2022 Christmas Bird Count



The number of species on Count Day was 67, with an additional 7 species seen during count week. The total number, 7,672, was down this year primarily due to the ice accumulation along the northern shoreline of the inner bay, which generally keeps the mallards on the south side of the bay. ROCK SANDPIPERS, BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS and GREATER SCAUP were the most numerous birds. Fourteen species were represented by only one individual.   We didn’t break any records for number of an individual species, but we did tie the record for dark-eyed juncos at 221.


Thanks to all our volunteers: everyone who helped count (including Feederwatchers); folks who brought food; Dave Erikson the Coordinator/Compiler and Jim Herbert; plus Kathy Eagle, the Feederwatchers Coordinator.  A big thanks also goes to the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge for the use of the I.O. Visitor Center and to Lora Haller and other staff for all their help.

It was A Great Day To Bird!

Christmas Bird Count 2022

Once again, it’s time to start planning for the annual Homer Christmas Bird Count (CBC), which will be held on Saturday, December 17, 2022. This year’s count will be conducted in similar manner as those pre-COVID-19 years due to the decline in number of COVID-19 cases in our area. Masks are optional depending on personal preference.

Count Circle: The area used for the CBC is a 15-mile diameter circle centered in at the base of the Homer Spit. The eastern boundary is near Fritz Creek on East End Road and the western boundary is near Virginia Avenue on the Sterling. Southern boundary is in offshore Kachemak Bay. The northern boundary is in the roadless area of Anchor River Drainage.

Count Day: Count Day will start with a pre-count meeting at 8:30 AM at the islands and Ocean (I&O) Visitor Center. Hot drinks, such as coffee, tea and hot chocolate will be available along with and breakfast snacks. Following a short meeting, count area teams will head out to the respective count areas at 9:00 AM. Teams will methodically survey their areas and count all bird species seen or heard and numbers of individuals until 4:30 PM. Owling can also occur during the hours of darkness on count day. Following the cutoff period for daylight counting, all volunteers will meet back at the I&O Visitor Center to discuss the results of the count and tally the number of species observed. Hot drinks and snacks will also be available.

Count Week: Three days before and three days after the count day (December 14-16 and 18- 20) is referred to as Count Week. Any bird species (no numbers) seen or heard by count participants within the Count Circle area during these time periods needs to be recorded and reported to the compiler as “count week” species.

Count Area Teams: Field team leaders for each area with contact information–  interested team members can contact team leaders directly. Count Area maps, Homer CBC checklists field form and the CBC Rare Bird Form can be found below. Counters should fill out a Rare Bird Form for any species not listed on the Homer CBC checklist. If possible, include photos of any rare birds.

Count Data: All count data should be recorded either on an eBird Checklist and shared with Dave Erikson (eBird ID: Derikson48a) or on our regular Homer CBC checklist field form and emailed to the compiler, Dave Erikson (derikson@alaska.net; 907 441-7931).

Feeder Watchers: On Count Day, feeder watchers should record the species of bird, maximum numbers of each species at the feeder at a specific time, and the amount of time spent observing the feeder. Results should be submitted to the Feeder Watcher Coordinator, (Kathy Eagle; katheagle@gmail.com; 907 232-3789).


We have been very fortunate to have many dedicated birders in Homer who have repeatedly volunteered their time and resources to make the Homer CBC a success over the past 50 years and I’m confident, with everyone’s help, we can get a good count again this year.

Thank you for your continuing support

– Dave Erikson, Homer CBC Compiler

Shorebird Identification presentation

Shorebird Identification with Aaron Lang – 2022

Aaron’s presentation covered all the shorebirds we are likely to see in the spring migration–and a few like the red knot and bristle-thighed curlew that we are always hoping to see!  His excellent photos and narrative provide information about physical characteristics, voice, behavior and habitat.  This presentation could be an introduction to shorebirds for new birders or a review to brush up. And many seasoned birders say they always learn something new.  Enjoy Aaron’s beautiful, instructive photos.


2021 Christmas Bird Count






CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT—We need more volunteers!

December 18th from 9:00 am-4:30 pm

If you want to participate and you’re not already signed up, contact Dave Erikson, Coordinator/Compiler:

 907-441-7931, derikson@alaska.net


COUNT WEEK—report birds to Dave Erikson

Count Week is three days before and three days after Count Day. This year that’s all day from December 15-17 AND from December 19-21.  [For Count Week we count every species that we did not find on Count Day; we do NOT count how many. Birds must be in the Count Circle.]

FEEDERWATCHERS—How else can you help?

Kathy Eagle, the Feederwatcher Coordinator, needs more Feederwatchers! They report birds that come to their feeders and yard on the Count Day.  Many good species have been found by Feederwatchers and they help to get a good count of the numbers of birds in an area.  If you can help, contact Kathy Eagle: call or text 907-232-3789, katheagle@gmail.com. [You must live within the “Count Circle”; if unsure, ask Kathy.]




