2013 and beyond

It's pretty simple: the most birds seen or heard from one's yard during 2013 will be the "winner". Want in? O.k....then do it despite that.

2013 promises to be a lot less mean but still a carbon-free birding competition, even if slightly less exciting than a MEGA x EPIC hybrid.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

A bit of flyover action this afternoon

As you all may have noticed, I'm now gaining on DuckBoy. Watch out! A nice clear sky this afternoon encouraged a bit of movement over the Wastelands today. Most notably was a pair of red-tails that appeared to be doing a courtship flight. The other score was a group of MODOs cruising between buildings.

Friday, January 29, 2010

No new yearbirds, but...

Horned Lark singing this evening at the Sparta airport in the 10 degree temperatures (within a week or two they should be displaying over my yard...), and this sly guy at the brushpile chasing down my juncos:

Also, here is a bird I will never get for my yard, but was excited to see while checking out the Grand River in downtown GR last weekend. Both birds were perched high atop this tower, and literally no one walking by noticed in the least...

Thursday, January 28, 2010

EUST Dominates So Far

It's a sad day in one's birding life when he's thrilled to see a European Starling (no offense to our Old World comprades). But #3 comes out as European Starling as I caught a brief glimpse of two birds flying between two buildings over by that Mecca of retail known as Walmart. I'm catching up, punks!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Predictions for #3 anyone?

Yo pimps. Looks like I'll be working from my "office" in the Wastelands tomorrow. This means that I'll be staring out the window whenever possible. Finally, some friggin' daylight! So my goal is to up it to THREE. Thus far, I have Canada Goose and American Crow. Are there any takers for predicting what #3 will be? This has got to stop!

Tough going

Hi all,
It's becoming ever clearer to me that I have next to no chance of not finishing bottom, as those of you with scores lower than mine have such valid excuses as, I don't know, living in areas that get even colder winter weather than we had here for a few weeks, and every winter to boot, or working and not being able to see their gardens in daylight. Once the days begin to get longer, and migration starts, all of you will start racking up the 'warblers' (as someone from the Old World, it is always a bit strange referring to birds more closely related to buntings as warblers), vireos etc, whereas the only summer migrants that I can be in an way hopeful of getting would be Barn Swallow, Sand Martin (a.k.a. Bank Swallow), House Martin and Common Swift, and the two martins will take some effort and luck.
Indeed, I can only realistically expect 15 or so extra species in the whole year, which would leave me short of 40 on 31st December...
At the moment, we are still enjoying milder weather, and, while bird numbers have dropped a little in my tiny garden, the male Blackcap found on 10th January is still present, a Winter Wren in song yesterday was new for the year and a Eurasian Goldfinch that briefly landed on the rowan tree reminded me to add the species to my list, having had a flyover a week or so back.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Weekend Warrior

After finding two piles of Morning Dove feathers in my backyard without spotting the culprit I decided my porthole to the world (2'x2') was just too small to make me a serious yardbird competitor. So I (we really) decided to do something about it ......

Ah, much better and almost instantly rewarded with a Merlin screaming through the yard between the house and garage pursuing a, well, screaming starling....#21.

The garage goes next....

Monday, January 25, 2010

# 23

A most noisy varmit!

Today's Yardbirding

Gahh, I'm a complete failure. I can't even add one new bird to my yard list. I walked around the property today and while there weren't any new birds I did have a few enjoyable moments. In between the several snowflakes the clouds were spitting out I got a ray of sunshine which perfectly lit up a Brown Creeper for me. Such cool birds, I heard several others but only saw perhaps two individuals. Another yard star was the male N. Flicker and Hairy Woodpecker I saw near the creek. And I still can't get over the 4 RBNUs I have at a time at my feeders. What makes it odd is that they are scarce other places in Ohio this year, but I seem to be near a pocket of them. I found another pocket about 15 miles to the south. One of my favorite birds I think. I sure could use a winter finch like last year with its C. Redpolls, Pine Siskins and Purple Finches. I know you other guys haven't had too many finches either, so you feel my pain at least. This yard competition is actually making me look forward to migration even MORE this year.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

slowly but surely

#21, as photographed late morning from INSIDE my living room, looking across the street, behind the neighbor's house and across a large field... Still have not had these within my actual yard. No other new action, exc. I did see a gull spp 1/2 mile from the house, which would be a year yard bird.

