The Christmas Bird Count results are in

Cathy Moser
Saturday, January 25, 2020
The Christmas Bird Count results are in

This rough-legged hawk patiently withstood Lewistown birders snapping his picture during the 2019 Christmas Bird Count.

Photo courtesy of Cathy Moser

Every winter since 1900, the Christmas Bird Count has encouraged bird enthusiasts across North America to record the activity of birds in their area during the Christmas season. On Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019, the Lewistown Birding Bunch answered the call to go afield and count birds, and submit data to the National Audubon Society. The highlight of the 2019 count was a high count of blue jays, seven, which represents the recent influx of the jays into Central Montana. A total of 1,078 birds were counted. The total number of species counted was 33, five fewer than recorded during the 2018 count. The average number of species counted across the years is 34.

Fun facts about the Lewistown Christmas Bird Count

There have been 37 Christmas Bird Counts in Lewistown. The first count took place in December 1977. Only four species have been reported on every count: bald eagle, magpie, mallard and black-capped chickadee. Four more species were counted in 36 of the years: roughlegged hawk, pheasant, feral pigeon and house sparrow. The lowest number of species was 12, counted on Dec. 15, 1979. The highest number was 55 on Dec. 14, 1996.

Cathy Moser is a member of the Lewistown Birding Bunch.

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