Friday, December 9, 2011

Falling Away

LeConte's Sparrow. In a patch of grass smaller than my dorm room. In downtown Chicago.

The sudden remembrance that I am (or, rather, was) the owner of this blog came as a surprise to me this evening; it had been several weeks since I had even thought about this outlet of boasting and bemoaning. Today being the last day of classes of the semester, I deemed it necessary to squeeze the traditional post complaining about the death of my birding life.

My acquisition of a car this year promised increased birding opportunities; if anything, I have birded less this semester than any previously. At times, an entire week would pass without even one lifting of the binoculars to the eyes, or even off their customary bedpost.

Still, the semester wasn't an entire waste. Problematic holes in my campus list, included Connecticut Warbler, Vesper Sparrow, Great Egret (!), Tundra Swan, Barred Owl, and Herring Gull (!!), lost the distinction of being holes. Occasional forays to the Caledonia Sewage Ponds between study sessions yielded Long-billed Dowitchers and Cackling Geese. I finally (i.e., finally) saw my first jaeger in Michigan, a Parasitic. On one fateful morning, a Brown Creeper landed on my jeans and creeped over my crotch. Sage Thrasher and LeConte's Sparrow in Chicago nearly convinced me that this wasteland is actually a fun place to bird.

Oh, and I got intimate with a Peregrine. Really intimate. Like, the four-foot sort of intimate.

I would bore you with more chronicles of this birdless fall, but it's time to get to bed; I'm going birding tomorrow.

1 comment:

Zachary DeBruine said...

Hey Neil, nice to see you on again--and you got a car! I wouldn't belittle 419 checklists in Kent county alone and another 157 in Michigan--that means that your binoculars were being used roughly 2.7 times per day even during school (excluding the week of finals).