Sunday, February 27, 2011

7th Anniversary of Ivory-billed Woodpecker Sighting

Some Ivory-billed Woodpecker sighting location in
Bayou Deview during 2004-2005 search season.
Sighting mention below are indicated on this map
     It was Seven years ago today that Tim Gallagher and I saw an Ivory-billed Woodpecker on Bayou Deview in the Cache River National Wildlife Refuge, Arkansas.   It is a day I will never forget.  I had researched and searched for the Ivory-bill for thirty-three years prior to the 2004 sighting.  Reports of Ivory-bills had been made almost every year of every decade since 1944, and research told me that they could still be extant.  On February 27th, 2004 I knew that they were.  Well, at least one.

   Over the next year I had an additional 5 sightings.  The very next day, February 28th , I saw an Ivory bill flying southwest, about a half mile south of the first sighting of the previous day.  My third sighting came on May 5th, the fourth on June 9th, and a 5th  sighting came of September 4th.  All three of these sighting were within 525 feet of each other.  My 6th sighting occurred 3/4th of a mile north of Arkansas Hwy 17 on January 22, 2005.  This sighting was special, for I saw two birds flying together.  This was the first time that I knew there were more than one Ivory-bill in the Bayou Deview search area.  Based on the number of sighting that were occurring on Bayou Deview during early 2004, I believed that at least one or more Ivory-bills were making feeding forays into Bayou Deview about once every two weeks.  

     My January 22nd sighting was the last time I positively identified Ivory-bills on Bayou Deview.   The sighting Tim and I had on February 27th 2004 was four years after a major ice storm had hit the area.   The ice storm was severe and created good feeding habitat for Ivory-bills.  Perhaps that is why there were Ivory-bills in the area when Tim and I arrived in February 2004.

To read more about the February 27th 2004 sighting follow this link:

1 comment:

  1. Nice to see the map, and a revisit of the sightings. I'm keeping the faith, and keep checking back!