This year's North Nassau CBC took place on Saturday December 21. We’d like to 
thank all of the dedicated birders who participated in the event. Participants 
who attended the compilation dinner at the Garvies Point Museum were rewarded 
by delicious and free food provided the Oyster Bay-Huntington Audubon Society.  
Special thanks to Veronica Natale-Victoria and Nassau County Parks Commissioner 
Eileen Krieb for making the facility available for the dinner.

The coverage was excellent, and the results truly reflect the current bird 
diversity and abundance in Northern Nassau County. CBC day turned out to be a 
beautiful winter day, below the freezing point, but with little wind.  The 
species count stands at 104 species, which is right at the last 10-year average 
for the North Nassau circle.

Here’s our account of some noteworthy species from the 2019 North Nassau CBC:

Regional Rarities:

A Eurasian Wigeon (first reported last Wednesday) at Cold Spring Harbor in the 
afternoon, after some of the ice gave way (14th count for this species)
A Cackling goose on a private property in Westbury (7th count)

Uncommon to rare winter birds for Northern Nassau:

A Lesser Black-backed gull at Pryibil Beach (13th count)
2 Eastern phoebe, including one at Shu Swamp
2 Palm warbler, including one at Planting Fields Arboretum
6 Eastern meadowlark at Caumsett State Park
2 Red-Shouldered hawk, including a flyover at Pryibil Beach
A flock of 6 Pine warbler at Whitney Pond Park
A Northern Saw-whet Owl

The cold temperatures of the previous days froze most ponds and small bays in 
the circle. This possibly impacted the count results, because several diving 
waterfowl species that prefer freshwater ponds were missed (Ring-necked duck, 
Redhead, Common merganser, Pied-billed grebe, and American coot).  

American kestrel, Bonaparte’s gull, and Canvasback were also missed, but not 
surprisingly given their population decrease and sporadic occurrence in the 
North Nassau CBC in the last decade.  Tufted titmouse continued their drastic 
winter decline in our circle, a count of 38 being the lowest numbers recorded 
since the 1960’s. Titmouse had first appeared in our circle in 1959, and had 
thereafter increased in numbers to a peak of 316 individuals counted in 1995.

However, other passerines and woodpeckers, were found in unprecedented numbers. 
 This included all-time high counts of Red-bellied woodpecker (256), Hairy 
woodpecker (64), Carolina wren (204), White-throated sparrow (1790), and 
Chipping sparrow (68, shattering the previous high of 11 in 2011). Other high 
counts included Rusty blackbird (77, seen in 5 sectors), Sapsucker (29), and 
American robin (1536).  

Once again, our most abundant species was Canada goose, with a count of 12,955, 
accounting for 41% of all the birds counted.  This was our 2nd highest total 
for this species (14,677 in 2013).

Best wishes for the Holidays, and we hope to see you next year for the 2020 
North Nassau CBC.

Stephane Perreault, Jennifer Wilson-Pines, Brendan Fogarty, & Glenn Quin


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