Bird watching quickly became a major occupation for us as we explored the many coastal and upland swamps and praries in northwest Washington State. As the chart below indicates, My primary period of bird watching began in earnest in 1975 and continued until about 1978 or so. When I graduated from WWU, Bob and I parted, he to take up a life as a marine biologist and I to continue my MS in Geology at the University of Montana. Without my close friend to share my birding with my activity slowed. Additionally, much of the "easy" work had been done and I found it increasingly difficult to find species that I hadn't previously seen. Trips to Ireland and then to France did bring much happy hunting but the northwest was getting picked over.
I got married in 1980 to a lovely French lady, got a job, moved to Texas, we had a child (in Montana), and then another and another (both in Texas). All this soon put the breaks on my birding activity (although I always kept my eyes open). I was occasionally awarded with a new find. Still, it is a pity and shame that I didn't do more as I lived at this time on the Texas Gulf Coast in Houston.
My work afforded me many opportunities to travel around the globe, but kept me too busy to take advantage of the local birding, with an exception to a visit to Queensland and Australia's outback in 2009. Now I am retired and it is time to make up for some lost time here on the Gulf Coast. Much "Low-hanging Fruit" remains to be had I am sure. All in all I think a 420+ life list is a respectable accomplishment. Thanks much for taking the time to browse this page.
A small gallery of bird pix I have taken, primarily just from the backyard feeder.
Backyard Beauties.. My wild visitors.....(with "garden" list below)
About the graph below, this shows my cumulative number of unique species identified. This does NOT correspond to a set of country/continent life lists as there is overlap, sometimes considerably, between species seen in different regions. I give priority to the country where I first see a bird and that generally, but not always, means America. Cheers!
Note on the photo at upper right: For three years now a little Carolina Wren couple have been nesting in a hanging basket on our back patio. They keep us entertained during meals as they diligently fly back and forth to the nest keeping hungry nestlings fed, such good parents! This early May they hatched three young who left the nest while we were sitting at the patio table. It was quite the scene as maman and papa worked first to entice them out of the nest, no easy task, and then to help lead them to the cover of nearby shrubbery. The babies could fly, kinda sorta, and one managed to land on the BBQ quite the wrong the direction from which maman wished him/her to go. There was much fuss and bother to sort the situation out. The confused little chick, all downy and new, finally managed to fly back to the nest before maman could call it on its way. Its a big scary world out there. We wish them all luck! See you next spring..
My garden list! I have been keeping records for a year and a half whenever I am at home, or evenings when I return from work. No, this is no ebird list with time spent, numbers of birds seen and or etc. It is just my record of species seen in the garden, approaching some 80 different species it is not completely shabby I imagine. For each month I record the number of days each species is seen divided by the cumulative number of days spent observing, results reported as percentage. It becomes obvious who my frequent visitors are, or what months are most diverse. This is an ongoing tally for about two years running, I am not sure when I will declare it complete. One never really knows what drama, what surprises, what fun is waiting.
Friday, 13-Dec-2013 09:13:56 CST
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