In a recent article in the Portland Press Herald Herb Wilson, the Leslie Brainerd Arey Professor of Biosciences, Emeritus, updates readers on fieldwork for the Maine Breeding Bird Atlas, a statewide project that now, at the end of the breeding season, has completed the third year of fieldwork in this five-year project. “The state has been divided up into nearly 5,000 blocks, each about nine square miles in area. About 1,000 of these blocks are designated as “priority blocks.” At a bare minimum, Atlas participants will devote 15-20 hours to each of these blocks to ensure thorough coverage of the state,” Wilson writes.
He goes on to compare bird populations since the fieldwork for the first atlas, from 1978 through 1983. “In the first atlas, tufted titmouse appeared in only 13 of the blocks, mostly in York and Cumberland Counties. What a difference 40 years makes. The current atlas shows titmice broadly nesting in the lower half of our state with breeding records as far north as Caratunk and Dover-Foxcroft.”Read full article