Birdwatchers Digest's Third Annual Big Sit identifies 58 species
PLAQUEMINE - For the third year in a row, birdwatchers spent the day on the Mississippi river levee at the Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site trying to see as many species of birds as possible from a 17-foot circle as part of the Birdwatchers Digest Annual Big Sit.
Some people have called the Big Sit a "tailgate party for birders."
There are Big Sit circles all over the world, including Guatemala, India, the Netherlands, England, Vietnam, and New Zealand.
This year, the circle at the Plaquemine Lock was occupied from sunrise to sunset with birders from the Baton Rouge Audubon Society and the Friends of Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site.
Observers were able to identify 58 different species of birds ranging from Blue-gray Gnatchers to Bald Eagles.
All of the species seen were expected at this time of year in Iberville Parish but several that are expected were missed.
Swallows feeding along the levee really put on a show for the birders. A mixed flock of at least two hundred swallows swooped and dived around the site for about an hour after sunrise.
Most of the flock was Tree Swallows with almost as many Northern Rough-winged Swallows and a few Barn Swallows in the mix. They were all feasting on mosquitoes.
The birders are already planning their return for the Big Sit in 2014 that will happen on the second Sunday of October.