September, when passerine migration in the northern hemisphere goes into full swing, when listers try desperately to pick up the migrants they missed on their way north on their way south, and when cool nights means one has to put blankets back on the bed, has been a marvelous month for 10,000 Birds. Not only did we have our third best month ever in terms of visitors and page views, but we reached our goal of fully funding the Small African Fellowship for Conservation! Other highlights of the month included the Butcher Birders, the brand-spanking new 10,000 Birds birding competition team, surviving the Montezuma Muckrace while raising $223.50 towards conserving the Montezuma Wetlands Complex, Charlie and Corey tracking down a west coast wood-warbler in Central Park, and giving away two copies of the new Peterson Guide, courtesy of Houghton Mifflin. And while all that was great those examples barely scratch the surface of September on 10,000 Birds.
Charlie started the month off with an odd Cattle Egret in Nigeria, the first of many birds from Africa that he featured in September. I bet we all wish we had a chance to get views of an Oriole Warbler, a Senegal Coucal, an Ethiopian Swallow, a Southern Masked Weaver, a non-breeding Ruff, a Southern Black Korhaan, or a White-throated Swallow. Of course, there were some good birds to be seen in New York as well, like Sandhill Cranes, a Magnificent Frigatebird, a moulting Brown-headed Cowbird, a Great Blue Heron, and a Wild Turkey. Charlie had Ovenbird dreams in England (after seeing one in Chicago) and Corey provided the identities to two diabolical confusing fall warblers.
But pictures of birds isn’t all 10,000 Birds provided in September. Mike wondered about Hedonic Adaptation and Birding and Corey wondered if he was being hedonic enough. Mike also wrote about why birders weren’t getting credit for habitat conservation on National Hunting and Fishing Day, what to do once one joins Facebook, and ran two concurrent contests for the new Peterson Field Guide (the results led to 18 Statements About Roger Tory Peterson). Corey discussed the vice-presidential candidates’ positions on the environment while Mike shared sad news about Winnie the Whimbrel. Corey also told how (and why) to report a rare bird in New York and shared his longing for some birds he rarely sees anymore. And, of course, Mike let everyone know why they should join him at the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival.
We at 10,000 Birds also went out looking for birds all over the place. Charlie had a real cracker of a day in Lagos, Nigeria just before Corey announced that 10,000 Birds would sponsor a team, the Butcher Birders, in the Montezuma Muckrace (the results of which are here and here). Charlie also enjoyed Harmony at Mahem, birding Kuwait, Memel in September, and Chicago’s Magic Hedge. Corey and Charlie together enjoyed a rarity in New York City’s Central Park.
As for the Small African Fellowship for Conservation, well, we had winners in the caption competition that we used to raise funds, And, of course, we announced that we had reached our fundraising goal (and made sure that everyone knows we are being honest about where the money goes). We also made a last-ditch plea for a laptop.
Regular features included Mike asking where everyone was birding on the first, second, third, and last weekends of the month on our Skywatch posts. I and the Bird numbers 83 and 84 were ably introduced by Mike. Corey reviewed Corvus: A Life with Birds, our only review of the month. We participated in Tangled Bank #114, the only blog carnival I am sure we participated in this month (there must have been others but I am already late putting out this month in review so well, I’m sorry…).
A couple of new features were added to the blog this month as well. Jory Langner has starting contributing a field guide-based Evil Avian ID Quiz (and the answer) and Corey started a birding science fiction (Bi-Sci-Fi) series.
Here’s hoping your October is as good as our September!!!