Dick Rowe, the compiler and coordinator of the event, moved the count day forward from December 26th, the date it has traditionally been held. Since 1974 the count has been centered on Big Spring, located along Rt. 60 west of Lexington.
The unusual species identified this year included a Merlin, spotted in the Rockbridge Baths area; a Common Goldeneye at Big Spring; and 7 Bald Eagles seen at Lake Merriweather. Also of note, there was a large flock of Rusty Blackbirds seen near South River. This species is one that has experienced a notable decline in recent years. You can read Dick’s full report on the Count in the December 31st issue of the News-Gazette