With another banner birding year in the books, it’s time to look back on all that Vermont birders have accomplished in 2022. From the Northeast Kingdom to the Massachusetts border, from the Connecticut River valley to the Champlain valley, Vermont’s vast birding community once again took part in the Vermont eBird County Quest. In its 12th year, this event continued to bolster Vermont’s enormous database of bird sightings all in the spirit of friendly competition.
From the frigid mornings of the final Christmas Bird Counts of the 2020-2021 season to the discovery of Razorbills and Northern Gannets which briefly turned Lake Champlain into an Atlantic Ocean look-alike this past November, 2021 was a year full of birding surprises and, unsurprisingly, full of friendly competition during the 11th annual Vermont eBird County Quest.
The Vermont Bird Records Committee (VBRC) held its 40th annual meeting in November 2020. Each year, this panel of experienced birders meets to discuss rare bird reports, out-of-season reports, and rare nesting reports submitted by birders from across the state.
Using new field data collected by a host of Vermont birders who participated in VCE’s 2021 Eastern Meadowlark Blitz, the Endangered Species Committee is considering listing this declining species as state-Threatened. This past spring and summer, more than 800 meadowlark records were amassed from almost 40,000 eBird checklists.
A small, yellowish vireo spotted by Kyle Jones in Woodstock, VT, had veteran birders temporarily stumped until VCE’s Nathaniel Sharp was able to confirm its identification. Soon, birders from across the state were flocking to the site, hoping for a glimpse of Vermont’s first-ever Bell’s Vireo. Read the details of this exhilarating find on the VCE blog.
Vermont’s 251 towns offer up a vast array of habitats and birdlife. Recently, Vermont birder Bob Heitzman accomplished his goal of birding in each of Vermont’s 251 towns, a monumental achievement! Learn how focusing your birding efforts at the town level can be rewarding in so many different ways.
From the first day of 2020 when eBirders reported an incredible 81 bird species, to the discovery of a Crested Caracara in Woodstock, Vermont birders scoured fields and fens, mountains and meadows, lakes and lawns to find as many bird species as possible during the 10th annual Vermont eBird County Quest. In the process, they also collected invaluable data for science and conservation.
This past June, he achieved a birding milestone that precious few Vermont birders will ever realize, as he became just the second person in history to document 150 species in all of Vermont’s 14 counties, each within a single calendar year!
The mesmerizing visualizations brought to you by the eBird Science team with the help of more than 9,000 Vermont eBirders and over 300,000 eBirders around the world offer a bird’s-eye view of avian movements. One could easily get lost in watching warblers and flycatchers migrate across continents—it’s an experience like no other.
Join Community Science Outreach Naturalist Julia Pupko every Wednesday at noon for an hour of iNaturalist, Vermont eBird, and eButterfly help, with some Vermont natural history topics on the side!