With the end of year approaching I thought it might be fun to revisit the prediction for total number of species I might find on this adventure.
Way back in January I made a guess as to how many species I might be able to find this year. I took the results and rounded up to 250 species. Things seem to be going quite wall since I am presently at 258 species, already well past the original estimate. In addition to doing well on the species I expected to see I have picked up a total of 23 species I had not counted on finding. So, with about 2 and a half months remaining here is an updated guess as to how things might end up.
Along the South Coast I have seen most everything I can expect to see but there are still a few species I could pick up. These include Brewer’s Sparrow, Swamp Sparrow, a warbler such as Chestnut-sided, and Grace’s Warbler. Assuming something unexpected also is found, that is 5 species.
Moving into the Santa Ynez Valley and Figueroa Mtn area (which I plan on visiting soon) there are a number of common species I have yet to find such as: Yellow-billed Magpie, Horned Lark, Northern Pygmy Owl, Mountain Chickadee, and Pygmy Nuthatch. If I can return again near the end of the year I should be able to add Lewis’ Woodpecker, Common Merganser, and Common Goldeneye. That is 8 more species.
Going farther afield to the Cuyama Valley, which I hope to do, I could add Ferruginous Hawk, Prairie Falcon, Tri-colored Blackbird, and Mountain Bluebird. That is 4 more species.
So total that all up and I could add 17 more species, which would put the total for the year at 275. That would be a really great result, as at the beginning of the year I figured the best possible result would be about 270.
Of course there are many factors that will impact the final total. This prediction also assumes I remain healthy, motivated, and available (fingers crossed this is the case!). Also predictions of a wet winter may reduce my ability to get farther afield.
Only time will tell.