December 31: Today we conducted the annual Christmas week bird count in our assigned territory in the Hypoluxo, Wellington, and west Boynton Beach area of Palm Beach County. The total this year was only 78 species, down from last year owing largely to the fact that some of what were our best natural areas are now fenced off and no longer accessible due to ever-expanding development. We have almost no natural habitat left to count – virtually all of it is developed area, gated communities, and man-made lakes. Sad. Best birds of the day were three Roseate Spoonbills and an adult Bald Eagle, common in other parts of Florida but always a treat in Palm Beach County.