A chickadee perches on Keith Kline’s hand while birding recently (contributed photo)

Central Alberta’s 150th bird species already sighted

Organizer says the count will go on until end of 2017

Never underestimate keen birdwatchers on a mission.

The Canada 150 Bird Count has already reached its target more than a month before this country’s official sesquicentennial on July 1st — thanks to a growing number of intrepid Central Alberta birdwatchers who’ve been keeping their eyes to the skies.

“The 150th species was counted. It’s a yellow warbler. It’s a very, very common bird, but they’re late migrants,” said the count’s organizer Keith Kline, a member of the Red Deer River Naturalists.

The city resident was pleasantly surprised that the 150th bird species has been spotted so soon.

When Kline came up with the idea of doing a 12-month bird count to mark Canada’s 150th birthday, he speculated 150 species just might be identified across the region by the end of 2017. He later upgraded his expectations after 60 species were counted by the end of March.

Kline stated he wouldn’t be shocked if the count reaches 150 by July.

But in fact, the yellow warbler was identified in Sylvan Lake on Sunday, May 21, by Leo Degroot, a fairly new participant in the Red Deer River Naturalists bird count.

Kline is very pleased that birdwatchers who’ve never previously taken part in counts are sending in reports of sightings. “We have some extra counters since we put it out in an RDRN email and we got some publicity.”

Enthusiastic birdwatchers from Sundre to Stettler, Rimbey to Three Hills have jumped on board with the project because “it’s fun and people are gaining knowledge,” he added. “It’s also a unique way to say, ‘Happy Birthday, Canada!’”

Although no unusual species were spotted so far, Kline said that doesn’t mean “surprises” won’t turn up. At the very least, someone could see a majestic blue heron, which flies through this area. The graceful bird is hard-to-spot, despite its large size, because it blends so well with the sky and lakes.

Kline said the 150 Bird Count will continue to see how many different kinds of species can be seen in Central Alberta by Dec. 31.

For more information on the Canada 150 Bird Count, or Kline’s Saturday morning birdwatching tours, please visit www.rdrn.ca.


Just Posted

After death of 8th child, Ikea relaunches dresser recall in U.S and Canada

NEW YORK — Ikea relaunched a recall of 29 million chests and… Continue reading

Red Deer agency supporting for LGBTQ2S+ youth

New report on LGBTQ2S+ youth from the Office of the Child and Youth Advocate

Decision on Haitians’ status in the U.S. has Canada on alert for asylum seekers

OTTAWA — A decision by the Trump administration to end a temporary… Continue reading

European court opens hearing on recognizing same-sex unions

BUCHAREST, Romania — The European Court of Justice on Tuesday opened a… Continue reading

German police retrieve 100 stolen John Lennon items

BERLIN — A cigarette case, a handwritten musical score, three diaries and… Continue reading

VIDEO: Replay Red Deer: Nov. 19

Watch news highlights from the week of Nov. 13

Red Deer Christmas Bureau to help 1,300 children this year

Demand is high, but Red Deer always provides

CP Holiday train will stop in some Central Alberta communities

The popular train will feature entertainment from Colin James and Emma-Lee

Kittens rescued after allegedly being tossed from vehicle

Couple finds abandoned kittens new home through Facebook

VIDEO: ‘Party bus’ goes up in flames in Vancouver

Fire crews responded to the late night blaze

Chicken crosses B.C. road, stops traffic

Rooster makes early morning commuters wait in Maple Ridge

Red Deerian honours her brother who died in a motorcycle collision

Houaida Haddad is encouraging Red Deer residents to donate blood

Red Deer County firefighters to be recognized for Waterton help

RCMP brass will give formal recognition Monday

Ron James tries to lighten humanity’s load through humour

The comedian returns to Red Deer for shows Dec. 1 and 2

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month