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 Jackson Audubon Society

 The Audubon Society of Jackson County, Michigan

2021 Christmas Bird Count

2021 Christmas Bird Count

Gary Siegrist

This year’s Jackson Audubon Christmas Bird Count started out on an ominous note with early morning freezing rain. The rain made it impossible to go owling, reflected in low numbers for the different owl species. Wind speed for the count was light and variable. Overcast skies continued all day and temperatures hovered in the low thirties. These conditions did not stop the 33 participants from locating 64 bird species and a total of 7715 individuals.

We also had 4 (Rose-breasted Grossbeak, White-wing Crossbill, Eastern Towhee, and Brown-headed Cowbird) count week species.

Miles in the field (17.35) and miles by a vehicle (431) was about average which is remarkable knowing the weather conditions. What a hardy bunch of birders we have for the count.

This year brought many good finds especially since we had open water to view the many waterfowl (11) species. All three swan species, Mute (9), Trumpeter (2), and Tundra (4) were located on area lakes. Northern Shoveler (4) have only been seen on three other CBCs. Other good birds included Common Redpoll (2), Field Sparrow (1), Merlin (1), Hermit Thrush (1), Gray Catbird (1), and Swamp Sparrow (1).

High counts this year included Belted Kingfisher (5), Pileated Woodpecker (8), Red-breasted Nuthatch (10), Brown Creeper (10), and Caroline Wren (11). The ten Brown Creepers is the highest number ever recorded for the species.

Species that had the highest number of individuals were Sandhill Cranes (1717), Canada Goose (1519), and European Starling (698). Low numbers for House Sparrow (220) and American Kestrel (1) may just be a weather-related phenomenon.

Disappointing, no Ruffed Grouse or Ring-necked Pheasant again were counted on this CBC. This is a troublesome trend as both species were a constant count species until the last few years.

With another successful Christmas Bird Count behind us, remember to mark your 2022 calendar for 54th consecutive count. This year’s CBC is scheduled for December 17th, 2022. Thank you all for volunteering for the JAS CBC. If you have questions or would like more information concerning this year’s CBC, please email me at

Species Number
Canada Goose 1,519
Mute Swan 9
Trumpeter Swan 2
Tundra Swan 4
Wood Duck 2
American Black Duck 4
Mallard 100
Northern Shoveler 4
Ring-necked Duck 16
Bufflehead 8
Hooded Merganser 12
Wild Turkey 155
Great Blue Heron (Blue form) 5
Sharp-shinned Hawk 2
Cooper's Hawk 4
Bald Eagle 3
Red-tailed Hawk 26
Rough-legged Hawk 1
Sandhill Crane 1,717
Ring-billed Gull 38
gull sp. 14
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) 198
Mourning Dove 367
Eastern Screech-Owl 2
Great Horned Owl 1
Belted Kingfisher 5
Red-headed Woodpecker 4
Red-bellied Woodpecker 54
Downy Woodpecker 83
Hairy Woodpecker 19
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 16
Pileated Woodpecker 8
American Kestrel 1
Merlin 1
Northern Shrike 1
Blue Jay 151
American Crow 148
Horned Lark 36
Black-capped Chickadee 253
Tufted Titmouse 118
Red-breasted Nuthatch 10
White-breasted Nuthatch 90
Brown Creeper 10
Carolina Wren 11
Golden-crowned Kinglet 2
Eastern Bluebird 56
Hermit Thrush 1
American Robin 44
Gray Catbird 1
European Starling 698
Cedar Waxwing 129
American Tree Sparrow 361
Field Sparrow 1
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) 405
White-throated Sparrow 1
Song Sparrow 7
Swamp Sparrow 2
Northern Cardinal 183
Brown-headed Cowbird 2
House Finch 104
Purple Finch 4
Common Redpoll 2
American Goldfinch 260
House Sparrow 220
Total Individuals 7715
Total Species Reported 7702

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