2022 Count Results

Colorado Springs Christmas Bird Counters,

Thank you for participating in the 2022 Colorado Springs CBC. I appreciate the time and effort you dedicated to making this count a success. A total of 152 people participated as field observers and/or feeder watchers across 52 parties within the count circle. We covered 150 party miles on foot, 375 party miles by car, and totaled 258 party hours for the 2022 count, the third-highest total in 73 years of the Colorado Springs CBC behind only 2020 and 2021. Through this effort, we found 96 species on count day and four additional count week species. The 73-year average species count is 80.9 species, though the average since 1990 is 91.2 species. We tallied 17,110 individual birds, considerably higher than the 73-year average of 11,586 individuals and slightly higher than the average since 1990 of 16,506 individuals.

I have attached the annual count records, which include historical data for the Colorado Springs CBC back to 1950. The results for the 2022 Colorado Springs CBC are also attached and are presented by individual count sections with a second tab to describe each count section’s coverage area.

The following species set or tied record highs for number of individuals counted: Cackling Goose (2,325 individuals; 2,165 in 2019), Great Blue Heron (13 individuals; 11 in 2012, 2015, 2021), American Three-toed Woodpecker (2 individuals; also 2 in 2017), Winter Wren (1 individual; tied with several other years), Canyon Towhee (4 individuals; also 4 in 2017), and Swamp Sparrow (3 individuals; 1 in several other years). A Cassin’s Finch irruption is ongoing this winter, and 101 Cassin’s Finches were observed during the count. This was the first triple-digit total for this species on the count since 1996. In contrast, the four Red-breasted Nuthatches recorded were the fewest since 1975. Like Cassin’s Finch, Red-breasted Nuthatch populations are irruptive and can vary considerably from year to year.

Observers tallied the second-highest totals for three species on this count. The 351 White-crowned Sparrows recorded this year were second only to the 423 White-crowned Sparrows documented on the 1956 count. Similarly, only the 12 Ferruginous Hawks observed on the 1997 count exceeded the seven individuals documented this year. Six Wood Ducks observed along Fountain Creek this year were only exceeded by the seven recorded on the 2009 count.

A Turkey Vulture was observed near the northwestern edge of the circle, marking only the second time since 1977 and the fourth time this species has been recorded. 

CBCs are a great way to contribute to the effort to understand and help our bird populations. Cornell Lab offers 10 Ways to Help Birds, among which is contributing to citizen science. Follow the link to see other ways you can easily help birds. 

If you have any suggestions for changes or improvements for the Colorado Springs CBC, please share them with me.


Tyler Stuart

Colorado Springs CBC Compiler & Secretary

Aiken Audubon Society

Download PDFs or Excel spreadsheets:

The next Christmas Bird Count will be held on December 16, 2023.

Brush up on frequently-confused birds before the count! Click here…

COCS CBC MapNavigate your count circle. Colorado Springs counters can view their route on Google maps. See interactive map here.

Learn more about Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count.

Aiken’s results from previous years: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020. Complete data is available by signing up for Audubon’s free e-magazine, American Birds, at www.audubon.org/citizenscience.