Count of Winter Birds of Kodiak Island Coming Up

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101209.townsend-solitaire.jpg

A Townsend Solitaire – the first ever recorded on Kodiak Island – was spotted recently in the Wooldand Acres, Mill Bay area. Photo by Rich MacIntosh

Jay Barrett/KMXT

The annual winter bird counts are starting up in just more than a week, but bird lovers can get a sneak peak Friday night at the Audubon Society’s meeting. There birder Rich MacIntosh will present a slide show featuring winter birds of Kodiak. It’ll also be an opportunity to get signed up to help with the two annual bird counts – the Kodiak count on December 18th and the Kalsin Bay and Chiniak count on January 2nd.

The Audubon Society meeting and MacIntosh’s presentation on the winter birds of Kodiak starts at 6:30Friday night at Kodiak College.

Winter – or Christmas – bird counts are coordinated nationwide by the National Audubon Society. They helps provide a snapshot of bird populations, distribution and migration. In many communities, participants gather together the morning of the count and are then split up into groups on the spot. MacIntosh says it’s done differently in Kodiak, where the various groups are arranged prior to counting day:

(Birding 1 :32 sec "We have two vessels … all different kinds of effort.")

Another category of bird-counters are those who observe bird feeders, oftentimes from the comfort of their own livingrooms:

(Birding 2 22 sec "We’re always looking for … feeders the merrier.")

MacIntosh said there seems to be a dearth of backyard birds this year, so he’d like to have as many counted as possible. He also said there are fewer berry-eating birds.

(Birding 3 32 sec "Some of those birds are American … week or so.")

We have a picture of the Townsend Solitaire, taken by MacIntosh, on our website, KMXT dot org.

(Birding 4 31 sec "It’s a bird that breeds … ring around the eye.")

The Kodiak bird count coming up next week will be conducted in a 15-mile radius around the city, while the January 2nd Kalsin-Chiniak count covers those areas and Pasagshak.

I’m Jay Barrett

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