Greg’s Warbler Hotspots for Spring

Following is a list of some good spring warbler migration hotspots. I collected data from eBird for all years and March, April, and May for spring months. Data retrieved as of March 2 & 3, 2015. Average warbler species per checklist is an average count of warbler species for each checklist submitted to eBird. Common warbler species is defined as warbler species that appear on 40% or more of the checklists submitted to eBird. When to go is the week having the highest average warbler species count. Click on the hotspot location name to view the hotspot in Google maps.

GREG’S WARBLER HOTSPOTS FOR SPRING

1. Magee Marsh Wildlife Area (Lucas Co.)
Lucas, US-OH
Average warbler species per checklist: 15.4
Common warbler species: 22
When to go: May 8-14

2. Point Pelee NP (general location)
Essex, CA-ON
Average warbler species per checklist: 13.9
Common warbler species: 19
When to go: May 8-14

3. Kennesaw Mountain Nat. Battlefield Park
Cobb, US-GA
Average warbler species per checklist: 13.5
Common warbler species: 16
When to go: April 22-30

4. Tawas Point SP
Iosco, US-MI
Average warbler species per checklist: 12.9
Common warbler species: 17
When to go: May 8-14

5. Central Park
New York, US-NY
Average warbler species per checklist: 12.3
Common warbler species: 15
When to go: May 8-14

6. Montrose Point, Lincoln Park, Chicago
Cook, US-IL
Average warbler species per checklist: 11.7
Common warbler species: 13
When to go: May 15-21

7. Dry Tortugas NP–Garden Key/Fort Jefferson
Monroe, US-FL
Average warbler species per checklist: 11.0
Common warbler species: 14
When to go: April 22-30

8. Mt. Auburn Cemetery
Middlesex, US-MA
Average warbler species per checklist: 10.8
Common warbler species: 13
When to go: May 8-14

9. South Padre Island (LTC 034)
Cameron, US-TX
Average warbler species per checklist: 10.0
Common warbler species: 11
When to go: May 1-7

10. High Island (UTC 051)
Galveston, US-TX
Average warbler species per checklist: 9.6
Common warbler species: 12
When to go: May 1-7

11. Cape Island (Cape May Co. south of the Cape May canal)
Cape May, US-NJ
Average warbler species per checklist: 9.5
Common warbler species: 10
When to go: May 8-14

12. Dauphin Island
Mobile, US-AL
Average warbler species per checklist: 7.9
Common warbler species: 7
When to go: May 1-7

Upcoming Stuff as of Feb 5 2015

Greetings from Florida! It’s raining this morning and I’ve got a day between guiding and festivals.  It’s also windy here in Ormond Beach, FL with highs in the 60s. Tomorrow is the beginning of the Birds of a Feather Fest in nearby Palm Coast, FL. I have a difficult time keeping up with all my upcoming stuff, and I imagine it’s even harder for you (unless you are one of the 11 die-hard Greg Miller fans who watch every calendar change on this website <grin>).

Upcoming Festivals in 2015:

Feb 6-8 – Birds of a Feather Fest in Palm Coast, FL

http://www.palmcoastgov.com/events/birding-fest

This is the inaugural year for this festival and I am privileged to be a keynote speaker for it.

Feb 13-15 – Sax-Zim Bog Birding Festival in Meadowlands, MN

http://sax-zimbog.com/birding-festival/

I can’t wait to go back to THE BOG. Yes, it is take-your-breath-away cold. But the owls will make it all worthwhile.  Two of my favorites are here–the Great Gray Owl and the Northern Hawk Owl.  Throw in some boreal possibilities like Boreal Chickadee, Black-backed Woodpecker, Spruce Grouse, Gray Jay, and Pine Grosbeak and now it doesn’t seem so cold. Well. Yes, it does still feel cold, but at least you are going to be one happy camper with these birds.
Continue reading Upcoming Stuff as of Feb 5 2015

November 2014 Rio Grande Valley Trip Report

Green Jay shucking seeds - Sabal Palm Sanctuary - Brownsville TX - 2014-11-17
Green Jay shucking seeds – Sabal Palm Sanctuary – Brownsville TX – 2014-11-17 photo by Greg Miller

I led a trip to the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas November 16-23 for Wildside Nature Tours.  We had a very chilly start but ended up with a nice list of birds.  Here’s my trip report.  If you are stuck inside on a cold evening, this will probably warm you up a little.  Texas birds are pretty magical.  I bet you’ll sleep better.

Texas – Lower Rio Grande Valley with Greg Miller – Nov 16-23 2014 (corrected)

I am here in Florida this weekend.  I will meet Kevin Loughlin in a day or two to set up the booth for Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival here in Titusville, Florida January 21-26, 2015.

2014 Ecuador Trip Report

Sword-billed Hummingbird hovering - Guango EC - 2014-08-14
Thee Creature of Extreme Awesomeness“, Sword-billed Hummingbird hovering – Guango EC – 2014-08-14 photo by Greg Miller

Nothing like a little shooting at the local mall to keep me indoors long enough to complete a trip report on the most phenomenal birding adventure I have ever experienced.  Ecuador.  It is a fantastic place full of thousands of orchids, fresh fruit all year (no seasons), deliciously strong, dark coffee, 16,000-foot mountains with cloud forests in the West, the Amazon Basin rainforests in the East, many wonderful people, and bird diversity like nowhere else in the Western Hemisphere (and arguably, the World).

