FREEPORT, Grand Bahama -- More than 50,000 observers in The Bahamas, Canada, the United States, and the Caribbean and participate each year in an all-day census of migratory and resident bird populations. The primary objective of this "Christmas Bird Count" is to monitor the status and distribution of bird populations across the Western Hemisphere.
Grand Bahama Island provided five teams for its eleventh count with a total of 34 local and visiting field observers that were assigned to five different count sections in the Freeport/Lucaya area. The event began with an orientation for the participants and a social gathering at Junkanoo Beach Club where delicious hot chili and other refreshments were provided during the chilly evening compliments of the Club and hosted by Club manager, Mark Neely.
The official count began on Saturday morning at sunrise. Teams hardly took time for lunch and birded until sundown. Their efforts were awarded with several unusual species that had not been seen during previous counts.
After an exciting day of birding, teams gathered at Garden of the Groves for the highly anticipated tabulation of the number of species each team had observed during the day. The total count of bird species was 109, however, when six additional species that were observed during count week had been added the total reached 115.
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