Surprise Jan Yardbird...Peregrine Falcon!

I spent a half hour out exploring the newly flooded greens outside my apartment and picked up 5 yard year birds. The highlight however was an incredibly low flyover of a PEFA (less than 40 feet overhead) that cruised down the course (yardbird 74). The 52 Mallards were all dabbling in the newly exposed fluddles. Here's my eBird list (year birds italicized):

Cackling Goose (Richardson's) 2 (a real yearbird for me)
Canada Goose 321
Mallard 52
Sharp-shinned Hawk 1
Peregrine Falcon 1
Ring-billed Gull 1

Herring Gull (American) 22 (steady stream of gulls flying over to the west)
Mourning Dove 6
European Starling 8
American Tree Sparrow 9
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) 4
Northern Cardinal 2
House Finch 2
American Goldfinch 2
House Sparrow 6

You have NADA to say, Mr. Slacker!

Ok Slacker, may I remind you that once spring rolls around and I tally up my Warbler War points, if they are any where close to 09, you will have NOTHING to say! (for those who have not noticed this tid bit of information on the side bar here's a reminder of the score... Curtis: 38; Dave: 3). Seems I was the only one able to beat the Fritz at his WI yard in ANYTHING! Nuf said!
Oh, and no, there's not much going on here currently. The most interesting thing lately was this strange House Sparrow hybrid that Caleb has suggested is a HOSP x MUSW. I rather thought it was a HOSP X WHCR...any other thoughts?

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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Year of the Kat

Swamp Kat here. I live in a 640 sq. foot "cottage" on the mend in Escanaba, Michigan (that's in the Upper Peninsula). The mullet lot (lawn in the front - buckthorn/alder jungle in the back) is an impressive 50' X 146' . The idyllic scene is made slightly more interesting by the fact the property is perched upon the almost world famous Portage Marsh -- home of Michigan's only nesting Little Gulls just 34 short years ago. While the marsh is connected to Lake Michigan I cannot see open water from my yard - just a Serengeti of cattails. Since I have only stalked these parts since July I don't have an all time yard list so really looking forward to your encouragement to get me off on the right foot and to help me identify some of the less familiar marsh birds (they are such good hiders). I know some of the more petty and combative among you are nervous but don't worry I am a humble and graceful winner.

My yard year list stands at 20. Notables; Red-bellied Woodpecker, Ring-necked Pheasant, Fox Sparrow.

My rest-of-the Winter "wish-list"; Northern Shrike, Bohemian Waxwing, Glaucous Gull. If not for these birds I could sleep until Punxsutawney Phil says it's safe to come out of my den.

Enjoy those cute widdle kinglets....Krazy with a ker-ke-do.

Views from the Wasteland

Thought you guys would be interested in a few pics of my 'yard' so you can see first-hand the top-notch possibilities that come my way each and every day. Check out this action! This is the view to the north...spent a lot of time this fall looking down this street (Westhampton Drive...ha! I laugh at street names anymore these days). The great thing about our apartment (I refuse to call this place a town home) is that there are lots of windows so I can see stuff fly by quite frequently. As you can all see, there's basically NO vegetation so all I have to hope for are fly-bys. The sad thing is that I don't even have a sight-line to the retention pond to my northwest.

These are my saw-whet trees. One of these days, I will find one roosting here. No laughing!

So that's Booner's yard.

Do Dream Yard Birds Count?

