Since Dave Goodwin posted the results of the Alafia Banks CBC, I figured
I'd post the highlights of Sunday's Gainesville Count as well:

We braced for rain, we saw lots and lots of it headed our way on the
weather map - but it never materialized. There was a brief shower a little
after six (as my team sat comfortably in Waffle House eating breakfast),
and most of the day was gray and overcast, but it was dry and temperatures
were mild.

The general feeling was that bird activity was depressed and numbers were
down. However at the tally we discovered that we'd totalled 147 species,
only two fewer than Gainesville's best-ever. Record high tallies included
10 American Bitterns, 102 Red-shouldered Hawks, 359 Blue-gray Gnatcatchers,
581 Chipping Sparrows, and 602 Northern Cardinals.

It was a good day for rare flycatchers: we had a Least Flycatcher, two
Western Kingbirds, and three Vermilion Flycatchers.

It was also a good day for sparrows: the total number of species, including
towhee, was 14. Two northern species were found - a Dark-eyed Junco and a
Fox Sparrow - and the team covering Paynes Prairie's sparrow-rich Persimmon
Point tallied 14 Grasshoppers and 3 Henslow's.

Lingering migrants included: a Solitary Sandpiper, an American Redstart,
two Northern Waterthrushes, and a Yellow-breasted Chat (with a second chat
found Monday).

The day culminated at the evening tally, when co-compiler John Hintermister
went down the checklist species by species, each team called out its
results, and we watched as John Martin added the 2003 totals to a
computerized graph, projected on the wall, that showed annual results for
each species from 1957 to the present.

Rex Rowan

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