Friday, March 2, 2012

February Bird Stats

1. rtHAWK-kab Red-tailed Hawk in my backyard 2-2-12

February was definitely the Month of the Hawks in my backyard. Of the 29 days in the month this year I counted a red-tailed hawk in the yard on 9 days. I saw the bird there so many times that I soon tired of taking pictures of it!

2. juv RThawk-kab Juvenile Red-tailed Hawk in yard 2-12-12

While the red-tailed hawk seemed to help keep the gray squirrels away…

3. COHAJuv-kab Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk in my backyard 2-20-12

…the arrival of this Cooper’s Hawk scared off all my little songbirds. Up until this bird showed up I was seeing 20 to 30 House sparrows a day and numerous other songbirds. On the first day of the GBBC I counted 20 species in my yard! After this Cooper’s caught and killed at least one if not more birds in my yard my counts have definitely dropped off. I am back to counting 9 to 10 species a day and often less. The birds are skittish now and do not hang around for long and they fly away at the slightest movement. For many days I did not even see even one House Sparrow. With snow from yesterday’s storm still covering the ground today I saw about 6 House Sparrows along with a cardinal, juncos, chickadees, downy woodpeckers, mourning doves, and white-throated sparrows.

4. fNOCA-kab Female Cardinal in my backyard 2-2-12


5. CANGnCT-kab Canada Goose in Dayville, CT 2-22-12

While February was the month of the Great Backyard Bird Count, I also managed to count birds in 2 other New England States. Since I take frequent trips to Connecticut to visit family, this is not hard, and since I only live 5 miles from New Hampshire and often drive there to shop, it is not hard to go birding there either.  I make it a point to count the birds in the parking lots of the mall and the department stores while I am there as well as stopping at the Geremonty Marsh when I can. I usually go to Maine at least once a month also to visit Gus’ family but this month I was a bit busy with my Mom and did not go with Gus when he went, so, no bird counts form there!

6. AMRO-kab American Robin in Sacred Heart Park Andover, MA 2-6-12

Seeing these robins in Sacred Heart Park certainly gives me hope for the arrival of spring, but what is really telling is the arrival of Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles! I saw my both species at the bog for the first time this year on February 29th. Last year I did not count them in my neighborhood until March 18th for the grackle and March 20th for the Red-winged Blackbird! By reporting all my counts to eBird I am able to track this data whenever I want to because eBird keeps track of all my bird lists for me. My bird counts also help the scientists and the birds. As the community of eBirders continues to grow, I hope you will consider counting birds in your backyard or favorite patch as well! To learn how, just click on the link: About eBird.

Here are my eBird stats for the Month of February

  Life Year Month

Total Species

423 73 45

Total checklists

4032 306 122

States :



166 71 38


136 37 34


108 18 0

New Hampshire

62 8 8

Sometime soon I am hoping to add Vermont to this list!


  1. Hi Katie...Nice photo close up of the Red Tailed Hawk ...I have been seeing one alot,but always at a distance ...huge wing span..: }!!!
    The Hawks sure can put a damper on the feeder visitors!!
    You do a great job keeping up with those
    I would like to see the Snow Buntings ..seems so many people are seeing them, but don't know what they are, and have no desire to keep track...even my daughter who lives in Linneus (North) sees them on the wires on here way to work..grrr!! If I went there there would be none to be found lol!!

  2. The Cooper's hawk has been slowing down birds at the feeder here too.

  3. Great photos! Hope you won't be missing those House Sparrows.
    Nice Stats!
    Hoping one day I will be this organized.:)

  4. love all your pictures!
    i'm not a 'counter'...but sure am impressed by your numbers!! wow!!

  5. We have a juvenile Cooper's Hawk and a Grey Hawk who come to our yard to try to capture the birds pretty often. The Cooper's flew into my back glass door chasing one! He was ruffled but otherwise OK. I have posted about him a few times on my blog, but my pictures aren't great. The Cooper's actually has gone INSIDE the bush to get the songbirds! I was surprised. In spite of their activity, and that of a roadrunner that I also discovered lays in wait in that bush to capture and kill the songbirds, I have probably 30 or 40 birds in that bush at one time! They only leave the yard to go get water, it seems. They are sparrows, house finches and goldfinches mostly, oh and doves, but I do occasionally see something else.

  6. Grammie G, I have been trying to find the snow buntings all winter also to no avail so you and I are in the same boat!

    Gaelyn, if I have to I will try taking my feeders down for a few days in hopes that the hawk moves on. I have not seen it recently though.

    Jean, I do not miss the House sparrows!

    Laura, it is okay if you are not a counter. You are an artist and you enjoy their beauty. that is what matters most!

    Marie, a grey hawk in your yard? That is impressive! I use to see the Cooper's dive into my brittle bush after the birds when I lived there. AZ is so rich in wildlife. It is a wonderful place to live!


Welcome to my nest! I hope you will enjoy spending time here with me and the birds. Thank you for your comments. I will try to get back to you as soon as I get back from counting more birds.