I had a dream the other night that all you guys wanted to come visit me and witness my wasteland of a yard in person. During your visit, I found a Varied Thrush hanging out on my roof. Needless to say, my yard was thus vindicated as a primo birding location and I was able to up my O-10 list to '3'.

Dreams are soooooooo weird....


21- Merlin!

Let me start out by saying, Merlins just may be my favorite bird. They have skill, looks, and most importantly- "tude". They don't really give a fuck about anything, and just keep-on, keeping on. I can only hope that when I am finally smote from the earth for my various blasphemy's, that the many hands of Vishnu decide to remold me into a merlin for my next life.

Oh yah, Purple Finch today too.

Spring is early at the Putnut residence

Just looked outside, naked eye, and was astonished to see a Golden-crowned Kinglet foliage gleaning in the black oak! Normally I have to wait until March for that bird. Note that other than Warning, who lives somewhere near the Tropic of Cancer, if I remember right, I am the only one with this species for 2010... Couldn't manage a pic before it left, unfortunately.

Friday, January 22, 2010

A final new yardbirder- KRAZY KAPLAN

OK, lest this thing get out of hand, I am introducing one final new addition to the blog, and at the same time closing the door on new members for the time being. Let's try this out for a year before we add any more. This time, I welcome famed yooper Joe Kaplan, a man who tries hard but is still working out the finer points of bird identification such as Phoebe vs Pewee, and is hoping his life list will break 400 this year. With a little instruction from good birders (us not being included in this category), perhaps he will have stuff like this worked out by next year.

In seriousness, Joe can trade barbs with the best of them, and unfortunately for us he lives within very short distance of Lake Michigan near Escanaba, right on the fringe of Portage Marsh. This guarantees he will see a lot of cool stuff from within the yard, so I was somewhat hesitant to welcome him as I was hoping to have a fighting chance this year. But hey, the more SOBs we can have onboard, the more fun we'll have. In any event I thought I'd kick things off by showing you the chain of stores he owns selling fireworks in IN and IL:
and the view from his backyard:Joe- how's about a synopsis of your yard, its location and acreage, some aerial imagery, and a puerile attempt at trashtalk?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

While the slag heap was dreaming of bird he might see in his yard someday, I decided to go out and get it done. But yeah Davey, I too have birds that are just a few miles down the road that don't deem my scruffy yard worthy of their attention, most notably - Rough-legged Hawk, Northern Harrier, and American Pipit (you'd think even a pathetic birder like me would get these as a fly over or something). While I failed to get anything new to the yard as I hiked the land with my dog Jack, I did find some fun birds including a bird I forgot to count before (EABL) and a fly over Horned Lark. These were yardbirds #40 and 41.
The land was pretty birdy today with a roving band of corvids harassing the local pair of Red-shouldered Hawks, Red-tailed Hawk, and I suspect the local Barred Owl next door. Those rascals. Speaking of Rascals, I hope you other Yard listers can find some good birds of your own soon. Or, just dream on.
Location:Home Observation date:     
1/20/10 Number of species: 25  
Canada Goose     3 
Red-shouldered Hawk     2 
Red-tailed Hawk     1 
Mourning Dove    1 
Red-bellied Woodpecker     2 
Downy Woodpecker     3 
Hairy Woodpecker     1 
Northern Flicker     1 
Blue Jay     12 
American Crow     12 
Horned Lark   1 
Carolina Chickadee     5 
Tufted Titmouse     3 
White-breasted Nuthatch     4 
Carolina Wren     1 
Golden-crowned Kinglet     2 
Eastern Bluebird    4 
American Tree Sparrow     4 
Song Sparrow     4 
White-throated Sparrow     4 
Dark-eyed Junco     5 
Northern Cardinal     10 
House Finch     8 
American Goldfinch     8 
House Sparrow     5
- B. Warner

the lake competition

I like this idea Ben, its time to tally up our lake counts- how do we do it? With in a mile or half a mile from the lake? Quarter? In eyeshot?


