10,000 Birds

Birding crème de la crème: Africa – Ngorongoro Crater to Queen Elizabeth II National Park

10,000 Birds

This is the second post in the Birding crème de la crème series (the first, focused on southern Asia, is here ). This time we travel to Africa, or to narrow it further, to the Afrotropical region (since the north of the continent avifaunally belongs to the Palearctic).

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Last CBC of the Decade

10,000 Birds

The very last Sunday of the decade heralded our final CBC – with group sizes limited to five persons. For the fifth year in a row, I was assigned the prolific and well-known Aripo Livestock Station at the foothills of Trinidad’s Northern Range.

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7 Resolutions for Birding Costa Rica in 2021

10,000 Birds

2020, one of the more memorable and infamous tear years of our lives, is finally done. It doesn’t mean that various issues and problems have disappeared, but at least a new calendar year is a fine excuse for renewal.

Birding Serbia in the 2020

10,000 Birds

As the year is closing, I am looking back to realise, despite it being such an awful year, it’s far from the worst I had, it doesn’t even come close (it’s the mileage that’s killing me, I guess).

2020 216

Farewell to 2020 – Marin Brewing Company: Albion Amber Ale

10,000 Birds

As uncertain as the future may be, I’m sure we’re all ready to bid farewell to the year 2020.

2020 211

Birding without a phone

10,000 Birds

If you are old enough, you will remember birding without a phone? Not too long ago, it was the norm. Then I started to carry a phone just in case my car stopped or something. Later I carried it because of a stash of bird songs I compiled in it.

2020 241

Pat’s Costa Rica Bird List, 2021

10,000 Birds

2021 is already well underway, are you birding? I hope so because watching a flock of redpolls bound through wintery airs that echo with the calls of crows is nature connection magic. Tracking the soaring of a Bateleur in hot African skies is a lifetime gift.

What Was Your First Bird of 2021?

10,000 Birds

It’s 2021! What was your first bird of the year? Hopefully it will start off a year with vaccines for all and a beginning of a return to normalcy. This year, 2021, has to be better than the dumpster fire that was 2020, right? Happy New Year to you from the 10,000 Birds crew!

“The Pines of Florence”: Castellare di Castellina Chianti Classico (2018)

10,000 Birds

One of the nice things about winter finch irruptions is that they usually take place across two calendar years, allowing ardent listers to tick the very same species in January for their new year lists as they saw in the final weeks of the previous year.

2018 178

A Slacker’s Guide to Bird Photography (Part One)

10,000 Birds

It always surprises me when people compliment my photographs. As I have often commented on this site, I started taking photos of birds only to improve the accuracy of my IDs. And while I put more effort into taking decent photos than I used to, I still don’t do the hard stuff.

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Fall Migration in Costa Rica- Six Things I Have Learned

10,000 Birds

For the first 30 something years of my life, fall migration was when the warblers “sipped”, “chipped” and “seeped” in the tired, late summer leaves.

Hornbills of Yunnan

10,000 Birds

China is not that well-known for its hornbills, but in Yunnan province, on the border to Myanmar, some species can be found.

2020 238

Gray Hawk from the House

10,000 Birds

Every place has its hawk. At least it seems that way. A generalist raptor that can keep on living in a human dominated landscape. These are the neighborhood raptors that make do, even thrive, by preying on the wildlife of an urban landscape.

2020 274

CBC Shenanigans

10,000 Birds

As I gather the relevant documentation for our upcoming CBC this Sunday I caught myself daydreaming of CBCs past. The very first CBC I attended was eight whole years ago – but I remember it quite vividly.

2020 198

Mexico Beat BBOTY

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It was the best of years, it was the worst of years… Oh, who am I kidding? 2020 was the worst of years, through and through. And there were moments during the year when I thought birding was a lost cause.

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Birding Carska Bara Reserve in December Fog

10,000 Birds

I don’t know what those so-called meteorologists are doing: they all claim a moderately cold morning, but do not say a word about the fog! Yet, tree branches are covered in hoar frost and the fog is so thick one could cut it with a machete!

2020 198

Best Bird of the Weekend (First of 2021)

10,000 Birds

So many different factors contribute to the quality and quantity of a birding adventure that one would be hard-pressed to predict the very best time to watch birds in a particular area beyond a vague three or four week window.

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa, 5th edition

10,000 Birds

For several years I lived and birded in the south of Africa , and still have my battered second edition (1997) of the Sasol Birds of Southern Africa, the most trusted local field guide.

2020 219

Best Bird of the Weekend (Second of January 2021)

10,000 Birds

During the second weekend of the year, even common birds still carry their luster. Enjoy that feeling while you can, because we are still months away from migration! While I sought rarities on the western edge of Rochester this weekend, I came up with entirely common species.

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Forest Bathing

10,000 Birds

I’m writing this post primarily because I am currently dreaming of the subject. Having been penned in our house for the last month (and more), the last time we have been out birding seems like a distant memory.

2020 215

Around the World For Penguins: A Penguin Fan’s Book Review

10,000 Birds

Penguins! Penguins here! <pause> <pause> Do I have your attention now? There are few bird names that will elicit great big smiles and Penguin is one of them.

2020 229

Of Tree I Sing

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As anyone who knows quality photography can tell, I am not the sort of birder who tends to stay in one place for long. There are no photographic hides or tripods for me.

