Friday, December 31, 2010
The game is afoot!
My plans for the new year are nothing unusual. I will have the traditional Pennsylvania New Year’s dinner of pork, sauerkraut and mashed potatoes. I will bird as much as I can on both January 1 and 2. The start of the new year means the start of a new bird list, and I’m determined to get my 2011 county list off to a good start.
For much of 2010, I was the #1 birder in York County, according to Cornell Lab’s e-bird, but limited birding opportunities, especially in the fall, dropped me well behind the two who are now ahead of me. I am determined to regain my #1 spot, though competing against a retiree and footloose young man will not be easy. So I want to get 2011 off on the right foot with as much birding as I can fit in over the upcoming holiday weekend. The warmer weather should help my cause, though rain on Saturday won’t.
I have a nice advantage with woodland birds, since I live in a forest, but shorebirds and waterbirds are my downfall, since that means I have to somehow find time to drive to the river or a large lake to add them to my list. And I don’t seem to be able to do that more than a few times a year. But this new year I will start off with trips to the river and a lake or two, looking for open water and seeing what I can find.
I will never have the means to even attempt a U.S. “big year,” and even a Pennsylvania big year must wait until I can retire. So until then, I will have to content myself with regaining my county crown. The race is on!