The annual Christmas season bird count in Fremont County is two-thirds complete. The count began on Dec. 17 in the Lander and Dubois areas and continued on Dec. 18 in and around Riverton. The count in the Upper Country around Crowheart will be held this Saturday, Dec. 31st.
Del Nelson of Hudson reported the results of the first two days of counting, excepting the Dubois numbers, by noting that 51 different bird species were spotted around Lander and 49 species were counted around Riverton.
By far and away the most numeous avian species counted so far was the Mallard duck, with 7,118 spotted in the Riverton count and 639 at Lander. Coming in second was the Canada Goose with 3,023 around Riverton and 384 around Lander.
Other species with large populations counted include the European Starling, 4,184 total; American Crow, 4,178 total; House Sparrow, 2,978 total; Eurasian Collard-Dove, 1,250 total; House Finch 807 total; Sandhill Crane 691 total; Red-winged Blackbird 350 total; Common Raven, 334 total; and American Robin 332 total.
The most numerous species found in the Lander area was the House Sparrow with 1,381 counted. In the Riverton count, the most numerous bird was the Mallard with 7,118 spotted.
The symbol of America, the Bald Eagle, was spotted 11 times in the first two counts.
The Dubois bird count is expected to be available in mid-January when the person holding that data returns from vacation.
The Christmas Bird Count is an annual project of the Audubon Society and this year it runs from Dec. 14 through Jan. 5.