2020 178

Bodegas Navarro Lopez Laguna de la Nava Gran Reserva (2013)

10,000 Birds

I’m moving house at the end of this month, which provided a good opportunity for me to dig around my modest wine cellar – my basement, that is – for any older bottles of aging wine that might be ripe for enjoyment. I figure the less I have to pack, the better.

2013 146

When Birds Are Near: Dispatches From Contemporary Writers

10,000 Birds

There are owls in New York City. Big owls: Barred Owls on Riverside Drive and down the path from Harlem Meer, a Great Horned Owl in Central Park’s Ramble.

2020 207

Birding Xishuangbanna, Yunnan, China

10,000 Birds

Menglun in Xishuangbanna is less than 50 km away from the Chinese border to Laos and Myanmar, and it has a big botanical garden.

2020 184

The ABA Area and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

10,000 Birds

The third anniversary of Hurricane Maria barreling its way through Puerto Rico was a few weeks ago. In the aftermath of Maria, I had wondered why both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands were not part of the ABA Area. After all, both are U.S. territories and their residents are U.S. citizens.

2020 236

Costa Rica Opens! What About the Birding?

10,000 Birds

Back in March, back when the world realized that a pandemic was happening and that it was spreading with tenacious unconscious determination, Costa Rica closed its borders.

Birding Nanhui, Shanghai in September

10,000 Birds

You may remember – though I am pretty sure you do not, because who would – that my second-to-last blog post ended on a slightly disappointed note.

2020 240

Peeps and Plovers on Cuitzeo Beaches

10,000 Birds

In late July, I travelled a half hour north of Morelia to Lake Cuitzeo (kweet-SAY-oh) to see if our two inevitable first migratory species from up north, Baird’s Sandpiper and Wilson’s Phalarope, had begun arriving.

2020 247

The Things We Do For Birds

10,000 Birds

Late Sunday afternoon I was relaxing at home trying to recover from my early awakening due to having turned back the clock one hour for daylight saving time. Well, that and over imbibing on Halloween candy, if I’m being honest.

2020 219

The Merlin Out Back

10,000 Birds

I live in the Central Valley, the most populated part of Costa Rica. For most of its history, this intermontane valley was a melange of wetlands and moist forest watered by rains that drench the adjacent mountains.

2020 207

Best Bird of the Weekend (Third of October 2020)

10,000 Birds

Any time of year that features skies filled with birds pretty much all day demands attention pretty much all day. If your neck is sore from being on a swivel this weekend, may I suggest swiveling with your hips to get through the rest of the month?

2020 227

Where Are You Birding This Final Weekend of October 2020?

10,000 Birds

In a normal year, we’d enter the final weekend of October thinking of trivialities like tricks, treats, and maybe costume parties. Instead, a cloud of dread hangs over most of the world. Be strong!

2020 219

Bitternsweet Moments

10,000 Birds

I promise this will be the last article (for a while at least) on this wetland that’s so close to where I live. Truth is, we’ve been getting so many migrants passing through that there hasn’t been much of a need to bird elsewhere.

2020 241

Collaborative list December 2020 and year’s round up.

10,000 Birds

The overwhelming sentiment in Christmas cards this year is that 2021 cannot come fast enough. Lock downs and restrictions have curbed our birding, so if you can summon any blessings to mind, count them instead.

2020 165

What Flies Over Costa Rica in the Night?

10,000 Birds

On the northern birding calendar, October is a time for sparrows, cool weather, and tired fall leaves. It’s when Orange-crowned Warblers share the Goldenrod with lisping and chirping sparrows, when hardy Yellow-rumped Warblers dominate the Parulid scene.

Birding Beljarica in August

10,000 Birds

Last month, I birded my favourite local patch, Beljarica – the best eBird hotspot in Belgrade city and the 3rd best in Serbia – four times.

2020 242

A Reliable Birding Proverb

10,000 Birds

“Sit under a fruiting tree and birding shall be fruitful.” ” After spending the last couple months chasing migratory shorebirds, I was aching for some forest birding.

2020 232

Kenyan LBJ’s (The Sequel)!

10,000 Birds

In my last piece dedicated to the tiny brown blobs we often ignore, I mentioned the trials and tribulations involved in whittling the selection down to suit a single post. It was only during the preparation of that post I truly realized how many images I had of these little brown birds!

2020 209

A Japanese in China

10,000 Birds

The Avibase China birdlist counts 7 species of minivets for China – one of which is the Ashy Minivet.

2020 199

Sniping: The Final Frontier?

10,000 Birds

For those of us who have been bestowed with the good fortune of seeing a snipe, we understand the gravity of the blessing. Any snipe is a good snipe, they say. Out of the approximately 26 species of snipes worldwide, two have been recorded on Trinidad. Only one has been seen on Tobago.

2020 224

The Birds are All Right

10,000 Birds

It was the month of March, 2017, when I went to Lake Cuitzeo to check up on our migratory waterfowl and shorebirds one last time before they travelled north to breed. But that time, I was shocked to find that about half the birds I had expected were missing — along with half the lake.

2020 181

One Blustery Morning on a Desert Island

10,000 Birds

As birders, we’re all well aware of our brain whipping our body awake at some ungodly hour, no matter how tightly wrapped in the sheets we may be. Last year, I was on transit via Curaçao – twice on a single round trip.

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