Yesterday was the Upper Bucks Christmas Bird Count. I had a challenging area to cover--basically 5 miles of a major road between Quakertown and Coopersburg, with a mile of farm roads, commercial development, and subdivisions on either side. It was a beautiful day, sweater weather, but the birding was slow. I ended up with only 36 species after driving 82 miles and hiking about 2 miles. With no really accessible public land in this area, it was mostly roadside birding. Highlight was probably a Marsh Wren in a small cattail marsh behind a movie theatre, and American Tree Sparrows and Swamp Sparrows in an abandoned field/stormwater detention basin next to a Kmart. Not exactly a day in the wilds, but fun to explore birdlife on the urban fringe.
Postscript: I just got an email from Bill Etter, the count compiler. Turns out this is only the second Marsh Wren to be reported on this count since it started in 1968, the only other sighting was in 1992. So, looks like my strip mall birding really paid off this time!
Owls: Birding’s Troublesome Ambassador
1 hour ago