My 2020 Birding Year

Year Total: 277 species
Life List: 342 species

Best Month: June -- 176 species
Worst Month: December -- 68 species

State Stats -- State and Life

Oregon -- 255 year -- 274 life
Idaho -- 180 year --- 220 life
Washington -- 138 year -- 274 life
Montana -- 41 year -- 247 life

New Counties Visited

Oregon -- Lincoln, Marion, Crook, Polk, Benton, Washington, Wheeler, Deschutes, Hood River and Jefferson
Idaho -- Twin Falls, Blaine, Gem, Camas, Bonneville, Owyhee, Butte, Madison, Bingham and Jefferson
Washington -- Douglas
Montana -- Mineral and Sanders

Year Lifers: Whimbrel, Black-and-white Warbler, Eastern Phoebe, Plumbeous Vireo, Cassia Crossbill, Broad-winged Hawk, Ruff, Magnolia Warbler, Black Oystercatcher, Snowy Plover, Wood Sandpiper and Acorn Woodpecker

Memorable Moments of 2020 Birding

January 6 -- Found continuing Black Scoter at the Tri-Cities Animal Shelter Pond. 1st county record.
January 18 -- While driving into town to run errands, I found both the first Oregon record of a Northern (abieticola) and Eastern (borealis) Red-tailed Hawk. These two subspecies are almost certainly underreported in the Columbia Basin and are likely annual. and
February 18 -- Found three Snowy Owls at a known wintering grounds in northern Washington.
April 10 -- Performed my 2nd survey for Project WAfLS (Western Asio flammeus Landscape Survey) and got a pair of copulating Short-eared Owls.
April 23 -- Second times a charm to go to a lek and find 61 Greater Sage-Grouse and those were mostly males!
April 28 -- After two days of unsuccessful searching, I was finally about to get my life Whimbrel in northeastern Oregon.
June 1 -- Found a continuing Black-and-white Warbler at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Sighting unfortunately not accepted due to the lack of photos and the eBird reviewer being present who did not see it.
June 27 -- Found continuing Eastern Phoebe in Spokane, Washington; first county record.
July 18 -- Found life Plumbeous Vireo in Castle Rocks, Idaho, who liked my pishing.
July 19 -- Found life Cassia Crossbill in several places in the South Hills; confirmed by flight call recordings.
August 24 -- Found continuing Red-shouldered Hawk in Ladd Marsh, Oregon. 4th county record.
August 30 -- Finally got my first Spruce Grouse photos, three males in fact, in Wallowa County, Oregon.
August 30 -- Found life Broad-winged Hawk from probably two miles away on Ferguson Ridge in the Wallowa Mts. First northeastern Oregon record. Same individual (presumed by age, markings and Swainson's companion) was photographed by a good friend of mine the next day 50 miles away in the Powder Valley. and
September 1 -- Found continuing Ruff at near Cove, Oregon.
September 12 -- Found Magnolia Warbler at Thief Valley Reservoir, Oregon. Unfortunately, the warbler was incredibly secretive and since it was the first county sighting, the county reviewer told me it wouldn't be accepted without photos.
October 21 -- Found life Black Oystercatcher at Depoe Bay, Oregon.
October 22 -- Found life Snowy Plovers in Lincoln County, Oregon. Almost had the county high record with 41 individuals.
October 23 -- Found continuing Wood Sandpiper in Ankeny National Wildlife Refuge. 2nd Oregon record.
October 23 -- Found life Acorn Woodpecker in Klickitat County, Washington.
October 27 -- Found continuing Long-tailed Duck at the La Grande Sewage Ponds.
November 10 & December 6 -- Subspecies are important because I found a pair (yes, two) Eastern Song Sparrows at North Powder. They represent the 4th Oregon state record and 2nd Intermountain record.
November 16 -- According to eBird, my "best" photo of the year is a Black-capped Chickadee.
December 1 & 4 -- In a span of four days, I was able to find and photograph all 4 Blue Jays in Union County. and
December 6 -- Finally found my biggest nemesis bird, the Harris's Sparrow at North Powder.

Goals for 2021
I do have a few goals I want to obtain in the following 12 months. Here's to name a few:

  • Obtained 8 new "photo lifers" so I can say I've photographed 300 species of wild birds.
  • See my life Eastern Bluebird because it's the most common bird on iNat I have not seen.
  • Photograph my next nemesis bird, the White-headed Woodpecker.
  • If safety permits, travel to Pennsylvania to bird for a week or two.
  • See 50 new state birds for Idaho so I can tie that number with OR and WA.
Posted on 31 December, 2020 19:21 by birdwhisperer birdwhisperer


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