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Benton bird feeder study results part 1

February 21, 2009
Dick Miga

The responses I have received to this year's annual Benton bird feeder study which was started in 1987 by my column predecessor Allen Benton has been amazing. With the addition of the use of e-mail to receive data, I was able in many instances to acknowledge the contributor as well as immediately record the sightings sent. Once again this popular activity attracted a good number of responders. I appreciate the comments and referrals to the history of this popular reader involvement project, such as the thanks for continuing Allen's work. Having been a former college student of Allen's several years ago I was most honored when I was asked to continue his column and this valuable project alerting us to the bird movement throughout our county as well as North America during the winter season thanks to the reports received from you. The data collected also alerts us to weather changes and migration patterns of visiting birds as well as the status of the population of native birds. It also gives you the readers an opportunity to partake in collecting scientific data that helps keep the rest of us aware of bird movement across Chautauqua County and North America as well as changes in a specific bird status and availability. Due to changing weather patterns and weather conditions in Northern Canada as well as our part of the country, we do not always observe the same birds each year. This year particularly, I have already received early reports of uncommon irruptive finches appearing at local bird feeding stations. One of those birds, the Pine Siskin, is not normally a regular local visitor. Over seventy-five participants either sent by U.S. Mail or by internet the listings of the birds sighted. I wish to thank all of you for your involvement. While this is not considered a scientific study, it truly represents a respective analysis of bird movement in our area during the present winter season. This should provide interesting data for a later comparison when we investigate the breeding bird analysis sponsored by several local and regional organizations later in the year.

 
 

 

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