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100+ species tallied at bird count

More than 100 species of birds were tallied during Sunday’s 30th annual Mathews Audubon Christmas Bird Count. According to event coordinator Joyce McKelvey, Sunday’s weather was favorable for bird count participants, but was not optimal for birds to be out and about soaring above.

She said 40 people, both local and from out of town, participated in the count. Some, she said, gathered well before dawn to listen for owls and American Woodcocks. “It proved to be very quiet and still only one or two of each were heard,” McKelvey said. 

In all, approximately 16,753 birds were sighted in all of the sectors. She said species of note in the tally were the low numbers of Eastern Bluebirds and Yellow-rumpled (Myrtle) Warblers. “There were a good number of Bald Eagles,” she said, with 33 being reported so far. Also, two Ospreys, two Willets and five Evening Grosbeaks were observed Sunday, which are all out of season. Twelve Least Sandpipers were also rep...

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