J.B.'s Blog

Bird Club Pamphlet - in the making

I've been working on a map for the pamphlet for the bird club. I like the idea of combining my GIS background with a little bit of graphic arts know-how. I-m no Burt Monroy or Deke McClelland but I like watching them on lynda.com and trying to do what they do. It will be great to get the pamphlet updated. Many thanks to Mary Heubner for pursuing this. Here is the map.

My Breeding Bird Survey Map

I do the Floyd Route every year. It runs from the Savage River Reservoir up the hill, across 495 to Glendale Road and Deep Creek Lake, to the left on Rock Lodge Road, across 219, past the Wisp Resort, out Sang Run and up to the top of Piney Mountain. I often get Pine Siskins, Purple Finches, Canada Warbler, Veery, BT Blues and Greens. This year I got Ceruleans and Blackburnians and a couple of Juncos.

Least Flycatcher

Everybody likes a challenge. One I have taken on is to try and really learn to identify Empidonax Flycathers. I thought that one way to learn them is through photographs (combined with a lot of reading about subtle field marks) so I've been trying to get a few shots of my own.

June Birding - Old Legislative Road

So on June 10th, 2011 I met up with a photographer from Southern Maryland named Dave Brenneman. He was interested in photographing a few Western MD specialties. He had already scored with the coveted Cerulean Warbler by the time we hooked up that Saturday so we decided to have a try for the Golden-winged Warblers at Old Legislative Road.

Cerulean Warbler (by Dave Brenneman).

MD Goshawk Shot

Its slightly old news now but I just had to say something about this since I used to go and help Dave Brinker walk around West Virginia looking for nests. The shooting of a Goshawk in Savage River State Forest is just disgusting.
Baltimore Sun Goshawk Article

MOS Conference 2011

I had the pleasure of leading two field trips at the Maryland Ornithological Society (MOS) conference last weekend. I took a small group around West Shale Road on Saturday. This area isn't in our site guide yet (perhaps I should add it). It is public land near New Germany State Park that has lots of trails nearby and there is a bit of forestry going on in the area (some clearcutting etc.).

Allegany CBC

See the attached Report (in pdf format).

Lots of Dead Birds

There has been a lot of speculation about the large flocks of blackbirds found dead in Arkansas (3-5 thousand birds) and a smaller flock in Louisiana. They were mostly Red-winged Blackbirds. How did they die ? I read a report that the BP oil spill may have been at work here.

Updating eBird

Today I finished a big ongoing project. I finally finished entering all my historic birding data into eBird. I was slightly disappointed that it only put me in 4th place for all time by number of checklists uploaded falling behind Bob Ringler, Stan Arnold, and Bill Hubick (in that order). The species total (340) is short by a full 29 species so I know there is some important data still missing.

Beginnings of the blog

Every blog has to have a 1st blog post. I don't have a lot to say at this point but I have told most of the bird club members that I'll be stepping down as President in March, 2011. I plan to continue to be a part of the club and maintenance of the website and starting this blog is proof. I have some short-term plans for the blog. I got the iPhone in October so there are a few birding apps that deserve some good review. Hopefully I can be persistent with this and get a post or two out every month (or more).

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