18 & 19

RB Nut and a Shrike today bitches! Catching up Brigadoon!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

HOFI, finally

Hey chumpz- Finally added my 2010 HOFI for the yard today. Watch out warning, I am on your heelz.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Warning speaks

Greetings bird gods. Prepare yourselves for some serious yard birding competition. I started the year off right with some of this action on Jan. 2nd.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak
This probable SY male Rose-breasted Grosbeak is pretty rare around these parts, its a first state record for the month of Jan. in Ohio. Definitely a good bird for my Ohio January list (now up to 80 sp.).
A little about myself, I'm about to turn 28, I live out in the overgrown rural area near Sunbury Ohio, on 50 acres. We have a creek running through the property which is lacking in much mature forest, but has a lot of firs successional weedy fields etc which are nice for woodcocks and YWARs, FISP, etc. Other than birding I'm into other naturalist type crap, skiing, rock climbing, trail running and mountain biking. I'm not really the Slagermeister's mentor, but have showed him around Ohio some - where I've certainly learned him a thing or two. I'm ashamed to post my low yard list number, truth be told I've never birded my own back yard too intensively, been too preoccupied by state-listing (up to 319 now).
Today I had a group of about 20 American Tree Sparrows out by the feeders along with the usual Dark-eyed Junco's etc. I've been having a good time watching Red-breasted Nuthatches at the feeders and yesterday I had a Carolina Wren at the feeders, what now?!
This will be a nice excuse to boost my numbers out back and to rub it in your faces. Consider yourselves duly warned by the Warner.

17 and slowly climbing.....and good yard birds of yore

So its a grey day here at the Owl Ranch, but for whatever reason, diversity has been good.

Birds seen so far this morning are
Mallard- 2
Bald Eagle- 1
(Yankee) Herring Gull-8
Rock Pigeon- 5
Mourning Dove- 3
Downy Woodpecker-2
Hairy Woodpecker- 1
Black-capped Chickadee- 12
White-breasted Nuthatch- 2
Bohemian Waxwing- 7
Dark-eyed Junco- 1 (species not seen everyday)
PINE GROSBEAK- 1 (species number 17 for the year)
House Finch- 22
American Goldfinch- 5

So like yoo-hoo for me! All though my sighting of the day would be the 20 Long-tailed Ducks down the harbor this morning. I had been seeing 3-5 when I looked , but there was an influx from somewhere.

Well as I stare at my finchless feeders, I thought a few shots from last years finchy-good time at the house of TOR would be in order. Of of these days I will get out the camera and get some shots of what my humble yard actually looks like.

Well for now, memories of good birds past.....

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cedar Waxwings and Mallards

This afternoon, while on the west edge of the property watching the two resident Red-tailed Hawks, a tight flock of passerines flew into view. Within a few seconds 25 Cedar Waxwing (#24) barreled overhead. Close on their tails came an additional 15. They were all heading the same direction downtown and that usually means the fruit bearing ornamental shrubs in front of the insurance office are ripe for picking. A quick drive there found 173 CEDW chowing down. As I turned down my street coming home 7 Mallard flew in front of the car prompting a stop at the base of my drive to see if they would loop back. Two of them did providing #25 for the yard list.

Harry, for somebody who didn't think they would be successful in this competition, you certainly have come from behind rapidly! Dukky seams to be making a good showing too.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

BRCR x 2

Location: Highgate Yard & Woodlot
Observation date: 1/16/10
Number of species: 9

Downy Woodpecker - Picoides pubescens 1
Blue Jay - Cyanocitta cristata 1
Tufted Titmouse - Baeolophus bicolor 1
White-breasted Nuthatch - Sitta carolinensis 2
Brown Creeper - Certhia americana 2 - #17 for the 2010
Northern Cardinal - Cardinalis cardinalis 1
House Finch - Carpodacus mexicanus 4
American Goldfinch - Carduelis tristis 9
House Sparrow - Passer domesticus 50

Friday, January 15, 2010

Rockin' & Rollin'

Yesterday afternoon while doing a bit of work from home, I shouted for joy nearly giving my wife a heart attack. Numero dos winged its way over the house and 'cawed' a few times. I haven't seen American Crow 'round these parts in quite some time.

