UltraWalk & UltraBird May 23, 2009

Volunteers walk and bird for conservation
in the Rocky River IBA

Twenty-six people walked for conservation during Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society’s third annual UltraWalk on Saturday, May 23, 2009.  The walk, conceived by Stan Searles in 2007, raised funds to support the five-year Rocky River IBA breeding bird survey, now in its fourth year.  It featured two components, a 31-mile walk, and a five-mile walk. 

Patricia Potter of Lakewood, Ohio, and Mary Stoffiere of Avon, Ohio, led the walkers into the Emerald Necklace Marina at the end of the day.  Both women completed the 31-mile component, starting at 6:00 a.m. at Buzzard Roost in Hinckley Reservation, and finishing at 5:15 p.m.  Three other walkers, including Stan Searles, Susan Light, and Courtenay Gregory, also walked the 31-mile distance. 

When the 31-milers reached Cleveland Metroparks Park Operations Center in Fairview, 20 more people joined them for the last five miles of the trek.  WCAS President Tom Romito decided not to walk the 31-mile distance due to an injury he incurred while training for walk the week before.  Instead, he contributed about 13 miles off and on during the day, including the last five miles. 

While the UltraWalkers were burning up the pavement, the UltraBirders were proceeding at a much more leisurely pace. Four birders covered the Rocky River IBA from Hinckley to the Marina in Rocky River. The birders were Kit Birch, Mary Lou Hura, Pam Kalhof, and Mary Anne Romito. They saw or heard a total of 75 species for the day. A copy of their report follows. 

The UltraWalk and UltraBird raised funds for the IBA survey through registration fees and pledges for their efforts.  Proceeds will help WCAS to defray expenses associated with conducting the survey this year.

Here is the UltraBird tally.



Total birds noted Birds at nest
Hinckley Mill Stream Rocky River
Canada Goose X X   85  
Wood Duck     X 4  
Mallard X X X 36  
Great Blue Heron X   X 10 X
Great Egret   X   1  
Green Heron     X 1  
Turkey Vulture   X X 4  
Red-shouldered Hawk   X   1  
Red-tailed Hawk X     1  
Peregrine Falcon     X 1  
Killdeer   X X 2  
Ring-billed Gull X     4  
Herring Gull X   X 3  
Rock Pigeon     X 1  
Mourning Dove X   X 4  
Black-billed Cuckoo X     1  
Chimney Swift X X   11  
Belted Kingfisher     X 3  
Red-bellied Wodpecker X X X 7  
Downy Woodpecker X X   5  
Northern Flicker X X   3  
Pileated Woodpecker X   X 2  
Olive-sided Flycatcher     X 1  
Eastern Wood-Pewee X X X 11  
Acadian Flycatcher X X   5  
Willow Flycatcher   X   1  
Eastern Phoebe X   X 13  
Great Crested Flycatcher X X X 6  
Eastern Kingbird X   X 4  
Yellow-throated Vireo X     2  
Warbling Vireo   X X 14  
Red-eyed Vireo X X   16  
Blue Jay X X   5  
American Crow X     10  
Tree Swallow   X X 4  
Northern Rough-winged Swallow X X X 10  
Cliff Swallow     X 9 X
Barn Swallow X   X 12 X
Black-capped Chickadee X   X 8  
Tufted Titmouse X X   6  
White-breasted Nuthatch X X   6  
Brown Creeper X     2  
Carolina Wren X     1  
House Wren X X   17  
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher X X   6  
Veery X     2  
Wood Thrush X X   5  
American Robin X X X 13  
Gray Catbird X X   9  
European Starling X X   14  
Cedar Waxwing X     5 X
Blue-winged Warbler X     3  
Yellow Warbler X X X 13  
Black-throated Green Warbler   X   1  
Blackpoll Warbler X     2  
Cerulean Warbler X X   4  
American Redstart X X   4  
Louisiana Waterthrush X   X 2  
Common Yellowthroat X X   3  
Hooded Warbler X X   15  
Scarlet Tanager X X X 6  
Eastern Towhee X X   5  
Chipping Sparrow X X X 9  
Field Sparrow X     2  
Song Sparrow X X   9  
Northern Cardinal X X X 21  
Rose-breasted Grosbeak X   X 3  
Indigo Bunting X X   13  
Bobolink X     1  
Red-winged Blackbird X X   21  
Common Grackle X   X 8  
Brown-headed Cowbird X X X 7  
Baltimore Oriole X X   7  
American Goldfinch X X X 7  
House Sparrow X X   8 X
Total Species by reservation 61 44 34    
Total Species for day       75  

UltraWalkers & UltraBirders at the start © Mary Anne Romito


Waiting for the UltraWalkers © Penny O'Connor

They made it! © Penny O'Connor

To a job well done! © Penny O'Connor

UltraBirders hard at work © Mary Anne Romito

The Cliff Swallows have returned!! © Mary Anne Romito.

Mama Mallard & ducklings © Mary Anne Romito

Ultrawalk participants
Baby Lania Searles, Sarah Stephens, Liz Clingman, Greg Genovese, Mary Anne Romito © Penny O'Connor



Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society, 4310 Bush Ave, Cleveland, OH 44109 info@wcasohio.org