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.

Friday, September 30, 2011

hello Huffy

We're now tied at 52, with the addition of BAWW and MYWA.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Been a lot slower the past few days since the last big push of neotrops went over, but was pleased (and not surprised given the habitat behind my place) to have a calling Red-shouldered 2 days ago. Since then the pickins are slim.

On a side note: my awesome 21c microphone from Oldbird.org bit it on the first rainstorm, with 1 inch of water inside the watertight compartment! Called Oldbird and this is the first in 30+ which have come back. Fortunately for me their customer service is tops and it is being replaced as we speak. Looking forward to being able to listen to the sky from inside ASAP. Hussey- 2 more sp. and you are destroyed on the life yardlist competition, and Booner, get busy cause 71 ain't gonna last in 12th place for long, m'boy...

The Big Year?

Um, has anyone else see the trailer for this copy-kat movie?


No similarities with any of the characters on this site....

biggest thing for birds since Silent Spring?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Hey finally a bird to report!

I just had a Solitary Sandpiper go over the Haas Tract, calling away in the fog. This is only the 2nd or 3rd time I've had this bird from the house, and its been a few years. A flyover Greater Yellowlegs from a few weeks ago is my only other shorebird for the year here. Still annoyed at JD for scoring a Spottie on his forested hilltop a couple miles south of me....

Well I have never had such a dead yard in the many falls I have lived here, its completely ridiculous. I have NO idea where the birds are, my yard can be such a good spot to watch fall warblers in, this year, they have been near completely absent- its terrible.

On the good side, I am up to 91, my sights on Curtis and Boots in my rear-view mirror...

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Streaking over the yard this afternoon.

I'll be stuck in Brazil for the next week, missing more of fall prime time, so will be real disappointed Haas if you haven't landed a nice counter punch in the "epic" battle for 8th place.

Friday, September 23, 2011


Well, with apathy and lameness as the status quo here (watch out Booner, you're first to fall), I may have the lead here in shorter order than I expected. (if only I'd have moved in August when EAKI, BAOR, Empids, RTHU, and countless other early fall migrants were still around). It is fun building a life yardlist from scratch, and here is how it has gone in the first 3 full days:

YTVI (still singing)
CMWA (nice spanking adult male)
ROPI (nice after trying and missing for 2 years at the last place!)
HOSP (yes this took 3 days to add)

RHWO (wow- this species took 1.5 years to get at my last house, not 1.5 days!)
REVI/WAVI/PHVI (mew call heard only)
WOTH- 1 NFC (probably Veeries were in the mix too- but I need to look at sonograms to be sure)

BDOW (singing at night)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Guess who's back?

Silly Putty, my friends, is back in the saddle BABY, after a long and dismal respite never to be discussed again. Though the hour is late for calendar year 2011, the insides are again churning for yardbird domination. Why? Because I am the newest resident of Montcalm County, where I just moved yesterday into a small rural house well-suited for beating the tar out of a bunch of... er, let's be real, getting my ass beaten all over again with pure enjoyment.

This house is on 1 acre of wooded habitat, not far from a quite large lake with adjoining smaller lake well-suited to Ixobrychus exilis and other gems. Witness:
This house will undoubtedly outdo my last in waterbirds if for the proximity of such a large waterfowl and waterbird magnet. Across the street lurks an overgrown old field (a bit late for BRTH and FISP this year, perhaps, though I'll try):
The view of the horizon above the old field is rather impressive too, totalling almost 180 degrees of the sky hemisphere, which should help for flyover raptors and waterfowl. Another added benefit is the presence of low thickets of vegetation in the back yard (something totally lacking at my last residence, which is why I never recorded COYE, SWSP, LISP, MOWA, etc.):Anyway, since finishing moving in less than 24 hours ago, I have mounted the brand spanking new Bill Evans 21c microphone on the roof (currently recording and listening to a live feed featuring 20+ SWTH, 1 GCTH, and 10+ warblers since starting typing this message), plus set up the feeding station and watering hole, and lured in the local BCCH flock to check for any lingering early/mid September warblers I am about to miss (only MAWA obliged):So, to sum up, GAME ON, beeches.

Here is today's and yesterday's eBird checklists for this newly minted patch:


Sanderling only 6585.20 feet away! #176.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

The Cheddarlands hit #71 yesterday when a YBFL turned up in the neighbor's ash around 830AM. I had GREAT looks at this guy for about 30 minutes. Then an hour later, I went back out to look for more migrants. The YBFL was still in the same tree, flycatching like no tomorrow. This went on for the entire day, until I last went out around 730PM. This is by far the most extensive study of this species that I've ever had. I even managed scope views on a couple of occasions.

Other migrants were AMRE and REVI. I'm finding that the silver maples (which nominate the neighborhood) just do not pull in many migrants. From my vantage point, I have yet to see an oak species in any of the neighbor's yards.

Other highlights yesterday were southbound BWHA and a few mid-day groups of CONIs.