Off to the Big Apple!

On the second week of July my family is taking a trip to New York City. Unfortunately, it’s not a pleasure trip (more of a “family business trip”) so birding is low on the list. I won’t have lots of time for birding, but I hope to see some new species and meet some New York birders. I’ve never birded in Central Park in the Summer (just in the Fall and Winter, and I know Spring and Fall are the best seasons), so I’m hoping to see something new. If I don’t, I’m sure a lot of the regulars will be great subjects to photograph!

I’m planning to go on one another one of Robert DeCandido and Deb Allen’s Central Park bird walks (I’ve been twice before), so if I do I’ll post on it. I would love to meet some NYC birders and go birding together.

I won’t have my laptop with me so I probably won’t be able to post while I’m there, but I’ll try to have some posts lined up before I leave.

Summer Poll Results 2013

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

The results are in (below), and the Favorite Summer Bird is the American White Pelican!

American White Pelican: 7 votes

Barn Swallow: 6 votes

Killdeer: 3 votes

Other votes: 3 votes for Ruby-throated Hummingbird, 2 votes for American Avocet, 2 votes for Eastern Bluebird, 1 vote for House Finch, 1 vote for Painted Bunting, 1 vote for Chimney Swift, 1 vote for Northern Parula, 1 vote for Blackburnian Warbler, 1 vote for Arctic Warbler, 1 vote for Common Nighthawk, 1 vote for Purple Martin, 1 vote for Eurasian Hobby, 1 vote for Yellow Warbler, 1 vote for Swainson’s Thrush, 1 vote for Summer Tanager, 1 vote for Western Meadowlark, 1 vote for Mountain Bluebird, 1 vote for Clay-colored Sparrow, 1 vote for Rose-breasted Grosbeak, 1 vote for Mourning Warbler, 1 vote for Baltimore Oriole, 1 vote for Northern Cardinal, and 1 vote for a Savannah Sparrow.

I hope you have a chance this summer to see your favorite summer bird at least once!

Thanks very much to all who voted and played along with my summer game!


Feathers on Friday

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

This Cedar Waxwing was fly-catching from its perch and I digiscoped this photo,


More Feathers on Friday Posts:

From Frank at The Early Birder: Early Start in Suffolk

Birding News #23

:: Declines in birds across the globe are providing evidence of a rapid deterioration in the global environment that is affecting all life on earth, but Effective nature conservation is affordable and it works, according to a report released last week by BirdLife International at its 2013 World Congress in Ottawa, hosted by BirdLife International, Bird Studies Canada, and Nature Canada.

:: Also at the BirdLife International World Congress, Canadian writer and birder Margaret Atwood announced the founding of Birds in Storytelling, a project where people take inspiration from bird to create stories and poems, with the help of Wattpad, an online library for computers, smart phones and tablets. 

:: Between one-quarter and one-half of all birds are highly vulnerable to climate change, according to the most comprehensive assessment to date of the impact of global warming on life, as reported in New Scientist. The study, one of the biggest of its kind, assessing all of the world’s birds, amphibians and corals, draws on the work of more than 100 scientists over five years.

:: NPR goes inside the the Smithsonian’s Feather Forensics Lab with Carla Dove

:: Chimney Swifts have taken up residence in the Westminster Presbyterian Church

:: A story from BirdWatching Magazine about how climate change affects bird migration

:: Reporter Paul Nicholson with The London Free Press goes birding with Bird Studies Canada biologist (and my friend) Jody Allair

:: The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) Scotland, along with the Scottish Ornithologists’ Club (SOC) have backed a petition against the licensed control of Common Buzzards in Scotland.

:: A new study examines the activity patterns of four bird species that migrate to northern Alaska and finds complicated rhythms

Great posts in birding blogs this week:

:: From Shyloh at Beaking Off: Great Horned Owls and their nest

:: From Mia at On the Wing Photography: Western Burrowing Owls are declining throughout their range

:: From Drew at Nemesis Bird: a review of the new birding app, “Songbirds of North America”

:: From Laurence at Butler’s Birds: Bowman Beach: Willet Tern Out Ok

:: From Bird Boy: Perplexing Plumage

:: From Kim at Birds Calgary (note the new address): Sunday Showcase: Birds of Bragg Creek 

:: From Sharon at Birdchick: The latest Birdchick podcast

Summer Poll 2013

To celebrate the Equinox and first day of Summer yesterday, I have a poll!

Vote for your favorite Summer bird by the evening of Friday, June 28th, and I will post the results on Saturday, June 29th. Thank you!


Feathers on Friday

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

This Savannah Sparrow was sitting on one of our fences so I digiscoped a few photos, and here’s one,


More Feathers on Friday Posts:

From Frank at The Early Birder: Singing in the wind

Young Birder of the Year Contest and New Blog

This year, I decided I wanted to compete in the American Birding Association’s Young Birder of the Year Contest. It will be tight for time with other things I have to do, but I think I can do it. There are five modules to choose from. I’ve chosen to compete in four of the five categories, both two major modules, Field Notebook and Community/Conservation Action, and Photography and Writing as my supporting modules.

I had a difficult time deciding what I could do for my Community Action project as I must spend at least 40 hours on my project. If my Summer plans work out and I get to be away for part or all of August, I need a project I could work on from a distance. Fortunately, a project I’ve been thinking about for our local naturalist so club, to improve communication and hopefully  increase interest seems to be a good fit. I would also like to include posts to document the new pipeline activity about to start in the area, which I started writing about here.

I decided I would start a blog and Facebook group for my local naturalist society to let members know about field trips, meetings, wildlife, and conservation issues around our area, to stay in touch better and keep up with activities. And hopefully I’ll be able to interest some new members to join, especially since our numbers are dwindling.

Here is the blog, which I hope is of some interest even to readers who aren’t in our club who might live some distance away, and I’m planning to get the Facebook group up this weekend. I just published a post about native wildflowers and have one flower I could not ID, so if you know, please leave a comment!

Yellow Lady’s Slippers,