Northern Ecuador – Andes & Amazon – Aug 2014

 

eBird Ranked List of North American Birds

A couple weeks ago I posted the Top 100 Most Reported Species in eBird in North America.  It was data from all years 1900-2012 as of 2/22/2013.  I actually summed up the total of all positive checklists for every species in North America reported to eBird (restricted to only species listed on the American Birding Association’s Checklist of Birds of the ABA Area). Today I am making a file available that lists all 932 ABA species reported to eBird during that time period.  This is a CSV file (comma separated values) so you can download it and put it into most spreadsheets.  Even if you do not have a spreadsheet, you can still view the file as a text file.

North American Species Ranked By Positive Checklists 1900-2012

More about this to come. I gotta to pack to head to Florida.  See you all at Space Coast!

Top 100 Most Reported Species in eBird in North America

Have you ever wondered what birds were most commonly reported to eBird?  I have collected data from eBird for the years 1900-2012 (all months/weeks) as of 2/2/2013. Data has been rolled up by State/Province for the Lower 48 States, all of Canada, and Alaska (but not Hawaii).

Yes. I know 2015 is almost here and this is data through 2012. But I’ve done all this in my “spare” time. I will update it when I get a chance. For now, I find this stuff still very fascinating.  Oh, one other thing.  This is still 2012 taxonomy, too.

The number of positive checklists (those checklists submitted indicating a positive sighting–either 1 or more birds) has been summed for each species out of nearly 6 million checklists.  Want to know the species with the most positive checklists?  The birds that are most commonly reported in all of North America?  Here you go! Continue reading Top 100 Most Reported Species in eBird in North America

A Contemplative Christmas – 2014

white trumpet-shaped daylily with drops faded filter- Holmes Co OH - 2014-07-02
white trumpet-shaped daylily with drops – Holmes Co OH – 2014-07-02 Photo by Greg Miller

Earlier in my life I discovered just how amazingly easy it was to be lonely. Lonely is no respecter of persons. It doesn’t matter how rich or poor you are, or the color of your skin, or whether you are male or female, or where you work, etc. I found out that loneliness doesn’t have anything to do with how many people are around either. I was shocked at how lonely one can feel while married. Or in a crowd. Continue reading A Contemplative Christmas – 2014

Help the Kirtland’s Warbler!

Kirtland's Warbler - Kelleys Island OH - 2014-05-13 photo by Lee Wallace
Kirtland’s Warbler – Kelleys Island OH – 2014-05-13 photo by Lee Wallace

The Kirtland’s Warbler is going to be taken off the Endangered Species List! What!?!? Yes. It’s true. In both 2012 & 2013 there were more than 2,000 singing males counted. That is double the original objective from the 1960s. Now there is planning for this to happen.  Unfortunately, the Kirtland’s Warbler success story is still heavily reliant on human intervention. What can be done without the Government’s help? There is still hope.  Read on about how we all can be involved.

Here’s a nice article by Howard Meyerson of The Grand Rapids Press: Endangered Kirtland’s Warblers: Looking good, but what lies ahead

Here is the latest info from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Endangered Species page for the Kirtland’s Warbler

Michigan Audubon will be giving guided tours to see Kirtland’s Warblers this year (2014): Guided Tours for Kirtland’s Warbler 2014

The Kirtland’s Warbler Initiative (thanks to Huron Pines) was designed to smoothly transition the efforts to continue conservation of the Kirtland’s Warbler after it becomes delisted from the Endangered Species List.

Michigan DNR is looking for public input on the new conservation plan in this Petosky News article: Public invited to provide input on new Kirtland’s Warbler Conservation Plan

Come join me this Thursday (June 12, 2014) in Grayling, Michigan to help make this a safe ride for the Kirtland’s Warbler.
Kirtland’s Warbler Home Opener
Join me to help the Kirtland’s Warbler!
Thursday, June 12, 6:30-8:30pm
Ramada Inn, Grayling, Michigan

2014 Optics Fling by Time & Optics

2014-06-05 14.17.41

Today (June 5, 2014) & Tomorrow (June 6, 2014)!  Optics Fling by Time & Optics.

6954 CR77, Millersburg, OH 44654 PH 330-674-0210

Here’s a schedule as of late last night:

*Sign up for trips on site as spaces are available (first come – first served)
*Field trips are limited to 10 – 25 people depending on the destination
*Food provided by South Mount Hope School (food is by donation and the proceeds will benefit the school). A local Amish family will also be making kettle corn. (YUM!)
*LOADS of optics to try before you buy!
*Used Book Sale

Field Trips and Book Signing Schedule

FRIDAY

8:15
Mohican Hotspots (4 – 5 hours)
Leaders: Hallie Mason, Kenn and Kimberly Kaufman

9:15
Killbuck and Funk (3 hours)
Leaders: Bob and Denise Lane and Aden Yoder

9:15 AM – Leihley Hill and Dundee Field (2 – 3 hours)
Leaders: Greg Miller and Su Snyder

10:15 AM local Barn Owl and Bobolink Trip (1 hour)
Leader: Bruce Stambaugh

1:15 PM Leihley Hill and Dundee Field (2-3 hours)
Leaders: Bob and Denise Lane and Aden Yoder

2:15 and 3:15 Barn Owl and Bobolink (1 hour)
Leader: Bruce Stambaugh

4:00 – 5:00 PM Book Signing with Kenn and Kimberly, Greg Miller, and David Klein

SATURDAY

Same Field Trip Schedule but leaders may change
Book Signing from 11 – 1:00 PM (same authors)

More information can be found at the Optics Fling web page.

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

Raindrops on roses and… Wait. That's some 1960's movie. But Biggest Week in American Birding is almost here. And really these little gems called warblers decorate the trees and fill the air with song. In short, they make me happy. Here are a few birds I got photos of in 2013. Enjoy! Continue reading These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things