My 10 Favorite Birds of 2011

2011 was a great year for birding for me. This year I saw eastern birds I had never seen before. I was able to see 145 year birds and 61 life birds. I was hoping to break the 200 barrier, so I’ll try for that next year (starting tomorrow!).

1. Long-tailed Duck (Toronto, Lake Ontario)

2. Tufted Titmouse (Central Park, NYC)

3. Great Gray Owl (our farmyard)

4. Wilson’s Snipe (across the road from our farmyard)

5. Western Meadowlark (the pasture across the road from our farmyard)

6. Yellow-rumped Warbler (the woods down the road)

7. Ruddy Duck (the slough across the road)

8. Common Merganser (the slough across the road)

9. Turkey Vulture (provincial park near town)

10. Pine Grosbeak (the woods down the road)


Happy New Year and happy birding in 2012!

Winter Poll Results

Thank you very much to everyone who voted on my Winter Poll.

The results are in (below), and the Favorite Winter Bird is the Bohemian Waxwing!

Common Redpoll: 2 votes

Pine Grosbeak: 3 votes

Bohemian Waxwing: 4 votes

Other votes: 1 vote for the Northern Cardinal, 1 vote for the King Eider, and 1 vote for Hoary Redpoll.

Thanks very much to all who voted and played along with my winter game! Happy New Year!

Christmas Presents

I received some wonderful presents this year, most of which were birding-related. My mother bought most of my presents from Etsy, (since we are in Canada),, and Book Depository. Here’s a list:

:: My favorite presents this year are five letterpress prints by Dutch Door Press, a letterpress and design studio in San Francisco. These are the five prints I received (I was able to find links to only three of them):

American Goldfinch

Hermit Thrush

Western Meadowlark (see below)

Northern Cardinal

Black-capped Chickadee

:: My mother went a little calendar crazy this year. I received

Charley Harper 2012 Calendar which isn’t all birds but has some beautiful pictures,

* and also a small desk calendar, “little birds” by artist Bill Semann, from his Etsy shop,

:: I received the following books:

aaaaw to zzzzzd: The Words of Birds by John Bevis (I think my mother got this from Book Depository)

Popular Mechanic’s How to Charm a Bird: Create A Backyard Haven with Bird Houses, Baths & Feeders

The Geese of Beaver Bog by Bernd Heinrich

National Geographic Guide to Birding Hot Spots of the United States by Mel White

The Life of the Skies: Birding at the End of Nature by Jonathan Rosen

In the Field, Among the Feathered: A History of Birders & Their Guides by Thomas R. Dunlap

Nests: Fifty Nests and the Birds That Built Them by photographer Sharon Beals; this book has such fabulous photos

Global Birding: Traveling the World in Search of Birds by Les Beletsky, published by National Geographic


:: One book I received that isn’t birding-related is I Am Half-Sick of Shadows, a Flavia de Luce mystery novel by Alan Bradley. I’ve read Mr. Bradley’s three other books, and I can’t wait to read this one.

Feathers on Friday

If you would like to join me for Feathers on Friday, please put the link to your blog post in the comments and I will add a link to my post.

Four Common Redpolls started coming to my feeders on the Monday the 19th, and I love watching them. Here are two of them feeding at my nyjer feeder,