Saturday, September 15, 2012

The early worm gets the bird

John wanted to set the alarm for 7:30. The wonderful gentleman, who had posted on Ebird about the Red-Crowned Parrot site near Pace High School in Brownsville, had started at 7:30 AM so John moved the alarm to 7:00. We got off without breakfast and got to the site at 7:35. There were parrots all over the place. 647 John got good pictures and views. THEN we had breakfast. By 8:10 the parrots had dispersed from the park. Thus the early worm/bird reference.

If I haven't mentioned this before, we bring along bowls, spoons and boxes of cereals. On the road each day, we buy a pint of milk, cokes and ice. The next morning, we are set for breakfast. As all birders know, the best birding is in the early morning, no time for a Denny's breakfast.

The Red-Crowned Parrot was John's 647th bird for his ABA big year list. It was also his 700th bird for his ABA life list. The American Birding Association defines its area as the mainland north of Mexico, including continental shelf. So all of mainland US, Canada and Alaska, but not Hawaii, are included. Some birds, John has seen in other countries, but to include them in the ABA life list, he has to see them in the ABA area too. At the beginning for this big year quest, John's ABA life list was 639. He saw all those birds in 55 years of birding. In 9 months, he has added 61 birds to his ABA life list.

Even though he has little chance of even reaching 700 birds for his ABA big year list, John has had a great amount of fun and has learned a heck of a lot about birds and birding.

I know all these references to listings are confusing. Listing does not make it so. I like to bird and don't list at all.

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