Aahhh....life is good.


A flock of 13 American Robin (#22) flew over as I finished filling the feeders this morning. A subsequent walk of the property totaled 18 species with 4 Pine Siskin (#23) chattering in the tree-tops. The snow is diminished enough now that snowshoes aren't as necessary. Here's the eBird list:

Observation date: 1/15/10
Number of species: 18

Herring Gull (American) 1
Mourning Dove 2
Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
Downy Woodpecker 2
Blue Jay 5
American Crow 3
Black-capped Chickadee 4
Tufted Titmouse 1
Red-breasted Nuthatch 2
White-breasted Nuthatch 1
American Robin 13
European Starling 5
Dark-eyed Junco 8
Northern Cardinal 8
House Finch 5
Pine Siskin 4
American Goldfinch 11
House Sparrow 42

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Finally got a Tree Sparrow at the feeder (Spizella, not Passer, Harry), albeit only briefly, for my 2010 list today. It ain't easy being behind the Duck boy, and especially being behind Haas, so it felt good to move ahead of them losers. Now, if I can just get a CANG with all this thaw up... And Harry, are you really at 18 for 2010? If so, that's incredible, and enjoy your lead while it lasts!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Flyover Watching at Its Finest

Dudes! I'm excited to be entering the fray. Some of you may have it bad in terms of yard "habitat." However, I challenge any of you to top THIS! Funny, eh? There's seriously no natural habitat anywhere within the sight lines of my "condo." With the exception of the occasional ornamental pine tree or flower plantings, I'm left with nothing but sky. Not so bad on an autumn day with a stiff northwestern wind. Raptor watching can be quite interesting. After 4 months at this location, my yard list has yet to top 30. I do have some good ticks, though. Merlin flying down the street chasing EUSTs. High flying flocks of Sandhill Cranes. A quick flyby of a small group of Bank Swallows while checking the mail. If anything, I've learned to always remember to look up occasionally when birding amidst proper habitat.

Too bad Hammel Woods (to my southeast) isn't in my backyard...those lucky b-tards in the trailer park have it all!!!

Well, thanks for the invite and I'm glad to be a part of this historic occasion. My list to date stands at 1. Granted I have been out of commission for several days, and my work schedule dictates that I sit in an office from well before sunup to well after sundown, I'm still rather proud of at least getting Canada Goose. I'm predicting Prairie Falcon as #2.

Oh...does anyone know the finer points of separating out Blackpoll and Bay-breasted nocturnal flight calls??????



2nd Place 4 Duck Boy

EUST - 15
BLJA - 16
Look out, I'm on a roll! :)

Monday, January 11, 2010

The European Canon is here...

Hi all,
First off, the excuses. My garden is tiny, it is surrounded by concrete, the avifauna of Ireland is impoverished, as is usual for island fauna in general, we are too far west, with no great landmass to the north and no land due south for hundreds of miles, to be on a migration route, I tend to bird elsewhere, and, perhaps, in your American vernacular, I may even suck...who knows?

Now, for those of you living in the home of Uncle Sam, I understand that the average American (meaning people less intelligent than you lot, presumably...you are all birders...but let's not make any assumptions here) has a very poor grasp of geography, so: Ireland is a relatively small island nation, divided into the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, sitting on the western edge of Europe, blocked from getting so many mouth-watering Siberian birds by those Brits (I have British friends, I won't start!), and is probably the best place in the world for seeing Buff-breasted Sandpipers, given that they appear to dematerialise on the breeding grounds and reappear somewhere in South America. Cork is on the south of the island, though, regrettably for me, Cork city is not on the coast proper, even if it does meet the saline waters of Cork Harbour...we might get passerine migrants, including rare ones, if it was.

