Sunday, January 24, 2021

A Need To Accomplish And Organize

I think birders fall get into keeping lists and counting bird species because of an instinctual need to have a sense of purpose and to organize things. I recently tried out a music app that lets you organize your music and make folders for as many kind of music categories that you can think up. I was thinking Spotify could be a dangerous service for a bird lister who also enjoys music.
I had one sighting this weekend which was particularly exciting for me, a Canvasback.
I rarely get to see this particular species of duck unless I want to travel down to the western shoreline during winter. Seeing one right in my own area was unexpected and it served a purpose. Species number 56 for this year in Middlesex county!

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Why Do They Call It A Red-bellied Woodpecker?

People that aren't specifically into birding sometimes refer to a Red-bellied Woodpecker as a Red-headed Woodpecker which is a  different species. It is understandable because the Red-bellied Woodpecker does have a lot of red on the top of it's head but where is the red on the belly?
Unfortunately, back in the Audubon days they had to shoot the bird if they wanted a close-up look at them. Otherwise, they probably would have came up with a different name. See that little splash of blush color on the underside? Apparently, that is supposed to be the red belly!

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Peripheral Birding

I think that one way we spoil the magic of bird-watching is by trying too hard. Instead of going out in the woods seeking birds like a bounty hunter it sometimes works better not to look for them at all. By focusing on things like the beauty of your surroundings.....
or the sound of your footsteps and breathing as you head down abandoned tracks, you can open your mind and view things in expanded dimensions.
In this way, you can detect birds using your peripheral vision and you might even say the peripheral part of your mind.
Then when you turn your head to really look at a particular bird it seems to stand out in full-dimensional living color!