With one month down in the Sitka Big Year Project, I find my personal list well ahead of my 2012 pace. That year I had only 60 species, with all but four of them birds. In 2012, I was not photographing everything I counted, nor did I observe (for the list) winter plants. So it’s unsurprising that I have many fewer birds so far this year (it’s a lot easier to observe them generally than photograph them), but many more plants and lichens. So far I have 99 species (identified to species) with quite a few more observations that are not identified fully to species. Bryophytes and lichens were a big miss back in 2012 (I had far fewer species than I could have – including missing many common and relatively easy to identify things).
More generally I’m excited that with minimal advertising so far we’ve managed to have 13 people contribute over 500 observations of over 200 species (again, identified to species – with many additional observations of things not yet identified to that level). It’s been a lot of fun to see the observations come in from folks.
For the first day of the second month, I tried to keep up with the pattern of at least three new species. Today I took advantage of a little time this morning before my day filled up with calls to check out the channel in the morning sunlight. It was calm, and I was able to pick up Barrow’s Goldeneye, and both species of scaup.