My garden is tiny, as I said. Caleb kindly sent me a pic showing the position of my house from the air...we won't even ask what a US Air Force unmanned drone was doing flying over my house, though, even had I seen it, I'd probably have misidentified it as a Raven or maybe my first garden Common Buzzard at a push. Here it is.

What do you mean you can't see it? Oh well, here's a closer image.

A not so subtle plug of the one time my team won the Great Island Bird Race (no, I didn't just steal the trophy, and the reason I was so glum is that we won it in January 2008, yet the pic was taken that November).

So, basically, with a running garden total of 52, all I can hope is to offer tantalising glimpses of bird life in a whole different region, some of which may have vagrancy potential to North America.

Given the recent increase, for example, one of these may stray to somewhere like Newfoundland some day...

So, at the moment, we're suffering our worst winter for over 25 years, and I understand this to be the case in much of the US also. Hopefully, this will not cause any extinctions here in Ireland, be they local or national, but it is inevitable that many species will exist at greatly reduced levels for at least a few years. That said, this weather has led to a new species for my garden, in the form of 1-2 Fieldfares, and it was no surprise that there were also a few Redwing for the last 2 days, a species that I saw there as a kid way back in the early 80s, but which I had only recorded flying over on migration since. A male Blackcap also put in a brief appearance yesterday.
That said, I may have had more species this year than I have listed: had I known that I would be taking part in this challenge, I could have kept track. Needless to say, I shall be more vigilant now...I don't know why I bother, though, I'm going to finish rock bottom anyway...

Our first Palearctic yardbirder! (Welcome Harry)

Well guys, things are about to get more interesting. I would like to introduce to you my friend Harry Hussey of County Cork, Ireland (!): our newest yardbird blogger! For him, American Robin would be a mega, while Fieldfare, Blackcap, and Black-headed Gull are basically trash.

Also, Harry seems to be much more mature than any of us, but from chatting with him over the past year on all matters birds, it is apparent that his skill level is just as low as ours. So, Harry- let's see what your yard looks like, and then you can start educating us about all things Palearctic!
Yesterday's yard list almost exclusively at the feeders. Stupid starling is my 20th year yard bird.

Observation date: 1/10/10
Number of species: 13

Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
Downy Woodpecker 2
Blue Jay 1
Black-capped Chickadee 3
Tufted Titmouse 1
Red-breasted Nuthatch 2
White-breasted Nuthatch 1
European Starling* 1
Dark-eyed Junco 42
Northern Cardinal 3
House Finch 1
American Goldfinch 12
House Sparrow 20

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Yes, I'm eBirding...

Location: Highgate Yard & Woodlot
Observation date: 1/10/10
Number of species: 5

Cooper's Hawk - Accipiter cooperii 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker - Melanerpes carolinus 1 (#14 for 2010)
Downy Woodpecker - Picoides pubescens 1
Dark-eyed Junco - Junco hyemalis 3
House Finch - Carpodacus mexicanus 4
House Sparrow - Passer domesticus 50

*Just a note, you can't paste this info into the blog post while in Html

My first official site survey

Well ladies. Here is the damage in 10 minutes of "site surveying" my yard:

1 Red-bellied Woodpecker
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Hairy Woodpecker
1 American Crow
1 Black-capped Chickadee
5 Tufted Titmouse
2 White-breasted Nuthatch
4 Dark-eyed Junco
4 American Goldfinch

This is an interesting subsample of the bird present in my yard each day, which includes at least 14 DEJU, 6+ TUTI, likely 8-10 BCCH, 4+ DOWO, 2+ HAWO, etc.

Also had a Kestrel about 1 mile up the road, which would still be a life yardbird. And I had an unknown Buteo sp. fly over briefly. Rough-legged Hawk is high on my mind. And my dream yardbird for winter would definitely have to be CORA. I am far enough north that there are a very few individuals around, but most of the time they seem to stick to the larger forests such as the Rogue River State Game Area (where I saw my only Kent Co. CORA last spring).

