For the past I-can't-even-remember-how-many-years, I have spent at least part of my New Year's Day birding and starting my new year bird list. 2007 was, fortunately, no exception.
Part of the reason I enjoy New Year's Day birding so much is that I get to start a new list. For a few minutes at least, even the lowly starling is a "new" bird. After you've been a birder as long as I have, seeing new birds is a rare occurrence, especially when constant travel to new places isn't an option. So we birders find our own ways of making the old seem new, and one of my ways is starting a new birding list each year. A new year list also allows us to compare our lists from year to year and see the differences.
January birding, as a rule, isn't particularly exciting, but it does offer the chance to find all the resident birds in my area before migration starts. Migration seasons are always the best chance I have to see uncommon species. When I've already seen all the local birds, I can concentrate then in looking for the unusual.
So here's my list for 2007, so far, in order of appearance:
Eastern bluebird--not always an easy one to find on January 1, but the warm weather here helped.
Feral Chicken--I just wanted to see if you were still awake.