WILDLIFE WATCHING -- A group of Coeur d'Alene Audubon Society members has a little contest to see how many species they can see in a year from their homes. You can bet the binoculars and spotting scopes are always on hand.
While all members of the club set a record of 209 species in 2012 for their Kootenai County big year, this group of 10 couples chipped in a whopping 110 species without venturing beyond their back yards.
Click here to see the report of the species they recorded.
Read on for a summary of their findings compiled by member Dough Ward.
This year (2012) was a good one for birding in Kootenai County with a record number (209) of species seen during the year! While our yard watchers didn't break any records this year, an impressive 110 species were seen in and around our collective yards. We had 9 contributors scattered throughout the area with some in town, and others on our lakes which led to a wide range of birds, from Tundra Swans to Pacific Wrens, being seen. There were 7 species seen at everyone's place (Calliope Hummingbird, Northern Flicker, Black-capped Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, American Robin, Dark-eyed Junco, and Pine Siskin) while a whopping 25 were only seen in one yard.
The Hanson's had the only American White Pelican as well as a nice Bullock's Oriole, the Sturts' turned in a couple of grebes (Horned & Western), the Buchler's had Northern Harrier and Common Loon (in the bird bath...just kidding), a Gray Jay showed up at the Moen's, and the Ward's had an immature Chestnut-sided Warbler. In addition to these single yard birds, several other nice ones showed like the Waring's and Zagar's and their Bohemian Waxwings, Killdeer at the Callen's, the Sheridan's getting one of only two Brewer's Blackbirds reported, and Northern Pygmy-Owls found by the Hanson's and Buchler's. There were a few surprise too. Ruby-crowned Kinglets were only seen in two yards, but Common Redpolls showed up in four - I'll take that trade.
So if you haven't already, start keeping track for 2013 so we can all see what shows up in your yard this year.