Pennsylvania Birdlists Summary 1998

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Compiled by Terence Schiefer

Sixty-six reports were submitted to Pennsylvania Birdlists for 1998, one less than last year. There are now 49 birders whose Pennsylvania lifelists are above 300. Joining this group for the first time are Tom Clauser, Edward Pederson, and Ernest Schiefer.
The big news this year is in the Pennsylvania annual list category. Deuane Hoffman established a remarkable new record with 313 species! This total surpasses by seven species the previous record of 306 set in 1992 by Bob Schutsky. Deuane was not the only birder to see lots of birds in 1998. John Fedak’s total of 294 is the 5th highest annual list ever, and four other birders, Joyce Hoffmann, Peter Robinson, Mike Fialkovich, and Scott Kinzey, submitted totals that were among the all time top 50.

There are now six birders who have county lifelists of over 300 species. The newest addition to this small group is Jerry Book in Lancaster County. John Fedak joins Deuane Hoffman and Steve Santner as being the only birders who have recorded over 100 species in every Pennsylvania county. Thirteen top county lifelists are now held by Deuane Hoffman, followed by John Fedak and William Reid, each with four. There are still 15 counties with top lists under 200.

Once again Deuane Hoffman submitted county annual lists from every county in the state. He had 8489 county year birds (126.7 species per county), 1018 more than last year. County annual lists in the all time top fifty were submitted by John Fedak (Clarion) and Deuane Hoffman (Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster). Top county annual lists are now held by Deuane Hoffman in fifteen counties, followed by John Fedak with seven, and by Gene Wilhelm with three. There are still 40 counties with top annual lists under 200, and two of these (Clinton and Pike) are under 100.

After 14 years of compiling your list totals, I’ve decided that this installment of Pennsylvania Birdlists will be my last. When I published the first Pennsylvania Birdlists newsletter in 1986, I had no idea that I’d be transplanted to Mississippi. The future of Pennsylvania Birdlists looked grim, but Frank and Barb Haas rescued it by incorporating it into Pennsylvania Birds starting in 1989. Of course there would be no Pennsylvania Birdlists if it weren’t for all of you submitting your lists each year. Although I’ve never met many of you, your names are as familiar to me as the names of birds. So if any of you ever wander down to Mississippi to do some southern birding, don’t hesitate to look me up.

Frank and Barb will be looking for someone to take my place as compiler of Pennsylvania Birdlists. All you need to have is a computer, meticulous attention to detail, and a little time. This issue took me about thirteen hours to prepare. Best of luck to the new compiler of Pennsylvania Birdlists and good birding to you all.