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.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


So, my neighbor just pointed out an interesting fact: our neighborhood association jointly owns several "commons" in our subdivision, including a several acre plot adjacent to my yard. Walking to the far end of this commons, I realized that I have a better view of the western horizon that I do when I stand at the far SW corner of my property as I have been.

So, since I pay my dues, the 'commons' area is technically mine (too). Anybody got a problem with me using the 'commons' that abuts my actual yard as part of this competition? (How else am I ever going to score a duck other than MALL, HOME, and WODU?)


  1. I'm cool with that if I can walk across the Portage Marsh (also a "commons" for which I pay my dues on 15 April) and count birds in the pond I cannot see.

    I think the rules of a yard should be if you can sleep on it consider it yours.

  2. I don't care. It abuts your property, technically is yours (albeit fractionally) and will gain you a few species tops. I like Kaplan's rationale for any public lands, lol!
    I'll really get a kick out of it if Curtis vetoes it!

  3. Not fair! My garden is tiny, I live in a bird-poor part of the world (in terms of overall numbers of species), and I don't have access to any convenient communally-owned land.

  4. I'm with Harry! Having a rather small yard I find this to be a no go with me.

  5. Yeah Haas- as if you need any help in this contest... Seriously, this is a question about what consitutes a "yard", and since my family hangs out in these commons all the time it does seem like my yard. But if people feel strongly I guess I'll go along with it. And Harry- you have to get out on your roof and start sky-watching! I am really curious what stuff is overflying your house.

  6. Putzy I say you can use it it's not very big any how

  7. Kaplan's right! Any public land should technically count so long as we are not delinquent on our taxes! So does this mean I can count LEOW because I found it on state gamelands?! Cool!
    ln all actuality I have to agree with his decision being reasonably based on conscience...but then again, how reasonable is Caleb's conscience?

  8. Technically, I don't own any land at my residence and my yard basically consists of a cement slab.

    Also, I've got a retention pond that I could maybe get some good stuff on...but it's not within my sight lines from my cement slab. However, if I wandered down a bit from my cement slab, I could view the pond while simultaneously viewing my slab. Are those birds countable? Ownership, taxes, etc. don't even come into play here so where do I stand?

    FYI...I'm more than happy with just counting birds from my 'yard'.

  9. Caleb's question prompted me to look up my subdivision plat from 1919...BINGO! My tiny 50' foot lot extends back to what was once Green Bay making me a Great Lakes Riparian owner. My riparian rights include navigating, hunting, bathing, and birding all of Lake Michigan!! -- If we go with Caleb rules I would try to show some restraint, and only count birds that I could see from my yard if -hypothetically - I was standing in it. In fact, yesterday when I was exercising my riparian rights across the portage marsh (<1000 meters from my upland property) with my "yard" as a backdrop I had meadowlark, gadwall, green-winged teal, and redhead -- all would have been yardbirds, though only the meadowlark would have been visible from my yard.

    My personal feeling is this is a "yardbird" competition not a "hoodbird" competition but I'll defer to Caleb the Commons (or the common Caleb) to make the call what constitutes a yard (hummm, what about unlimited airspace above your property?).

  10. Well, I have decided (mainly due to the distinct whining noise coming from the north) to bag the "commons" as part of my yard. Actually, I don't really need it, as my view of the horizon is only marginally better. Today's raptor migration was easily viewed from the corner of my actual lot, so for now I'll stick with that. Watch out kitty boy- only a few more species and I'll have you again.


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