Oh to be in Texas admiring the celebrity bird du jour, an incredibly unexpected Amazon Kingfisher! Amazing encounters occur when amazing birders visit amazing places, but serendipitous sightings increase exponentially when so many amazing birders gather for an amazing birding festival. Congratulations to our buddy Jeff Bouton for bringing unexpected joy and a new ABA tick to so many happy birders and congrats as well to our friends at the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival, one of the most enjoyable birding festivals anywhere. Let’s also extend congratulations to those of you who made the wise decision to visit the RGVBF this year… did you see the kingfisher?
Corey’s Best Bird of the Weekend was a self-found Cackling Goose at Baisley Pond Park in Queens. Little geese are awesome, at least when you find them. I visited Hamlin Beach in search of an errant Ross’s Goose mixed in with Canadas but found only Snow Geese. I also encountered lots of Snow Buntings. Can snow be far behind?
How about you? What was your best bird of the weekend? Tell us in the comments section about the rarest, loveliest, or most fascinating bird you observed. If you’ve blogged about your weekend experience, you should include a link in your comment.
It was common crane migration yesterday here in Germany and thousands flew right over our heads on their way to France. Awesome and quite noisy.
But the best bird this weekend was the same as every other day for the past 3 weeks – the European Robin that sings beautifully while I have breakfast.
Here in South Carolina, a group from the Charleston Natural History Society (aka Charleston Audubon) birded the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge. Our best bird of the day was a duck species that most of us had not seen in a couple of years. We also saw some exciting interaction between two raptor species. You can read about it in my blog post, Pluff Mud Perspectives: November Birding: Charleston Natural History Society Visits the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge.
A Thayer’s Gull, a Long-eared and two Northern Saw-whet owls in my local patch in downtown ottawa, ontario.
Wasn’t able to break away from weekend obligations to peep at the Townsend’s Solitaire that’s been camping out in northern Illinois. 🙁
So my best bird will have to be the Cooper’s Hawk I saw chasing the pigeons last week as I made my way to my local El station in Chicago. The things you notice if you just pay attention!
A raft of about 80 Surf Scoters right beside the ferry dock on my way to Seattle. I’d never seen so many together, and it was wonderful seeing them so close through my binoculars.
A very late Cattle Egret for Central Indiana. I found it while doing a loop of the retention ponds in the Greenwood area.
First Golden-crowned kinglet at the NC Botanical garden nature trails! I’ve seen one bird banding but never in the “wild.” So pretty.
Wish I could have been at the festival just to share that experience with so many other birders. Instead, on Sunday, I went to middle elevation habitats and the edge of lowland rainforest near La Selva, Costa Rica in search of more bird recordings and photos for a Costa Rica birding app I helped develop. Terrible lighting for photos but a wonderful bird filled day, several recordings made, and best bird of the day- 7 Great Green Macaws in flight.
Yes, I was there! Here is my photo of the Amazon Kingfisher: http://www.flickr.com/photos/queensgirl/10770342275/
It was a fun twitch, especially when the bird flew across the highway and the police held up traffic so we could run across and track it. Imagine that, police helping birders instead of giving out tickets!
But, I gotta say, my favorite bird of the extended weekend was the Rose-throated Becard I saw post-festival at Santa Ana NWR: http://www.flickr.com/photos/queensgirl/10812231245/. I’ve been wanting to see this bird in the U.S. ever since I waited in vain for it for hours in Arizona in 2005.
If I could cheat just a little bit (the weekend begins on Friday, right?) not one but two Northern Goshawks. First a first year bird, then an adult. First time away from a hawk watch I have had more than one in a day.