For some reason I am still missing my year yardbird HOSP, EUST, HOFI, and some other seemingly easy birds which have been here in numbers as recently as December.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Where have you been!

Yes, it's crazy that this is a life yard bird, but today I FINALLY saw my first American Tree Sparrow in the yard. Where have you been the last year and a half! That's 107 and 13 for 2010.

Año Nuevo!

Spent 40 minutes out in the cold and saw the following species. 5 species were new for the year and here's the complete checklist.
Welcome Skye, and Aaron should be on board soon.

Canada Goose - 7
Cooper's Hawk* - 1
Red-tailed Hawk* - 2
Mourning Dove - 7
American Crow - 2
Black-capped Chickadee - 4
European Starling - 78
American Tree Sparrow* - 19 (high count for the "yard"...thanks to two feeders within view from my designated area)
Dark-eyed Junco* - 13
Northern Cardinal - 1
American Goldfinch* - 1
House Sparrow - 6

Bonus mammal:

Coyote - 1

Friday, January 8, 2010

Welcome to the Jungle

Hey beeya-iches,

That's right, what this little seance needed was moi!

I'm sure you all are drooling over my yard Solitaire, of which I had numerous times over 3 months, including a morning when it sat in a cedar and sang! But what I really want to point out is the Carolina Wren! That's right Carolina Wren. Quit yer snickering, that's like that Buckeye birder (yah, I'm talking to you!), getting a Bohemian Waxwing at his place, (of which I had 7 in the yard this morning.....)

Also why Put-out lists Clay-colored Sparrow as a highlight of my little yard, a regular spring and fall migrant, when obviously the 4 different Glaucous Gulls I've had are so much better, well that's just a sign of his provincial ignorance......

It's ON!!!!


'Haastage" starting from 2nd place in all-time list

Just got the "Haastage taker"'s all-time yardlist updated, and have come to find out he is in 2nd place already! Even worse, he already has the following species on his YARD LIST:

-Townsend's Solitaire (GEEZ)
-Harris's Sparrow (still a STATE bird for me)
-Carolina Wren (great bird in UP, esp that far north)
-Greater White-fronted Goose
-Clay-colored Sparrow
-All of Michigan's regular finches!

Time to get busy overcoming this gap...

Thursday, January 7, 2010


You know how satisfying it is to see Mr. Fitzbirdo in 4th place?! VERY!
And, yes, I see all of your bantering aimed at me about eBird... well, a wife, 2 kids and 2 jobs have put me nearly 2 years behind on my own life list work...(how's that for a sob story?). Seriously, I want to get onto eBird more, I'll see what I can do it being a new year and all.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Sky Dreamer is in + new columns in table

So, Skylark (Skye Haas) is IN. He currently is without a computer and internet in his humble domicile in Marquette, MI, but will have it within a few days. I look forward to whipping his tail over the next year, even if he scores Harris's Sparrow and Greater White-fronted Goose as yard birds.

Secondly, there are 3 new columns in the tally spreadsheet requiring attention:

1) Fitzroy's All-time Illinois yard list.
2) Duckstra and Slobber 2010 yard list.
3) Skylark's All-time and 2010 yard lists.

So, is Aaron Boone officially out? Are there any others whom we should invite?


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

2010 UP and RUNNING

OK Dweebs. Just made my first entry into the spreadsheet and am up and running with 13 species for 2010. Best bird so far: Brown Creeper which came to the trees near the feeder with chickadees this afternoon (first in months, actually!). Big misses: Eastern Bluebird (seen in the subdivision this AM but not in my yard), Turkey (Dec 28), House Finch, House Sparrow.

If you're all OK with it I will invite Skye Haas to join us (Marquette, MI), who has an interesting yard with quite different diversity than us.