The annual Indiana Audubon Big May Day Bird Count will be held on May 10, 2014. As described on the IAS website “The objective of the BMDBC is to count the number of birds of each species occurring in a participating county area from midnight to midnight on the 2nd Saturday in May.”
Last year 127 species were recorded in Johnson County. That is the highest total in the last few years and possibly the record. We could always use more participants out in the field if we are going to break the record. Tom Hougham is the compiler and if you are interested in helping please contact Tom at annntom at embarqmail.com. Or drop me a line and I will make sure Tom gets in contact with you.
Tom sets up small teams that will bird an assigned area. The teams are usually in the field from dawn to noon and then we meet for lunch at one of the buildings at Johnson County Park to go over totals. Some people will then continue into the afternoon looking for species not seen in the morning, but that is optional.
Last year Karl Werner and I covered Atterbury FWA and the SW corner of the county. We ended up with 95 species with a few of the highlights for me being a Common Tern at Driftwood SFA, Black-billed Cuckoo at Atterbury, and a Short-billed Dowitcher in a flooded field. We held a similar count when I lived in Illinois and it seemed I always ended up with a few unexpected birds. It seems that anytime you are out in the field for a whole day anything can appear.