We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I was a bit of a nerdy, introverted kid, with a strong naturalist, conservationist, and hunting bent which has continued into my so-called adulthood.
I owe my Mom (and my Dad) gratitude for introducing me to these interesting things. They are both curious people who do not like to not know about things around them, in whatever depth they are able to pursue.
The energetic curiosity of parents, as of teachers, must surely be a good inspiration for growing rugrats. Thanks, Mom and Dad.
While an expert in nothing, I have learned enough over the years to see and understand more of what's going on outdoors than the average bear. As our readers know, I am interested in the geology, the geography, the wildlife, the plants, the seas, and habitats in general.
I have been birding since I was around 10, when I started with weekend groups from the local Audubon Society, but I remain a novice. Female warblers can drive me nuts, and Fall warblers - forget about it.
Birding can be challenging, physically like hiking and mentally like Organic Chemistry: birds have seasonal plumages, and many vary during their first couple of years of life. Like hunting or fishing, it provides a mission for one's expeditions to the Great Outdoors. I am not one of those obsessives who pursue a Life List: I just like to see what is around in whatever corner of Creation I happen to find myself.
Even when hunting, I tend to have my binoculars with me.
Using data from 2006, a new report, "Wildlife Watching in the United States," found that expenditures for watching birds and other wildlife were equivalent to the revenues generated from all spectator sports, including football, baseball and NASCAR; amusement parks and arcades; nonhotel casinos; bowling centers; and skiing facilities -- combined.
Photo is a tough diagnosis for amateurs, especially when among flocks of Herring Gulls. Sometimes seen on the coast in the Northeast in winter: Glaucous Gull. A big, tough denizen of the high Arctic.
I object. Keeping a life list is not obsessive. (It can't be; I do it. ;-) ) "Obsessive" should be reserved for the people who:
keep lists for different states keep lists for every year keep lists for a specific state in a specific year keep lists for individual locations
* will drive four or five hours to see a vagrant bird which is a lifer for them
Bird Dog, have you ever been on a pelagic birding trip?
I really like your writing and especially your recent posts about birds and birding. At Birds & Beans Coffee we work really hard to help the conservation of migratory songbirds. If you are ever interested in learning more about the benefits of Shade Grown Coffee please visit us at birdsandbeans.com or send us an email. best B&B