State College CBC preview

This coming Sunday is the State College CBC here in central PA and I am really looking forward to getting out and documenting the winter bird life. Alex and I volunteered to cover both the Bear Meadows/Alan Seeger route as well as the new Rockview fields recently purchased by Penn State. This will be a lot of area to cover in one day but there are a lot of potentially interesting birds that we could encounter.

Bear Meadows and Alan Seeger are good locations to find winter finches such as crossbills, evening grosbeaks and redpolls. We will also be looking for owls in those areas, targeting Northern Saw-whet Owl, a bird I still would like to find for my Centre County list. Other interesting birds we will target include Red-breasted Nuthatch and Yellow-rumped Warbler.

Yellow-rumped Warbler (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

At the Rockview fields, we will be looking for flocks of passerines. A recent survey found Fox, Savannah and Field Sparrow, as well as Hermit Thrush, all birds which can be easy to miss on this CBC. Other possibilities in this unique grassland/shrub/scrub area are Rough-legged Hawk, Northern Harrier and, if we are really lucky, a Short-eared Owl.

Rough-legged Hawk- Rockview fields

Below is a list of records for the State College CBC 1999-2009. Birds with a 0 were only seen during count week but not during the actual day of the Christmas Bird Count.

Common Name19992000200120022003200420052006200720082009Grand Total
American Black Duck1312312161514361
American Coot16133317
American Crow970803100812869898131078129724052333115614138
American Goldfinch24578171148189172153143156586732114
Green-winged Teal366318
American Kestrel2014211779613101012139
American Pipit33
American Robin15412871043164611886401
American Tree Sparrow230711011069069104749288901115
Bald Eagle11114
Barred Owl61110211
Belted Kingfisher201016102141217639119
Black-capped Chickadee6263055673052463873683031162701343627
Blue Jay2732873882962372912692631581621612785
Brown Creeper1711138410157121107
Brown-headed Cowbird542710926812191
Canada Goose6503254466331132623858679558103862
Carolina Wren4954895929291967153715462
Cedar Waxwing1871101649712451412916827701023
Chipping Sparrow34310
Common Grackle1251371267
Common Loon11
Common Merganser2417
Common Raven176191310251512512134
Common Redpoll2013
Common Snipe2114
Common Yellowthroat11
Cooper's Hawk711994916669692
Dark-eyed Junco8874816074825947157456652905273263862
Downy Woodpecker92651364361756594387535779
Eastern Bluebird107731014053303614010316980932
Eastern Meadowlark55
Eastern Phoebe112
Eastern Screech-Owl5162274451551
Eastern Towhee3216
European Starling2266393340052176195835502314392814223979374533276
Evening Grosbeak11
Field Sparrow3216
Fish Crow2847320562042206215268
Fox Sparrow311611
Golden Eagle0011
Golden-crowned Kinglet9848318111042112960411
Gray Catbird12212311
Great Blue Heron31274334435518190131284
Great Horned Owl3904204123
Hairy Woodpecker361929141122191911222204
Hermit Thrush1341655216314170
Herring Gull11
Hooded Merganser11
Horned Lark243992540022715014960
House Finch45153569013913413214518494236712811
House Sparrow9805687007567213475827021417145236734
House Wren22
Lapland Longspur11
Lesser Scaup213
Long-eared Owl00
Long-tailed Duck00
Mourning Dove3042706113425362013667083433386144633
Mute Swan2232110
Northern Flicker17212391080
Northern Cardinal240262270213265205165250751581042207
Northern Flicker10771015554
Northern Goshawk112
Northern Harrier453437228
Northern Mockingbird4152454923414472285124470
Northern Pintail112
Northern Saw-whet Owl11125
Northern Shoveler1001
Pied-billed Grebe11
Pileated Woodpecker22102459712153116124
Pine Siskin2216040100113336
Purple Finch21843521632
Red-bellied Woodpecker4436483131494946163917406
Red-breasted Merganser00
Red-breasted Nuthatch1035314813475171
Red-headed Woodpecker10113
Red-shouldered Hawk11211219
Red-tailed Hawk5144483939675052365128505
Red-winged Blackbird8302118160
Ring-billed Gull12260112
Ring-necked Duck121116
Ring-necked Pheasant221117
Rock Dove818581174825295676
Rock Pigeon1096746700123180585213296759
Rough-legged Hawk2322510511132
Ruby-crowned Kinglet011218114
Ruddy Duck123
Ruffed Grouse106636912548
Rusty Blackbird30131
Sharp-shinned Hawk5512235316235
Snow Bunting3030
Snow Goose (white form)123
Song Sparrow964450392729875130327492
sparrow sp.22
Swamp Sparrow1227243131338
Tufted Titmouse163175209150179175136150621681001667
White-breasted Nuthatch1998218590861299913259135591255
White-crowned Sparrow5412271032485
White-throated Sparrow32046933627624438933322596200872975
White-winged Crossbill15354
Wild Turkey94133814412570151
Wilson's Snipe101
Winter Wren7533533130
Wood Duck21216
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker325223422833
Yellow-rumped (Myrtle) Warbler11
Yellow-rumped Warbler22
Total number of species7369826062677068597847