It turns out the lamentations I espoused in my previous post about not being able to participate in this years Great Backyard Bird Count were premature. My "backyard" just happened to be at work. While I did last year's count during work breaks as well I was hoping this year to be home where I could do my count in my actual backyard. I've noticed many more Pine Grosbeaks this year compared to last year and wanted to add it to the overall list for Fort McMurray since the most current count for them stands at zero. No matter though. My numbers were way up this year (as were the numbers for Fort McMurray and Alberta as a whole) and for the first time ever, my list included a couple other species other than the Common Raven. We get quite a few ravens out at work, though occasionally I get lucky and glimpse a few sparrows or a magpie. One memorable spring day I even spotted a woodpecker (Downy or Hairy I'm not positive on) but I digress.
I was pretty happy with my count since I felt particularly crunched for time and wasn't able to check out my favorite spots. The final tally then.....
Common Raven - 185
House Sparrow - 4
Black-billed Magpie - 1
With luck I'll have some time off work for next year's count as I would dearly love to spend a few hours checking out my favorite spots....the river valley, the Birchwood trails, The Snye and a small storm pond and marsh area in Wood Buffalo, but I'm sure I'll hit all those places many times come spring.