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January 2010: Retrospecticus

January 29, 2010
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When this post goes up I will likely be hanging out at scenic Raleigh-Durham International, sipping coffee, jamming to the old iPod, waiting for a plane to take me deep into the heart of winter, Massachusetts.  This weekend is Mass Audubon’s annual SuperBowl of Birding, and once again I’m participating with a crack team of bird bloggers seeking the fame and fortune that comes with wrenching the top prize from the cold, if not dead, fingers of these hardy New England birders.  Our team hails from all over the northeast, and me.  I look forward to once again being the furthest from home.  It’s too bad there’s no prize for that.

But just a reminder of who all is involved with the Bloggerhead Kingbirds.  Captaining the team is Christopher from Picus Blog, and along for the ride is Corey of 10,000 Birds, John from A DC Birding Blog, Andrew of Birding Dude, and Mike of the Feather and the Flower, and me of course.  This is a solid team, and while I’m not a betting man, I wouldn’t bet against us.

Incidentally, having a team of bloggers means that you can be a part of the team too, though not an official bird-spotting one.  Two of our members are active tweeters and will probably offer updates throughout the day.  If interested, you can follow John at dendroica and Andrew at birdingdude and I encourage you to do so.  My own Twitter feed is available on the right side of this page.  I might be convinced to update on the road too.

Wish us luck!

But I risk looking too far forward, this post is for looking back.  So how was the first month of January at The Drinking Bird?

I unpacked my 2009 and considered a new listing game to keep me busy for at least the first part of 2010.

– I considered birding with what are likely the densest identification guides to birds you could possibly imagine.

– Considered a way around traveling with expensive optical equipment.

– Offered thoughts on a bizarre incident between fishermen and birders.

– I hope you do the Rusty Blackbird Blitz!

– Had some great experiences in the field, including a new bird for the state and a great trip out east with the Young Naturalist’s Club.

So not bad, huh?  But I’ve got some more news I’ve been sitting on for the last month that I’ve been reticent to share until it’s confirmed.  And well, it just recently got confirmed.  So while this weekend I’m heading to cold Massachusetts, next weekend I’m heading south.  To Guatemala!

Yeah, I know, but thanks to Mike Bergin of 10000 Birds, I’ve been invited to take part in the annual Bird-watching Encounter based, this year, around Lake Atitlan in the southern part of the country.  The week after Eiders and Owls and Gulls, I’ll be taking in Tanagers and Trogons and Horned Guan.  Horned freaking Guan, people!

More to come, but you can bet you can read all about it here, next month, at the Drinking Bird!

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