2016 Eugene Christmas Bird Count

Many Eugene Christmas Bird Count (ECBC) birders awoke Sunday morning, January 1, 2017, to a half inch of snow and cold weather. This was predicted but somewhat unexpected since many were outside three days before in short sleeve shirts and no jacket. Such is the life of Christmas Bird Count (CBC) participants all over North America.

Even with the poor weather and lousy driving conditions, 130 hardy bird watchers gathered with the 27 Team Leaders and took to the field to see all the birds possible within their designated areas. Combined, the teams walked 142 miles in 158 hours and drove 522 miles in 98 hours. Six teams went owling for 10 hours and covered 31 miles. 

Another 111 people decided to be Home Counters, and they reported 75 species. When these figures were added to the results of the field teams, a total of 131 species and 73,390 individual birds were seen this year. An additional 10 species were seen during Count Week. Check Dan Gleason’s report on the Christmas Bird Count page for the complete species list and total numbers of birds. 

At the end of the day, nearly 100 tired but happy birders gathered for the LCAS-sponsored Chili Feed to share stories and participate in the traditional countdown. They were treated to two large cakes in celebration of the 75th ECBC. All participants were given “lapel” pins with the image of the LCAS Mountain Quail logo on it along with the 75th anniversary lettering. The two cakes were decorated to match the pins. If you were on a team or a Home Counter and did not receive a pin, please attend one of the next three monthly LCAS programs to pick one up. If you cannot attend one of these meetings, please contact Dick at 541-343-8664 or maeveanddick@q.com with your mailing address. 

Allison Mickel prepared 10 gallons of homemade vegetarian chili for the group, which was served along with dinner rolls, chips and salad. Sandy Poinsett organized the rooms and food service supplies to make for a fun ending to a great day of birding. 

I want to thank Allison and Sandy for doing the Chili Feed, Robert Mertz for spearheading the clean-up, Herb Wisner for organizing the Home Counters, Dan Gleason for compiling the results and the 27 Team Leaders whose names appear below. Without the Team Leaders’ hard work of assembling their teams, guiding them all day and then reporting the results, the ECBC would not be the heart-warming event that it is. 

The results of this year’s ECBC will be entered into the 117-year record of all the CBCs around the continent. Results are used by scientists and researchers to assess changes in bird life over the past century. The results of all the CBCs (2,505 last year) are on the National Audubon Society’s website at christmasbirdcount.org. The code for the ECBC is OREU. 

Thanks again to all of you who participated and helped to make the 2016 ECBC one of the biggest and best in the country!

Team Leaders by Area

1: Ron Renchler

2: Jim Regali

3A: Dan Heyerly

3B: Darryl Wisner

4: Rick Ahrens

5A: Donna Albino

5B: Diane Horgan

6: Kit Larsen

7: Roger Robb

8: Davey Wendt

9: Tom Mickel

10: Vjera Thompson

11A: David Novak

11B: Dick Lamster

12A: Steve Gordon

12B: Thomas Meinzen

13A: Charlie Thomas

13B: Holly Hartmann

14: Dave Bontrager

15: Jim Maloney

16: Linda Gilbert

17: John Sullivan

18: Caryn Stoess

19: Barbara Combs

20A: Brandon Green

20B: Bruce Newhouse

21: Pat Boleyn

--Dick Lamster, Count Coordinator        541.343.8664         maeveanddick(at)q.com