Or perhaps, this post should be called the 5 Bird Day post.
Recovering from my sudden bout of the flu last week, I submitted up final thesis edits on Monday night. Last night I received approval to distribute my thesis to the committee. Which I did and then promptly vomited. (I’m chalking that one up to brushing my teeth too soon after drinking orange juice.) Really sounds like a five star day, doesn’t it?
I also received a second email from my adviser last night inviting select students for an impromptu birding excursion this morning to Garett Mountain Reservation. Two of us took him up on the offer and we met up at 7am. (Well I made it there by 7:10 since I had an unnecessary detour through Paterson.)
Birding with John is an experience typical of birding with most master birders. He does much of his birding by ear. We were joined by one other student, the one who runs the turtle research at the SOC. She’s “more interested in animals” (her phrase) than birds and has only birded the last year or two. She was overwhelmed by the cacophony of sounds and he was underwhelmed by the lack of it. I am getting most of the common birds at this point, if not all their variations, I at least have a number for which I am approaching adept. The really high pitched buzzy, trill stuff does not even register on my radar. It didn’t help that there was lots of landscaping going on!
John had 38 birds on his list. I had 33. I dropped 5 because there were a number I didn’t get eyes/ears on so I figured it wasn’t fair to count – especially if they were FOY or lifers. But we did pick up five lifers, so it was definitely a good morning. New for me were the Warbling Vireo, Wood Thrush, Eastern Towhee, Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Orchard Oriole. So that was a very good day.