Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 55

ror message pops up and I am asked
to confirm my number. When I do, my
report is forwarded for review by Project
FeederWatch staff and regional biologists.
The filter also requires responses for
reports of species not usually seen in
certain areas. And had I reported a rare
bird, it would have required validation,
including a description of the site and bird,
and a photograph, if possible.
The filter helps to increase the confidence participants and researchers have in
the data that results from Project FeederWatch. Over the three seasons the filter
was tested, beginning in November 2007,
it flagged 50,104 submissions - about 1.3
percent of the 3,924,088 received.
Reviewers approved 97.7 percent of
flagged reports.
The winter of 2014-15 - which began
late, was the coldest in decades - not only
set the table for my observations on many
more species, it also was a pine siskininvasion year.
We saw our first on Nov. 9, when three
dozen pine siskins, pouring south from
their boreal home grounds, visited our
feeder area.
They must have kept heading south,
because our next siskin visitation would
wait until Jan. 6.
After that, it was every bird for itself -
and mammals, too.
Pine siskins might be small, but they
are feisty.
On a cold and windy Feb. 2, for example, I threw out more birdseed in the
mid-afternoon and a sea of birds covered
the ground. The siskins fought off all comers. Two on the large tube feeder fought
with house finches and won.
They scared off chickadees, tufted
titmice and goldfinches, as well as
FEBRUARY 2017

each other.
The blizzard of birds, including siskins, would continue through February
and into a freezing March, with the siskins
paying their last visit on March 30.
According to a paper about boreal-bird
irruption, pine siskin irruptions might happen every other year, but also might occur
in consecutive years or at longer intervals.
Using more than 2 million pine-siskin
observations during Project FeederWatch
from 1989 to 2012, researchers studied
the patterns of pine-siskin irruptions from
their Canadian homes. They concluded a
wet spring in the boreal region leads to
a small crop of the conifer seeds pinesiskins eat, while a dry spring in the Appalachian region leads to a large seed crop.
If the winter air temperature also is
unusually cold in the boreal region, it
stresses these cold-adapted birds and they
will irrupt south.
While the researchers do not indicate
what happens if both regions have wet
springs, earlier studies have noted pine
siskins usually irrupt if there are few seeds
in the boreal forest and go as far south as
they need to in search of food.
Using Project FeederWatch data to
track changes in winter bird communities has been useful in studying climate
change in our backyards, according to
researchers Karine Prince and Benjamin
Zuckerberg.
Prince and Zuckerberg maintain North
America's climate has been changing
since the 1970s, especially during winter, with less and shorter snow cover and
more-variable and heavy precipitation.
Choosing 38 bird species that winter in
eastern North America, the pair tested the
influence of changes in minimum winter
temperatures over 22 years, and found
55



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017

Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - Intro
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - Cover1
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 2
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 3
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 32
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 44
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Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - 64
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2017 - Cover4
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