Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory celebrated its 25th anniversary on October 5, 2013. A nice crowd showed up for the event. Above, folks gathered to hear some guy talk about being a bird consultant for a Hollywood movie, The Big Year, and his experiences meeting Jack Black, Steve Martin, and Owen Wilson.
We had a good turn out for a very chilly early morning bird walk. This is a phone-scoped picture of the morning sun beginning to light up a very distant Long's Peak. It was taken handheld with my iPhone through my Swarovski ATX 80 telescope at 25x.
An American Kestrel posed long enough for everyone to get a scope view and fortunately, long enough for me to capture a quick phone-scoped picture (same set up as above).
And as all my readers know by now, I love visiting local restaurants and trying out new dishes. This is a “regular” sized bowl of Pho (noodle soup) at a Vietnamese restaurant in Brighton, Colorado. It was gargantuan! I didn't even make a significant dent in this Goliath-sized bowl of soup. I think it must be half a gallon. Haha. Check out that quarter beside the glass of water for a size reference! The portion I ate was delicious, too.
Wow! What is not to like about aspens in the fall? I am here in Colorado for Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory’s BBQ with the Birds tomorrow, October 5, 2013. Check out the RMBO website for more information. And of course, if you are in the area why not come and join me for the day’s festivities!
MBS & OFO? What is that, you say? Midwest Birding Symposium and Ontario Field Ornithologists. MBS was a week ago already and OFO was this past weekend. I'm writing from a hotel in Lexington, Nebraska on my way to Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory in Brighton, Colorado.
I'm always thrilled to see young birders' enthusiasm. Nathan already has a keen eye (OFO at Pt. Pelee).
The banquet Saturday night at OFO. Over 240 participants!
We had a large group for a field trip to the tip at Pt. Pelee. That's me in jeans and a light shirt with the green Biggest Week in American Birding backpack about half way. (Photo by Steve Pike)
This is a Blackpoll Warbler at Magee Marsh during MBS. Note that it is showing off the pale soles of its feet…just to taunt birders with the difficult identification.
Golly. This looks delicious. (The berry silly–not the Ring-billed Gull)
Nom-Nom-Nom. Looks so good I think I'll swallow it whole.
Oofah. That was larger than I thought.
Ewww. Gonna have to walk this one off!
Funny sequence of a Ring-billed Gull with a large “snack” at East Harbor State Park during MBS.
Throngs of birders came to Northwest Ohio to catch a glimpse of the magical spectacle of birds on their epic journey from as far away as South America on their way to their breeding grounds in Canada. Birders here are on the famed boardwalk at Magee Marsh near Oak Harbor, Ohio.
The last day of Biggest Week was chilly with winds out if the North–not prime migration conditions. But, the cold wind kept the insect-eating warblers low and conditions for photography were excellent. This Cape May Warbler looks like it could have used an extra layer of clothing. Continue reading →
The last couple days have been rugged. Actually, make that 10 days. I've been struggling physically with bouts of fevers and chills. Thursday night I was at Stat Care for several hours for a batter of tests. I have a kidney infection. I got an antibiotic (levaquin) and I'm also on prednisone for an unknown inflammation. I'm mildly better. I will take any improvement at this point. I'm currently up at Biggest Week now along the shores of Lake Erie.
Here is our intrepid crew of birders from yesterday looking at a striking male Summer Tanager.
I joined the group at 10am. Thanks to Jason Larson for covering for those first 3 hours so I could catch up up on som sleep from the long night before. We had many southern Ohio specialties including Kentucky Warbler, Cerulean Warbler, Worm-eating Warbler, Hooded Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler, Yellow-breasted Chat, Blue-winged Warbler, Louisiana Waterthrush, Prairie Warbler, Yellow-throated Vireo, Summer Tanager, and Black Vulture. We also had Red-headed and Pileated Woodpeckers and Orchard Oriole.
Some highlights from today's outing with Ken & Tad, winners of the day birding with Greg Miller offered by Space Coast Birding Festival. We spent the day birding in Ohio's natural gem, Shawnee State Forest.
It's always a treat for me to see Gray Kingbirds with their soft gray backs and disproportionately large beaks. Someday Ohio will have a record of one of these birds. Well. I hope so anyways. David Goodwin, Ray Webb, and spent a beautiful, Florida-style, sun-filled day on Honeymoon Island near Dunedin, FL. The migrants were slow that day but the birding was fun.