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Everything posted by Aaron

  1. That’s what I’m trying to do, I’m sure there will be a hummingbird boom in a few years. More so worried that this will be an excuse for more land to get developed now that it’s practically cleared. Which would probably happen eventually regardless. Have to wait and see I guess 🤷🏻‍♂️ Just funny how this year was the 1st year I wasn’t there at all from May-August and it decided to burn down. Typically I’m there every few weeks from March-October. And since life is lifing, I most likely won’t get to be there when it’s good (spring, early summer) for the next few years. Just weird thinking 2022 was sorta the ‘end’ of everything out there for me and I didn’t realize it. But anyways, *tiny violin*.
  2. ‘Twas a very interesting 24 hours and then several weeks. Luckily, the fire stopped about 400m away from my cabin, but it was so large (106,000 acres) that it may as well have burnt it to the ground as there’s not much around anymore. Theres not one of my birding/hiking spots that isn’t either completely reduced to ash or partially destroyed so… It will be interesting I guess to see the landscape come back, and what new birds/plants/animals rush in, but it will never return to how it was in my lifetime. Unfortunately, 200+ year old cedars take 200+ years to grow. Risks of living in the forest I suppose. This is what the majority of ‘my’ hotspot looks like, this is just down the road. Not total loss, but still killed the majority of the young trees and shrubs. Lost about 4 homes on my street. And this is the provincial park which was sorta the best place to hike and bird. It looks like that every which way you look, and the fire continued up and over that distant mountain. This before photo was taken a few years a go, directly across the river looking right in the first pic. Looks a little different. This spring I guess will really show the true damage, but still sorta surreal to think that it even happened. And here’s the aerial ignition they lit to stop the fire from reaching the town (fail) that I watched get lit from my yard. Lots of controversy over whether or not this lead to the fire getting worse and burning down my town and the next town over, but what’s done is done. Taken about 21 hours before the evacuation order (which at that time the fire was already in the town). Some people had to park their cars on the beach and get evacuated by boat cause the entire road (only one way out) was engulfed in flames. I have probably 100 stories I could add to this thread from my first field season working with grassland birds, but I’ll keep those to myself.
  3. Magnificent frigatebird should be fairly easy anywhere along the coast. You could take a trip to the beach which would keep your family occupied and happy and just keep an eye on the sky. Prepare for a rather lacklustre encounter though, they’ll most likely be way up soaring. There’s a few others threads (if you haven’t read them all ready) of trip reports to the Everglades:
  4. Yup, long-haired miniature dachshund. She turned 12 in October
  5. Do people here actually say “American” before robin and crow? Honestly, I use a shortened version 90% of the time…. At least for the common type of birds with the same last name. A boreal chickadee is never just a chickadee, but a black-capped chickadee sure is.
  6. Snow and cold? Dunno what you’re talking about….
  7. A ton of people here contributed to the GBBC, lots of names I’ve never seen before on eBird. Made for quite a few interesting lists and reports…. Rock Pigeon vs Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) got quite a few people. I ended with 13 as I had some juncos show up this morning.
  8. House finches and chickadees have been singing for a week or two now. Woodpeckers have started drumming, but not really that common yet. Magpies have been doing their weird mating rituals for a few weeks as well. No migrants yet, and all of our winter species are still here. Typically our first gulls come at the end of February so they could show up any day this week, but the temperature is taking a nose dive after tomorrow so might not get anything until March.
  9. I’m at 12 species and I was planning to do my main bird outings tomorrow, but now we’re in the middle of a snowfall warning so doubt I’ll be heading out. So I’ll probably stay at 12 unless something shows up in my yard. Did a quick drive by today to see if I could spot the hawk owl again and found him perched on a spruce, so he’s once again my best bird. Even though I’ve seen him 3 times now (never gets old). Definitely missing the hordes of redpolls I had at this time last year. Still missing them from my year list.
  10. Had fun watching three horned grebes hunt for fish the other day. One caught quite a big one, but decided to eat it as far away as possible from me. https://macaulaylibrary.org/asset/535939761
  11. @DLecy They always upload photos with an explanation. They’re sometimes obvious misidentifications and other times they’re vague photos that maybe could be interpreted as the rare bird (ignoring the location and likelihood) but not enough proof to differentiate from the similar looking common species. They’re not an amateur by any means, but they typically report something crazy every couple months and this has been ongoing for a few years. However, as Liam mentioned, they’re most definitely one of the people that just think their ID is correct. The recent reports that I remember are gray heron, gilded flicker, and spotted redshank…..in Western Canada. All within the last year. @Birds are coolI forgot about that! However, their confirmed reports still get sent through the alert.
