Birdspot. On the road. Drawing birds.


Hmmm, look familiar? This is another drawing from Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge. It is an American Bittern, and it resides in the collection of a certain blog commenter… this drawing is ink on paper, and 22 x 30.”

Should you find getting up at 4:30 to catch a 5:30 train to catch a 6:50 bus and riding out to the ostensible ends of the earth for the purpose of walking around in less-than-balmy breezes while staring at small, arguably similar brown birds for four and a half hours to be a pleasant experience, than you are among fine company here. Any sane person would find any one of the above activities a bit more pleasant than, say, a dentist’s appointment.

My bird list from today:

Location: Fort Tilden, Rockaway Penninsula, NY
Observation date: 10/17/08
Notes: w/ Starr Saphir – my new birding buddy and guru
Number of species: 54

Brant (multitudes)
Canada Goose (many)
American Black Duck (1)
Common Loon
Double-crested Cormorant
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Cooper’s Hawk
Peregrine Falcon
Black-bellied Plover
Killdeer (HO)
Sanderling (distant, silvery flock of 30-50)
Ring-billed Gull
Herring Gull (American)
Great Black-backed Gull
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Eastern Phoebe
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee (1)
Brown Creeper (HO)
Carolina Wren
Golden-crowned Kinglet
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Hermit Thrush
American Robin
Gray Catbird
Northern Mockingbird
European Starling
American Pipit (HO)
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Palm Warbler (Yellow)
Common Yellowthroat
Eastern Towhee
Chipping Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Savannah Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Brown-headed Cowbird
House Finch
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(

52 Responses to “oct 17”

  1. My experience is identical to Mark’s but for Episcopal instead of Unitarian and slightly smaller turnout. Cathy’s reminds me of what I knew in Providence as a kid. Twenty-four years ago, when I was in third grade, my parents and I made an election booth out of a refrigerator box and some paint and donated it to Mrs. Neubauer, my teacher. First was a mock-election where we voted for Lila Sapinsley and Ferdinand St. Germain and the other RI notables: good lesson in the workings of the electoral process. Then we held some sort of an election of classroom officers: good lesson in the workings of popularity contests.

    Mark, could you hold forth on icons at some point? I don’t have any religious interest, but I’ve always wanted to know more about iconography, especially the Greek Orthodox variant.

    The randomizer just brought up (impossibly) a Dead Can Dance song I had on my hard drive but hadn’t listened to yet:

    “A wide blue sky is very near
    Soon, soon, soon, soon, soon”

    Utter, certain knowledge that I’m being sung to and consoled about the past eight years.

    We can do this.

  2. Jesse:

    This may seem hard to believe (and it was for me) but the LARGEST AND MOST SIGNIFICANT collection of Russian Icons outside of Russia is in the tiny old factory town of CLINTON, MA (about 20 minutes east of Worcester). I just interviewed the Curator, Kent dur Russell. The story is that the owner of Nypro (Clinton native) had been collecting for decades, and recently founded this state of the art musuem, which already has a show from Russia that will appear no where else in the world. It’s an amazing world class museum in the middle of Clinton (a place I drive through often while birding). They are totally endowed for life and don’t have to worry about fundraising. I have hence learned a LOT about icons, too much to put down here, but most telling is that the artists who create icons have for hundreds of years been called WRITERS, not ARTISTS, because the icon tells the story of the orthodox spiritual relationship of the faithful to the divine. It is also deeply weird and wild to have a museum with objects that are considered deeply sacred to the point of miraculous.
    here’s a link to the musuem:

    CATHERINE: best chigger remedy? Nail polish remover? What? God, chiggers drive me nuts!


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