[TN-Bird] Shrikes in W. TN

  • From: Mark Greene <greenesnake@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 19 Oct 2007 13:52:26 -0700 (PDT)

I travel up & down the the roads of Crockett, Gibson,
Obion, and Lake Counties a lot as part of my job and I
also cover northern Madison County and eastern Dyer
County. I see quite a few shrikes in certain areas and
almost none in others. I'm also the compiler for the
Reelfoot Lake Christmas Bird Count and the Jackson
CBC. Here's my observations on shrikes:

For the last 10 years we have had an average of 21.6
shrikes per year on the Reelfoot Lake CBC (Lake &
Obion counties). During that 10 year period we have
had a low count of 7 and a high count of 26. We had 20
last year. Since 1970 the average number of shrikes
per year is 16.6 so the numbers on the Reelfoot Lake
CBC have actually increased recently. Does that mean
there ar more shrikes now? Not necessarily. I think we
have better coverage now and have had skilled
observers covering many of the same territories for
several years. So the Reelfoot area (especially Lake
County) is still somewhat of a stronghold at least in
the winter. There are still several breeding pairs but
not in the numbers we get in the winter.

On the Jackson CBC in Madison County since 1992 we
have had an average of 2.6 shrikes on the CBC. Our
high was 11 in 1992 and we have missed it completely 4
times (although on 2 of those we had it as a count
week bird). There has been a definite and noticable
reduction in the numbers of shrikes there and the only
place we get them now with any regularity at all is in
the Jackson Industrial Park west of the city.

In Crockett County I still see shrikes regularly
although not nearly as often as I do in Lake County.

In my home county of Gibson I still see shrikes
occaisionally more in the winter than in the summer
and more in the western part of the county than in the

Obion County is much the same with a few still around
but much less so than in Lake County. 

There are still pretty good numbers of shrikes in Dyer
County and I would rank it 2nd to Lake County in total

Good birding,

Mark Greene
Trenton, TN
Gibson County

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