Last week, I found out that someone I work with is also a birder! We have similar political and social beliefs and often discuss the ongoing trainwreck in Iraq and D.C., and now we can even talk birds! He's far more experienced than I am, so it'll be neat to try to learn from him.
I was out on the company walking trail and found him watching a brown creeper--a lifer for me! I'm really racking up the lifers this spring, my first spring as a "real" birder. Creepers are so tiny! I really don't know if I would've noticed it if my friend hadn't pointed it out; we also saw some white-breasted nuthatches (which I'd hope-ID'd as red-breasted, but my friend disavowed me of that notion, as the habitat was all wrong) and a bluebird, which he ID'd by its call. Impressive, young Skywalker! It was really neat to have a little birding experience at work, especially one I was able to share with a friend.
I'll have to take my camera to work with me (or go up on a weekend) and see if I can't get a good photo of a brown creeper. We saw two of them that day, and I noted their well-documented habit of girdling each tree until they reached a certain point, then they'd fly to the bottom of the next tree over and start their search for food again.
I've decided I'm going to try to collect maybe 2-3 good photos of each species of bird I've seen; some may be tough (like I probably won't see another road runner unless I go back to the Southwest), but I figure I've got to focus my efforts and try to get some documentation to go along with my life list. I'll probably never stop taking pictures of song sparrows or cardinals, which I love to distraction, but I could at least try to add to the variety of my collection by documenting some other species.
Ah, the trials and triumphs of a beginning birder.