Ahoy, bird-lovers!

Did ya bird blitz with ACRES last week? If you were perched in a preserve, binoculars fervently scanning the canopy, the brush, or waterside for a tail, a flutter, even a hint of feathered frenzy, you were not alone.

Logo by Yonder Clothing Co.

76 volunteer backyard birders and life-long bird watchers pitched in for ACRES second annual Bird Blitz, counting and reporting species on 21 preserves. Hooray! 

This year, Stockbridge Audubon returned, as did Riverbridge Electric – en force. Several individual birders hit the trails – some returning, some new. A partly new, partly returning team from Manchester Jr. Sr. High School worked the woods and wetlands of Wildwood.

Perhaps in a nod to some of our wonderfully named feathered friends, we’re a little excited to share team names like: Angie and Steve’s Excellent Adventure, Watson’s Watchers, Grateful Birders and Shepherd’s Flock, multiple generations of the Shepherd family.

Together, Bird Blitz participants helped to establish a baseline understanding. In time, future birders, perhaps including you, will help this data grow, possibly providing trends that future ACRES staff and scientists worldwide can analyze.

Bald Eagle by Dave Fox

Your results are in:  you spotted 91 species of birds, including such standouts and fan favorites as the Bald Eagle, Eastern Kingbird, Willow flycatcher, Northern Parula, Warbling Vireo, and the Pileated Woodpecker to name a few. In total, you helped count 955 birds. Yeow!

The final, confirmed species list is linked here: 2018 ACRES Bird Blitz Final Tally (PDF). Thank you for adding to ebird.org‘s online count species inventory.

If you counted birds and did not attend the after-party gathering, your patch is heading out by mail this week as a token of appreciation for your investment of talent and time. Thank you!

ACRES offers a hearty thank you to ACRES volunteer Carol Spallone for leading Birding 101 presentations at local libraries. And a big shout-out to area Audubon Society’s and Club for hosting pre-Blitz workshops: Mississenewa Audubon Club, Robert Cooper Audubon Society, South Bend-Elkhart Audubon Society, and Tippecanoe Audubon Society. Thank you for sharing your talents, time and joy.

The Indiana Audubon Society provided funding for Bird Blitz research through their Mumford-Keller grant. Wild Birds Unlimited, Riverview Nursery, and Yonder Clothing Co. provided, respectively, a cool logo and a sweet birdfeeder as a giveaway for the after party. You’re tops with us and your support protects land.

ACRES members protect 7,052 acres of local natural area and working land in the tristate area, forever. Explore more than 70 miles of trails, watch birds and other wildlife, take photographs, enjoy family time, get active and reflect on nature’s diversity, for free from dawn to dusk at a preserve near you. acreslandtrust.org/preserves. Connect with ACRES Land Trust at 260-637-2273, acreslandtrust.org or on Facebook at facebook.com/ACRES.LT

Happy trails!

 

 

Written by Lettie Haver