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Beaver Valley Christmas Bird Count: December 16

Your narrator's car - several years back - sits along a rarely traveled lane in rural Jackson County, Ohio. I was searching for birds during the Beaver Valley Christmas Bird Count (CBC). This census, which is part of the National Audubon Society's massive effort to conduct winter bird surveys from roughly mid-December through early January, is one of several dozen such counts in Ohio. And it is one of the more interesting ones, as the Beaver circle is sparsely populated, and contains a diversity of habitats.

This year's Beaver CBC falls on Saturday, December 16 and you are invited. If you are interested in joining one of the teams, please send me an email: jimmccormac35 AT gmail.com.

Below is a (somewhat crude) map of the count circle:

Click to expand image
We nearly always find interesting species, especially half-hardy birds like pine warbler, Wilson's snipe, eastern phoebe, gray catbird, chipping sparrow, and more. In general, the count circle is a birdy place and …
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Randy Rogers provides scale for the Green Lawn Cemetery tree estimated to be about 313 years old
Columbus Dispatch November 19, 2017
NATURE
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A century before Ohio became a state, a white oak acorn fell on gravelly terrain in what’s now the southwest side of Columbus. The following year, 1704, the fruit sprouted and a seedling arose.

That year, the first regular newspaper in the thirteen colonies was printed: the Boston News-Letter. One hundred sixty-seven years would elapse before the first edition of The Dispatch appeared.

Seven decades after the oak’s emergence, Americans, chafing under British rule, would fight for independence. By the time the Revolutionary War broke out, the acorn had matured into a large oak.

When the acorn sprouted in 1704, Ohio was pure wilderness. The city of Columbus’ predecessor, Franklinton, would not be platted until 93 years later, and it was 15 more until the “Borough of Columbus” was established.

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Nature: Long-flying godwits make rare pit stop near Toledo

A juvenile Hudsonian godwit at Maumee Bay State Park

Columbus Dispatch November 5, 2017
NATURE
Jim McCormac

The average American flies about 1,500 miles per year. That figure is dwarfed by the travels of certain birds.

In mid-October, I spent time with one of the world’s great long-haul migrants, the Hudsonian godwit. These Pinocchio-billed sandpipers travel more than 10 times the average annual air miles of jet-assisted humans.

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