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15,000+ birds spotted in Mathews count

Mark Sopko of the Mathews Audubon Christmas Bird Count captured this image of a yellow-rumped warbler taken near the Mathews Volunteer Rescue Squad building on Jan. 5.

A total of 15,507 birds of 102 species were spotted in the Mathews Audubon Christmas Bird Count, which was held on Jan. 5 in Mathews County and the Ware Neck area of Gloucester. Forty-three volunteers took part.
Among the birds spotted were 63 bald eagles. There was one sighting of eight northern bobwhites in the Winter Harbor Sector. A good number of wild turkeys were reported. American crows (697) and eastern bluebirds (335) were abundant, said compiler Joyce McKelvey.
The New Point Sector sighted one purple sandpiper and a least sandpiper. These have been photographed and well documented.
There were a low number of tundra swan this count along with a real shortage of diving ducks. There were large numbers of Canada geese (1,274) and bufflehead (2,840) and ruddy ducks (3,710).
“It was a good day weather wise, but v...

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