Reported by Bob Quaccia.

The 19th Annual American Dipper count on Ashland Creek yielded a slightly above average total of 5 Dippers. A lucky number of 13 observers hugged both sides of the creek for 1.75 miles stopping at every bridge to compare notes. The mild weather was a great improvement over last year’s snow and ice.

These aquatic songbirds were observed singing and busily foraging. The most remarkable sighting of the day was the pair of banded birds working their way up stream together. The colored leg bands yielded the identities of this twosome. Both birds were banded on the same day almost 2 years ago. On that day the birds were located at least one mile apart and had different mates.

If these birds stay together and have a brood, it will be the third known partner for both birds. Nesting can start as early as March.

The annual American Dipper count on Ashland Creek is always held on the first Saturday of January. Since next year will be the 20th we should meet for coffee or breakfast at a local diner beforehand. Don’t miss it!

Photo by Glenn Riley.