Thursday, March 3, 2011

Winter in review and the upcoming spring

So I have neglected this blog for too long. I've been somewhat busy writing for the NA Birding Blog which is a collective of voices around the country contributing posts about various bird-related topics.
I've been writing a weekly feature called Rarity Watch which summarizes the regional and ABA rarities reported around the ABA area.
Recently, I also wrote a Book Review about the new Crossley ID Guide that just came out in bookstores nationwide.  The new guide will be a superb addition to any birders library. While not a field guide in the true sense of the phrase, the book will certainly be an asset to birders looking to improve their ID skills.

What else have I been up to you ask? Well, let me see:
Christmas Bird Counts for one. I counted 3 CBCs this season and am the new compiler for one of them.  We totaled 56 species for the new CBC I am compiler for. Interestingly enough, I came up with 48 of those...

I spent 3 days in Sax-zim Bog at the end of Dec which resulted in (finally) my lifer Great Gray Owl. We also cleaned out the bog and saw pretty much everything that could be seen there with the exception of a Goshawk which I have not seen for a few years now.

In January, a mixup, some miscommunications and new assignment of territories led me to not completing my entire section for the Annual Golden Eagle Survey. I did eventually find a Golden Eagle, but the numbers of other raptors were much higher.  

February was highlighted by another trip to Sax-zim Bog. This time to guide at the annual Birding Festival along with my friends Alex Stark, Seth Cutright, Erik Bruhnke, Lars Benson and Alex Watson.
What better way to enjoy the winter boreal birds than doing something I love with some awesome friends? I can't think of one. :D

Otherwise, I have been trying to keep busy planning stuff for the spring and summer.  What sort of stuff? Various trips, both national and international, Bird surveys, leading various field trips and a new job. What new job? oh don't worry, I'll be talking about that later. :)

This winter season has been fairly slow lately.  Skyrocketing gas prices have kept my birding to a minimum. I haven't been out much except for the odd WSO trip here and there.

Monday, I'm headed to Milwaukee to attend a presentation at the Urban Ecology Center by Richard Crossley, author of that excellent new guide.

Next weekend is another WSO field trip. This time to Sheboygan. This is always a fun trip usually with some awesome birds around. What's up for this year? Purple Sandpiper anyone? Maybe? We haven't had one on this side of the lake for a few years now.

At any rate, this coming season should be a fun one. Hopefully everything will play out like I want it to.

Til next time, Happy Birding!

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