Friday, January 15, 2010

Top 10 Birds of 2009

And some bad pictures to go with them:

#1- Snowy Owl- A really really really cool bird. I got a better look than the photo would suggest. A great way to end a 6-lifer day at Jones Beach.

#2- Painted Bunting- Green back, Indigo head, Scarlet chest. Nothing else needs to be said. Seen in February in Corkscrew Swamp, FL.

#3- White-winged Crossbill- A rare winter finch with a weird bill that came south in large numbers in the winter. The irruption was the largest in a while. I didn't get any photos, but I did see the individuals in the photo:

#4- Ruff- The rarest bird I saw all year, one was found by Tom Burke at my favorite local birding spot, the Marshlands Conservancy. It was a male in breeding plumage:

#5- Blackburnian Warbler- A stunning bird at eye level was the highlight of a 5 lifer trip to Central Park.

#6- Swallow-tailed Kite- Another really cool bird, my favorite raptor and possibly my favorite overall bird. A pair flew over Corkscrew Swamp in February.

#7-Parasitic Jaeger- A really awesome bird. Great looks a Race Point, Provincetown, in August.

#8- Cerulean Warbler- A severely declining bird, it was the target and highlight of a trip to Doodletown. Plus, it's cerulean.

#9-Barred Owl- I saw two this year. The first, in Corkscrew Swamp in Florida, was asleep. The photo of it is one post down. On the other hand, One flushed during the Greenwich CBC, giving great looks.

#10- Prothonotary Warbler- I found one at Greenwich Audubon in May. In addition to being a spectacular bird, it was somewhat rare for the area, my first self-found semi-rarity.

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