Conditions: clear skies, wind W at 6MPH, 41F; sunset time 5:35PM
Out on Crow Patrol along Marston Street with Crows streaming in over Marston and Prospect Streets towards the top of Prospect Hill, with one congested flight wave after another arriving from the south out over the Merrimack River. This image below almost 20 minutes after sunset time.
At 27 minutes after sunset time, the Crows assembled on the roof of the Marston Medical Center and then shifted to the treetops along Marston Street with the normal clamoring vocalizations and flight chaos. This image below shows the flight liftoff pattern from the rooftop area.
There were an endless number of dazzling flight bursts all around the roosting trees around Storrow Street and the water tower, out over Marston Street and back. This image below was captured about 30 minutes after sunset time.
As darkness settled in, about 35 minutes after sunset time, the Crows regrouped and consolidated in a much tighter and denser formation along the tree tops. Another dazzling Crow Show!
The 2021 Audubon Christmas Bird Count (CBC) for the Andover Circle, for this separate Crow Count was 12,250 Crows. Last year, the2020 CBC Andover Circle Crow Count was 15,200. Many thanks to Donna Cooper who coordinates and compiles the Andover Circle each year!
Note on counts/estimates: we are now using improved methods for counting the large number of Crows while streaming, staging, and in the roost. For all images, we use both a modified open source counting software program, as well as a hand count approach to carefully document our observations and to increase reliability and accuracy of the presented numbers.
Remember to check out the latest Crow Patrol Podcast with Prof. Sylvia Halkin: wintercrowroost.com/podcast/
Photo gear used for this outing:
Canon EOS 80D with Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Canon EOS 80D with Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS (Infrared)
Canon 1DX MK II with Canon EF Telephoto Zoom 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM
Sony AX700 4K HDR Camcorder
ATN BinoX 4K Smart HD Binoculars with photo/video
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Blog post and photos by Craig Gibson, 2022 Crow Patrol