That's right all, today is my one year blog anniversary!!! A year ago today, I decided to start a blog as a way to journal the bird observations from my yard and other local places and little did I know it would grow into what it is today. I had one field guide, these tiny binoculars I couldn't use, I was very uncomfortable with a camera, and not only did I often mid ID birds, but I couldn't even call them by their right name. Let's see, seagull, Bafflehead and Canadian Goose are just a few to come to mind, HA! I have spotted the errors that I made earlier in my blog and chose to leave them there even though I know they were wrong because that was indeed who I was then and it serves as a reminder on how much I have grown (all though do have to admit I fixed some of my raptor mistakes because I just couldn't help it).
One of the first pictures I took above of a Tufted Titmouse in my yard on Thanksgiving morning. I decided to give all of the backyard birds and other critters a feast that day and will do the same this year! Will have more fun planning their menu than my own! ;-)
And the Henslow's Sparrow in Montague, MA.
My introduction to the Forbush Bird Club at Bolton Flats after birding on my own for a few months. Have seen a lot of things with the club and met a lot of wonderful people.
And a lot of cool birds like this Saw-whet Owl in Uxbridge.
My first Grasshopper Sparrow in Sutton
And my first Merlin at Quabbin.
I went from being uncomfortable with using a camera to attempting to digiscope with Alan's awesome scope.
And then there were the fantastic birds! I am telling you, November is probably a great time to start birding because it can only get better right!!! My first introduction to warblers like the Pine Warbler above checking out the Ipod in which his song is playing. I knew right then and there I was going to fall in love with warblers.
Such colorful and beautiful birds like the Blue-winged Warbler above.
And my favorite shot of any kind of warbler including this Prairie Warbler where they are perched in a tree and singing. Soon enough warbler activity lessened some but quickly found a way to fill that void by helping Alan out with his atlasing where we always found a cool bird or two on every trip. ;-)
And then there were the local birds in town like the Graylag Goose at Brierly. I have to admit when I first started birding I would make this a frequent stop and the goose would scare me. As soon as I got out of my car it would run after me making a gesture with his bill as if it were hissing like a cat. I would run back to my car and leave, afraid of that bill of his and what it could do to me. Now I regard it as a friend and am glad it makes the woman across the street happy.
And of course my obsession with gulls like the ones at Target at Lincoln Plaza.
And the more exotic gulls in more exotic locations.
And other exotic birds in other exotic locations like the Black Skimmer above. Another twitch that was successful!
And just when you thought summer birding was boring you were proven wrong by the various shorebirds like the Whimbrel's above.
And the Piping Plover above at Plum Island.
And the many shorebirds at Plymouth Beach!!! Overwhelming but awesome to say the least!
And in between the warblers and the shorebirds, there was July where bird activity seemed scarce so what does one do during that time. Why hike mountains of course, like Mount Monadnock where I got some of the best views of Common Raven's I have ever seen.
But soon enough I found something else to take its place like hawkwatching which is another highlight of the year and something I wasn't sure I would like, but like it I did!! Whether it be Mount Watatic where I saw my first migrating Osprey.
Or Barre Falls watching for Broad-winged Hawks, I was instantly drawn and is the one major thing I am planning to work on next year as a major birding objective of mine.
And then there were the sparrows and fall warblers. People say hawkwatching can be frustrating, but I found this to be more so. The fall warblers all look very similar and the sparrows are just too darn secretive!! I never did get a nice look at a White-crowned Sparrow, but I did see many others like the Savannah Sparrow above.
And now it duck and waterfowl time which has been a great way to end October and start November.
Who knew there were so many ducks out there!! So cool!