Monday, February 22, 2010


I cannot properly describe the nasty, hollow thing in my gut right now, although it most closely resembles fear, dread.

Please read this brief article.

I urge everyone who reads this to speak up for our state parks, whether you live in NY state or not. I am a registered voter in Massachusetts, but I will very likely remain in the Finger Lakes region after graduation, and begin to make my life here. I spend a great deal of time in government-owned parks--from town and county-managed property to the magnificent Letchworth State Park, and the thought of a single one closing, or diminishing in size, makes me shudder in horror.

NY isn't the only state considering or already planning to close state parks, as the article mentions. Even if your home state isn't considering making changes to its park system, I plead with you to write to your elected officials and to let them know how precious the parks are to you.

Our species continues to rape the natural world, let's face it. There are only tiny pockets that remain relatively unmolested. For the flora and fauna who dwell in these places, for future generations, and for yourself-- speak up!

Click here to email Gov. Paterson

In addition to what I have already asked of you, I ask one more favor: pass the word along. The birding community, I expect, will have a strong voice in this matter.

Take nothing but pictures (and maybe the trash of jerks who came before you), leave nothing but footprints.

Friday, February 19, 2010

New Social Networking Site for Birders

Heard of yet? It's a social networking site for birders! NRDC and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology partnered up to create it--check it out :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

No, I'm not dead...just busy

No posts in November, a single post in December, nothing January, and now what is likely to be February's only post (although hopefully not). I have been insanely busy with schoolwork, and my birding--in terms of both the activity itself and networking with other birders--has suffered quite a bit.

I haven't seen a single Redhead or Canvasback all winter. That reflects on the amount of time I've had to go birding, not their presence, or rather, lack of presence. And apparently there are King Eiders in Buffalo, swimming around while I'm stuck doing a CS lab.....grrrr.....

Today as I got got back from class and was walking into my apartment I heard a bird singing, and after going inside to get my camera and snapping its pic, IDed it as a male House Finch. Memories of them singing from the trees in my backyard last Spring crept back into my mind, and I did my best to chisel the song a little bit more into my memory. I'm rubbish with IDing birds by voice and song, haven't had the time to work with my Birding by Ear CDs! Ahhh!

My feeders have been down all winter since the birds were waking my roommate up every morning, so I'm even more birding-starved. I'm sure a number of people can sympathize with me on this: I'm so much grouchier when I don't get to go birding at least 2 times a week!! I'm sure the frequency will vary, maybe some of you get grouchy if you can't bird everyday, or only if you can't bird 3 times a month, I dunno.

But it's okay, because I'm going to bird my brains out in the Spring, and it's going to be AMAZING. I've got it all worked out, you see. I did my best to sign up for evening classes for Spring quarter. That gives me the mornings and at least the beginnings of the afternoons to spend doing bird-related things: dawn to 6 hours after dawn I can be at the banding station/s, and then it's off to the hawkwatch platform! Hours upon hours of birding.....*bad imitation of Homer Simpson drooling*

I've been meaning to post for so long, and I have tons of homework to do for Chemistry, plus studying for Data Analysis (yay?), so I realize that this post is very all-over-the-place and thrown together, little or no proofreading, but blogging is informal, so why am I worrying about it?

The only two other little birding events I can think of were squeezed into my busy schedule:
  • driving back to Rochester after spending a weekend in Utica, I saw 3 Bald Eagles at Montezuma NWR, almost drove my car off the road I was so excited (they were flying pretty low at first). Quick detour to the park with my trusty new scope and my camera, and I got some pics. Nothing worth posting, they were too far off, but I got some nice looks nonetheless. Although I do like to get pictures, as long as I can see them with my own eyes, hear them with my own eyes, I can't really complain.
  • Walking back to my car after class, I heard a white-breasted nuthatch nearby. Not sure if I've seen one on campus before then, at least not in among the buildings (there's a patch of woods on campus, saw a Pileated there once). I admired him for a few minutes, pointed him out to a random stranger (who I assumed would find it odd that I was standing there looking up at a tree with a goofy smile on my face)
aaaaannd that's about it, although in the first week of January I did drag my brother out to Parker River in the bitter cold, but I'll have to post about that another time.

Finals week next week, perhaps I'll have more time to post, I need to tell you all about how I'm probably going to New Zealand this summer!! :O

Take nothing but pictures (and maybe the trash of jerks who came before you), leave nothing but footprints.