Christmas count: 2,343 birds on Saipan

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THE over a dozen participants in the 20th Annual Christmas Bird Count of the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s on Dec. 18 observed 2,343 birds and 48 endemic and migrant species on Saipan, DFW ornithologist Emilie Kohler said.

They also detected three of our endangered bird species — the Saipan Reed Warbler, the Mariana Common Moorhen, and the Mariana Swiftlet,” she added.

Some species observed that were not detected last year included the Common Greenshank, the Sooty Tern, the Common Sandpiper, the Garganey, the Lesser Sand Plover, and the Gray Heron.”

Kohler said a bird count will also be held on Rota and Tinian. “We are excited to see what species our fellow birders will find there this year,” she added.

The annual Christmas Bird Count was started in 1900 by Frank M. Chapman as an alternative to bird hunting.

The event is now an early winter bird census led by the National Audubon Society, and conducted with the help of more than 70,000 volunteers across Canada, the U.S., and many other countries in the Western Hemisphere.

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