Greetings from South Mountain Audubon Society at one of the most wonderful times of the year — a season of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Festivus, concerts, and festivals. It also is time for snow birds from the north, freezing bird baths, and the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count.

Dec. 14 dawned with pea-soup fog, yet 28 volunteers geared up to participate in the Christmas Bird Count. Teams explored defined areas to find every bird, identify each species, and count the total in view. Aye, there’s the rub: seeing. Eyes and binoculars were not as important as hearing. This bird count will be remembered for challenging our ability to bird by ear, identifying birds by their calls.

Bonnie Portzline is a member of South Mountain Audubon Society who gives slideshows about “Birds With A Gettysburg Address.” SMAS@SouthMountainAudubon.org.

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