The only birds we count for the Christmas Bird Count are those we find in the “Count Circle”. The diameter is 15 miles: the center is the intersection of Kachemak Drive and the Spit Rd., and the circle extends east to Fritz Creek, south past the end of the Spit, west to the mouth of Diamond Creek and to the north above town where there are few roads. (We do not go out in boats for our count.)


3. *INFORMATION FROM DAVE ERIKSON (Homer Coordinator/Compiler)

(12-2-21) Greetings fellow KBB members!

Once again, it’s time to start planning for the annual Homer Christmas Bird Count, which will be held on Saturday, December 18, 2021. Due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s count will be conducted in similar manner to last year’s count, which included a few restrictions to ensure the health and safety of all participants. These additional measures will allow us to get a good count and provide for the safety of everyone involved.

Modified count protocols from last year include:

  • No pre- or post-count meetings of count volunteers.
  • No post-count potluck dinner will be held again this year.
  • Count Area field team leaders will be selected in advance (preferably people who have counted the area in previous years).
  • A list of field team leaders for each area will be sent out in an email and posted on the website with contact information so interested team members can contact them directly.
  • Field team leaders will decide whether to census the whole count area together, as in the past, or divide up the count areas into smaller geographic areas and assign one person for each sub area.
  • If field teams travel together, members will drive in separate vehicles. Carpooling is allowed for household members, vaccinated individuals, or people in the same social “bubble”.
  • Field teams will observe a social distance of six feet when birding and masks or face-coverings will be worn as appropriate. Team members will also avoid sharing spotting scopes.
  • All data can be recorded either on eBird or on our regular field form and emailed to the compiler, Dave Erikson (derikson@alaska.net) the next day or soon after.
  • Team Leads will use our standard form or a note in eBird to record time birding, miles and times by methods of travel (vehicle and walking).

Regular count protocols include:

  • Start and finish times will be the same as previous years, 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Owling can occur during the hours of darkness on count day).
  • Record all bird species and numbers seen or heard in your count area during Count Day.
  • Record all bird species seen or heard within the count circle three days before and three days after the count day (Count Week).
  • Feeder watchers will record species, maximum numbers, and observation time in the same manner as previous years and submit results to the compiler.
  • CBC Rare Bird Forms will be completed for all bird species that are not on the Homer CBC Checklist.

We have been very fortunate in Homer to have many dedicated birders who have repeatedly volunteered their time and resources to make the Homer CBC a success over the past 45+ years and I’m confident, with everyone’s help, we can get a good count again this year.

Thank you for your continuing support,

Dave Erikson, Homer CBC Compiler (907 441-7260)




2019 Christmas Bird Count Results



The 120th Audubon Christmas Bird Count was held Saturday, December 14, 2019. Thirty-two local bird counters were in the field with an additional seven “feeder watchers”, who kept track of birds visiting their bird feeders, were able to tally 13,780 birds of 80 species, a record number of species for the Homer count and beating last year’s record by nine species. Six additional species were also documented during count week (three days before and after the actual count day). Numbers of feeder watchers were up from previous years and helped achieve the high numbers. A list of counts for each species can be seen at the end of this post.

Three species were new to the Homer count and included the Sooty Shearwater, Canvasback, Ring-necked Duck, and Orange-crowned Warbler. The exceptionally warm fall is likely the key factor in delaying the migration of these species to more southern latitudes.

The most abundant bird species this year were the Pine Siskin (4,077), Mallard (1,937), and Rock Sandpipers (1,420). A good spruce cone crop this year is supporting large number of finches such as the Pine Siskin, White-winged Crossbill, and Pine Grosbeak, in comparison to recent years. Although large flock of American Robins has been common throughout Homer this fall, only 57 were tallied on this year’s count. It’s often easy to miss large flocks when trying to cover such a large area.

High Mallard numbers reflect the lack of ice in Beluga Slough, Beluga Lake and Mud Bay. These ducks typically winter on the south side of Kachemak Bay when the ice blocks access to feeding habits along the north shore. Rock Sandpipers, a winter resident of Kachemak Bay, were found in generally similar numbers as in previous years.

Over the last several years, there has been a downward trend in numbers of four species of seaducks in the nearshore waters of the count area. These seaducks include the Common Eider, Steller’s Eider, White-winged Scoter, and Surf Scoter. Primary factors in this negative trend are unknown.

A big thanks to all the participants out counting or watching feeders, and to the Islands and Ocean Visitor Center staff for the use of their facilities and helping with logistics for our count. And a special thanks to Dave Erikson who coordinated the count and compiled the results. It was A Great Day to Bird!

View or download the final 2019 Homer CBC list below:

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