Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Big Day

Mistah's currently reading a book called Kingbird Highway* about a birder and his Big Year.

*you've got to admit, that's a great title.

Kenn Kaufman, in the 1970s, is trying to break the record for a Big Year in the United States, which means he has to spot (or, apparently, only hear) more than 600 birds. And there's another guy out there trying to break the same record at the same time, which must drive ol' Kenn crazy. It sure would me.

Birders, apparently, in order to have a Big Year, must have Big Days, when they log hundreds of birds in one day, to break that elusive record.

Obviously, all those hundred of birds in One Big Day aren't all newly-logged birds, but one has got to get out there and walk the entire coast of Texas every once in a while. Because the longer you've been doing it, the harder it is to log a new bird.

Mistah gave us this background at a party last week. He said that earlier that day he had wanted to get some exercise, so in the spirit of the Kingbird Highway and its Big Year and Big Day, he decided to take a Big Walk.

He logged seven birds.

Okay, okay, maybe it wasn't the Biggest Day in the history of the Universe, but if you know Mistah, you know that although it was a Big Walk, it probably wasn't a long walk . . .

And what a great concept -- you go out into the world for a walk, you get a little exercise, you get a little sun, your body makes a little Vitamin D, and you get to see some birdies.

I was in.

Mistah and I took a walk at Ocean Beach on Sunday. A Big Day? Oh it was Big.

Canada Geese*

*That's what they're called, you know. Mistah once wrote that in a newspaper story, and his editor changed it to Canadian Geese, which is vastly incorrect. So now we call them Canadian Goosies.

Regal birdies, those Canadian Geesies.

They were everywhere that day, flying about . . .

. . . if our goal was to have a Big Day of Canadian Goosie-Birds, well, Kenn Kaufman would have nothing on us.

I call this one, Up, Down, Out.

And this is my favorite.

Ocean Beach was, as usual, espectacular.

Our northern Goosie-Pals were not our only Feathered Friends on Sunday. Oh, no, this was our Big Day! We also saw duckies:

Can't you just hear them waddle?

. . . and this guy. Out in the water. The well-known Water Bird.

Ah, OB.

Well, that's not so bad. That's kind of a Big Day. Duckies and Goosies and Water Birdies. Plus Swannies and Sea Gulls. And the juvenile hawk we saw on our way to the beach. Oh, a Big, Big Day.

And then we went home . . .

. . . and in the very tippity-tops of our gigantic fir trees, saw House Finches.

Well, maybe House Finches. Maybe not. But there they were, back from their winter travels, sitting right in our trees.

Well, hellooooooo! Are you looking for your bride?

There she is!

Big Day.


Pat said...

It so reminds me of the Canada (Walt went crazy when people called them Canadian) on our beautiful Lake Cayuga.
Nice blog, Ellie

Ellen said...

Love all your blogs, and love that you find so many things to write about....and love the pictures from Mistah. Now, let's get technical, aren't they gullies and finchies?

Me, You, or Ellie said...

Lovely, lovely, lovely indeed! Way to bring that book to life. Big day, indeed -- Mistah sure can come up with some excellent field trips.

Up, Down, Out. is glorious!


Me, You, or Ellie said...

What, no terns?

Lovely day, winter beaches are da bomb, coast to coast.