  12. A quick trip to my cabin shot me up to 59. This is actually the best February I’ve ever had, but that was a pretty low bar to cross. Hoping to head out a few times during the GBBC, but there’s definitely slim pickings now…
  13. I was curious why one individual had rare birds showing up beside them in the top 100 despite never receiving an email notification in the daily alert. Guess they were shadow banned. Their normal species/lists/photos still show up publicly, but there’s almost no way to find their reported rare birds (talking megas here) even if you search up their name in media and select unconfirmed. Only way to view those species/photos is if you find the checklist that they reported it on.
  14. It would be nice to finally give Canada a true endemic by splitting off the Haida Gwaii subspecies of NSWO. There’s actually a few subspecies of birds that are only found on those islands that probably could reach full species status at some point.
  15. I’m sure highly rated photos do get hit by 1s by a handful of people every now and then (for the reasons discussed in other threads), but since eBird doesn’t show the distribution of ratings, it’s all hypothetical. I’ve had a few photos and audio rated 1-2 stars that obviously aren’t that low of quality, but I only know that since it’s the only rating. But I’ve also had 2-3 star media get rated as 4s or 5s. So it goes both ways. 🤷🏻‍♂️
  16. He’s actually the small blob at the very top of the spruce tree 😅
  17. I haven’t taken any photos since last week, but this is my most recent worst photo… It’s a Northern Pygmy-Owl 😀. Sometimes not carrying a camera has its disadvantages, but realistically it wouldn’t have been a very good photo regardless. Only proof (if you could say that) I have of one, so it stays until I get something better.
  18. IMO I think everyone should try their best to not get fixated on ratings. Not every photo needs to be rated, and not every photo necessarily needs to have a perfect score. 4/5 stars is still a very high rating, so if that’s what it ends up with after being judged by multiple people then that’s pretty good. In most cases, you can find reasons why perceived 5 star photos can be interpreted as 3s or 4s. I’d argue that truly amazing (5/5) photos would be robust to any form of review bombing, especially now with the revamped ‘top photos‘. We also don’t know if photos are getting rated 1s, they could just be getting more 4s, or 3s, than 5s. Which I wouldn’t consider review bombing, but rather part of the gamble you take when you elevate your photo to the public square. So I think if photos don’t get the critical reception that was expected, everyone should maybe take it as a chance review how that photo could have been improved (if at all) and/or write it off as an ‘oh well’ and move on as it’s not the be all and end all—and certainly isn’t the point of eBird or birding. Also a reminder that the rating system only exists to make it easier for Cornell and friends to select photos for Merlin, BOTW, and so on. Even in that case, photos are currently being used that have overall ratings below 5 stars. 5 star photos are definitely something to strive for, but it’s not worth stressing out over.
  19. I think so, but even then Indigo bunting would be very rare as well. As of now there’s still no confirmed reports of one in that county 🤷🏻‍♂️
  20. Since anyone can join eBird and there is no verification process to make sure someone has any bird ID skills or is a real person at all (I’ve seen accounts for dogs, and there was that one account posted here that was a cats kill list) it makes a lot more sense for reviewers and the like to assume BS on reports coming in from people they don’t know that don’t have proof. If you ever scroll through the trenches of Facebook you can see just how bad peoples bird ID can be. Saw one post suggesting a NSWO was a Tawny owl, and another person asking a thorough explanation of the difference between a house finch and a redpoll as they couldn’t tell…. There’s some people here that can get approved with only an explanation, but generally most do provide a photo or the sighting is backed up a few hours later by someone else. Though, even some of the big cheeses with photos don’t get approved right away (or ever) so I would say there’s no real difference in the confirmation process. There’s also the possibility that photos/sounds are being sent to the reviewer through other means than eBird, or the bird itself was reported by someone not on eBird (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, WhatsApp, etc) and is already a known bird outside of the eBird bubble. Your unconfirmed birds still count towards your County ranking so that data is still being reflected in that way and others can see the addition of those birds (if you’re in the top 100). In one of the counties I frequent, someone’s rank went up with the addition of an Indigo Flycatcher… which has a very limited range in Malaysia.
  21. 35 today and I think that’ll be it for January. Still a lot of easy birds around, but with the weather taking a nose dive tomorrow, I doubt I’ll be going anywhere until February. Mostly missing ducks, but they’re all on the opposite side of the city where the river isn’t frozen over. So I’ll probably make a trip over there once the weather warms back up.
  22. Florida—-Northern Mockingbird I’ve travelled to a few states, but Florida is the only one where I was sorta birding and taking photos. Last time I was in the US was 2015
  23. Mine has remained exactly the same. Somehow have gone this long without reporting any escapees, provisionals, or hybrids. 32 spuhs though
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