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Big Day (Bird Race)

11 November 1998

by Josh Engel

Big Day Statistics:


This wasn't an intentional Big Day.  It was, however, one of the most spectacular days of birding that I have ever witnessed.  An incredible number of (typically more western) migrants came by.  For example, nearly 900 Snow Geese, 1,600 shoveler, and more than 250 Franklin's Gulls came by Northwestern University in the morning; all three establishing new high counts for the area.  Thousands of Sandhill Cranes and other dabbling ducks also flew by throughout the day.  Unfortunately for Big Day reasons, this may have been the first day in my birding career in which I missed both Downy Woodpecker and House Finch.

Full Species List

Common Loon
Pied-billed Grebe
Horned Grebe
Double-crested Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Tundra Swan
Snow Goose
Canada Goose
Wood Duck
Gring-wing Teal
Northern Pintail
Northern Shoveler
American Wigeon
Ring-necked Duck
Greater Scaup
Lesser Scaup
Black Scoter
Common Goldeneye
Hooded Merganser
Res-breasted Merganser
Bald Eagle
Northern Harrier
Cooper's Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Rough-legged Hawk
American Kestral
Peregrine Falcon
American Coot
Sandhill Crane
Greater Yellowlegs
Least Sandpiper
Pectoral Sandpiper
Long-billed Dowitcher
Franklin's Gull
Bonaparte's Gull
Ring-billed Gull
Herring Gull
Rock Dove
Mourning Dove
Great Horned Owl
Short-eared Owl
Northern Flicker
Horned Lark
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
Red-breasted Nuthatch
Eastern Bluebird
American Pipit
Cedar Waxwing
Eurapean Starling
Northern Cardinal
American Tree Sparrow
Chipping Sparrow
Savannah Sparrow
Fox Sparrpw
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco
Lapland Longspur
Snow Bunting
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
Purple Finch
Pine Siskin
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow

Josh Engel
Evanston, IL