Black-backed Woodpecker at President Murray Park
- The highlight of the 20 species that we found in our sector of the Saskatoon Boxing Day Bird Count was a male Black-backed Woodpecker at President Murray Park - giving us 4 woodpecker species for the day. I have not seen a Black-backed in that spruce-filled park for over 10 years.
When we arrived at the park about 9:45 am, we noticed evidence of his presence. There was a coating of freshly scaled bark chips atop the snow under a few trees. Nevertheless, the bird was initially quiet and it took us more than 30 minutes of searching before Jan spotted the bird. Later when the sun came out, the bird began calling relatively loudly and was easier to find.
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- An excellent count bird for Saskatoon. Well done Stan.
My team and I found 17 spp in the Beaver Creek region. Because the river part of our sector was completely frozen over, we missed out on birds like Mallard, Common Goldeneye and possibly Bald Eagle.
Our best birds were Great Horned Owl, White-winged Crossbill, White-breasted Nuthatch, many Pine Grosbeak and Hoary Redpoll.
One more bird count to go, then that's 7 wrapped up for 2012!