Thursday, December 15, 2005

Wildlife Count on the Parkway

The annual count on the Parkway has been completed. The link goes to the full article in today's Bee, and here is an excerpt:

"Forty-six observers spotted 103 bird species and 12 mammals recently in the American River Natural History Association's 21st annual wildlife count on the American River Parkway.

By canoe and on foot, the volunteers trained their eyes on wildlife from Nimbus Dam to Discovery Park on Dec. 3.

The cool, sunny weather made for good spotting. For only the second time, a Lewis's woodpecker and a Ross's goose were seen during the count.

Previous bird totals mostly ranged between 101 and 110 species. A majority of the counters were Sacramento Audubon Society members.

Among the non-bird species, the volunteers saw 72 deer, 14 ground squirrels, 46 gray squirrels, 126 fox squirrels, five coyotes, two river otters, 10 black-tailed hares, two cottontails, two beaver, eight house cats, a striped skunk and a black rat.

The skunk and rat were firsts in the 13 years that non-bird species have been counted. Since the count was undertaken during the day, some mostly nocturnal animals such as raccoons and opossums, were absent from the list."