Tuesday, September 28, 2010

State of the lifelist address

I was just entering my latest observations from the past few days' incidental and purposeful birding, when it occurred to me to see how many birds I've seen this year. This is the state of my lifelist/yearlist thus far:

Birds seen so far in 2010: 190
Lifers seen so far in 2010: 48
Black-bellied Whistling-Duck
Fulvous Whistling-Duck
Mottled Duck
Cinnamon Teal
Neotropic Cormorant
Anhinga
Tricolored Heron
Reddish Egret
White Ibis
Roseate Spoonbill
White-tailed Kite
Harris's Hawk
Gray Hawk
Swainson's Hawk
Common Moorhen
Black-bellied Plover
Wilson's Plover
Willet
Baird's Sandpiper
Long-billed Dowitcher
American Woodcock
Wilson's Phalarope
Inca Dove
Common Ground-Dove
Common Pauraque
Whip-poor-will
Buff-bellied Hummingbird
Ringed Kingfisher
Golden-fronted Woodpecker
Ladder-backed Woodpecker
Vermilion Flycatcher
Ash-throated Flycatcher
Great Kiskadee
Tropical Kingbird
Couch's Kingbird
Green Jay
Cliff Swallow
Carolina Chickadee
Black-crested Titmouse
Long-billed Thrasher
Curve-billed Thrasher
American Pipit
Cape May Warbler
Olive Sparrow
Vesper Sparrow
Dickcissel
Altamira Oriole
Lesser Goldfinch

Not too shabby a list for this year, both total and the number of lifers. Many of the lifers were seen in Texas. Some people go to Costa Rica or Belize; I just go to my parents' house. It's cheaper!

I'm really looking forward to our Maine trip, and I can't believe we're leaving Thursday. So far, the birding plans involve a trip to Plum Island in New Hampshire with AB's parents, as well as some stops along the southern Maine coast. AB's mom sent us some potential places that we might consider:
Webhannet River Marsh, Wells
Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve, Wells
Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, Wells
Vaughns Island Preserve, Kennebunkport (this is only accessible at low tide)
East Point Sanctuary, Biddeford Pool
Prouts Neck Bird Sanctuary, Scarborough (no parking; they suggest you bike there)
Scarborough Marsh, Scarborough

I don't know how much biking or low-tide accessibility we'll have. For that matter, we're only supposed to bird for part of the day and go to the L.L. Bean in Freeport (aka The Mother Ship, per AB) to get me a new coat and some rain pants for Cape May (as well as for work--it's always raining, and I sell door-to-door). So we'll probably hit the most accessible places. Does anyone have suggestions for a must-see place in that area between Portsmouth NH and Freeport ME? Scarborough Marsh apparently has an Audubon center. We may go there.

After all that birding and driving, we'll be going to AB's hometown of Bethel ME, to see all her old haunts and her grandma.

I wonder if we'll see any Atlantic Puffins. Their range appears to be a bit farther north, and I think they're fairly pelagic during non-breeding time.

I'm really excited to see the rocky coastline. We're coming back via I-91 to see the fall foliage, and we're stopping in Greenfield to look around that area (a potential place to go after AB's done with grad school). It's going to be a whirlwind trip, but it'll be fun!

5 comments:

John said...

48 lifers in a year is a pretty good haul... no doubt you'll have more in Maine and Cape May!

I've never been to Maine, so I can't make any recommendations. I'd love to go there (or better yet, Newfoundland) during the alcid breeding season.

Patrick B. said...

I just got back from Maine a few weeks ago. I visited Scar Marsh for a bit. The Audubon Center is tiny there, but has nice people. They also rent canoes to take on the marsh, but they wouldn't let us take Julian because he was too young. It's well-birded, so you'll get lots of info on what's being seen. We didn't have time for much birding, but it was great.

And Portland is right up the road. A great town. Let me know if you're going there and I can recommend a few places to eat.

I wasn't too impressed with Rachel Carson NWR. You probably won't see much there that you don't see elsewhere.

I know you said that you want to see Eiders and LT Duck. Eiders should be easy to find. You can't swing a dead LT duck without hitting a Common Eider. Not sure about King - that's probably harder. Maybe the one in Cape May will still be around when you get there. Have a fun trip!

dguzman said...

John--I'm hoping for some good shorebirds, especially so I can test my learning from The Shorebird Guide. I too would love to go farther north to Newfoundland, but I'll take what I can get!

Patrick--thanks for the endorsement on Scar Marsh. Oh, little Julian! I hope you are all okay and adjusting to life as a family! Thanks for stopping by.

Rabbits' Guy said...

Baloney - there are not 190 kinds of birds on the entire Earth! (Are there?) Amazing!

dguzman said...

Rabbits' Guy, I'm sure there are no more than 200.