbler - 4
Nashville Warbler - 12
Common Yellowthroat - 2
American Redstart - 8
Northern Parula - 1
Bay-breasted Warbler - 2
Blackburnian Warbler - 1
Yellow Warbler - 40
Chestnut-sided Warbler - 1
Blackpoll Warbler - 2
Palm Warbler - 13
Yellow-rumped Warbler - 77
Prairie Warbler - 1
Wilson's Warbler - 2
Chipping Sparrow - 56
Song Sparrow - 13
White-throated Sparrow - 14
White-crowned Sparrow - 8
Northern Cardinal - 13
Rose-breasted Grosbeak - 4
Indigo Bunting - 12
Bobolink - 26
Red-winged Blackbird - 3301
Eastern Meadowlark - 1
Rusty Blackbird - 20
Common Grackle - 1271
Brown-headed Cowbird - 511
Orchard Oriole - 2
Baltimore Oriol- 37
House Finch - 35
Purple Finch - 16
Pine Siskin - 259
American Goldfinch - 1700
House Sparrow - 65

Total species - 130

Total ebird checklists - 24

Best birds of the month: Prairie Warbler, Fish Crow, Whimbrels, Little Gulls, Red-headed Woodpecker,

Useless seasonal rarities: none really. Everything is "in season" in May!

Highlight "big year" birds: rarities aside - WILD TURKEY (!!!), Wood Thrush, Northern Mockingbird.. Lots really... That's May for ya.

Checklists of the month:

#1 - http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S23205779 (first decent dirunal migration of neotrop's)
#2 - http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S23627726 (shorebirds & a nice mix)
#3 - http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S23492338 (OBRC rare, condo rare, and a great day with m'lady)


Total species added to the big year this month: 55

Big year total to date: 168


Target species going forwards: June is off the table. Check back for the June into July update

eBird needs alerts - I missed some. House Wren, Swamp Sparrow, Veery, Canada Warbler, Scarlet Tanager, Field Sparrow, Eastern Towhee, Ovenbird, and more... Some of these could really sting come December...

KM driven: 0
KM flown: 0
KM by boat: 0
KM by train: 0
KM by helicopter: 0

(1 Kilometer = 0.621371192237334 Miles)


Previous summaries: January | February | March | | April 


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Thoughts:

It was May! It was awesome! A big year is a very serious commitment, and I may never forgive myself, but I clearly missed the best days of May. Some were unavoidable for "life" reasons. While others I totally broke down and went to Pelee to find some awesome rarities there instead...  Overall I probably missed the best 5-7 days of birding in the entire year. I may never forgive myself...

Anyways - it was my first taste of being at home and watching the morning migrations. It is much harder to ID birds in flight at my condo than, say, at the tip of Point Pelee. The light angle is worse and the birds are farther away, harder to predict and harder to find. Still, I was darn impressed with the haul including Red-bellied and Red-headed Woodpeckers, Orchard Orioles, Northern Mockingbird etc. I wasn't really sure what to expect, but there was just enough to really crank the list higher.

I also think I was quite lucky getting "condo-rare" birds. Wild Turkey was not on the radar. In no way, shape or form. Talk about excitement. I just can't get some "woodland" birds from the 17th floor, but I was impressed with my haul (N. Waterthrush, Wood & Swainson's Thrushes etc). Many of these birds were new for my all-time condo list, pushing it to 199!!!

Shorebirds put in a decent showing with 11 species. Considering I live on the shore of Lake Ontario, I'm always a bit surprised how FEW shorebirds I actually see... Hopefully I'll pull a few more species in the fall. June is a total write-off, so I'll worry about those fall birds later!



May 2nd


May 3rd


May 5th



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