2007 was a great year for birding for me, much improved by two semesters worth of classes and field trips with Joe Morlan’s excellent ornithology series at CCSF. In total I saw 192 species, a major increase over the 120 I saw in 2006.
The following were life birds for me in 2007:
Bewick’s Wren, Black Scoter, Black-capped Chickadee, Black-throated Gray Warbler, Blackpoll Warbler, Brant, Cackling Goose, California Condor, Cassin’s Vireo, Cattle Egret, Common Tern, Eurasian Collared-Dove, Green Heron, Hermit Thrush, Hermit Warbler, Herring Gull, Horned Puffin, House Wren, Nashville Warbler, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Orange-crowned Warbler, Pacific Loon, Pectoral Sandpiper, Pine Grosbeak, Purple Finch, Pygmy Nuthatch, Red-throated Loon, Redhead, Rufous Hummingbird, Short-eared Owl, Snowy Plover, Spotted Sandpiper, Swainson’s Hawk, Tricolored Blackbird, Vaux’s Swift, Warbling Vireo, Western Kingbird, White-breasted Nuthatch, White-throated Swift, Williamson’s Sapsucker, Wilson’s Snipe, Wilson’s Warbler, Wrentit, and Yellow Warbler
Yep, that’s 44 lifers in 2007! It helps, of course, that 2007 saw me birding much more often, and with much more experienced birders, and that my attention turned from the BOBs (Big, Obvious Birds, eg. Red-tailed Hawks and such) to the SBBs (Small, Brown Birds), so I saw many lifers that are common bush birds in the area.
Sarah & I are planning a 3-week trip to Patagonia and Buenos Aires in March/April of 2008, so 2008 should be a banner year for birding as well, since virtually every bird in the region will be a lifer – I can’t wait!
Here are some of my favorite bird photographs that I took in 2007:
Brandt’s Cormorants in breeding display
Pied-billed Grebe and chicks
Pre-juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron
Juvenile American Robin
American Avocet chick
And finally, a bird of a different sort, “captured” in 2007:
My new raven tattoo – not quite finished, but very close!