Jump to content
Whatbird Community

A Series of Unfortunate Events


meghann
 Share

Recommended Posts

What I where in the summer:

Fishing/kayaking pants.

Most of the time I where a short sleeved shirt.

A light weight, gator(I think that's what they are called.)face covering .

Broad brimmed hat.

Advantages/disadvantages 

Sandals-Light, fast dry, comfortable, and does not collect a bunch of velcro-like-seeds and stickers. Disadvantage, the tops of your feet are open to stickers, bugs, sticks poke into you, etc.  

Fishing/kayaking pants-Dry fast, keeps you from having to put a bunch of sun block on, and reflects the sun off of you, keeping you cooler. The disadvantage is price$$, but, like @Caley Thomas 2.0 I have some from Academy that aren't so much. Also, I would suggest not getting the ones with the zippers to make them shorts, they are not as comfortable as the ones without.

As to a shirt, it does not seem to matter too much, and it depends on what you are doing, plus the weather.  

Gator face covering- Keeps the sun from your neck and face. Can't think of a disadvantage.

Broad brimmed hat-More sun protection. Disadvantage, some times it is hard to see birds up above you. Also If you get a hard brimmed one it can cause problems with you camera/bins. 

https://www.omahas.com/product-category/clothing/headwear-2/boonie-hats/

By the way, Army surpluses are great! 

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Kevin said:

What I where in the summer:

Fishing/kayaking pants.

Most of the time I where a short sleeved shirt.

A light weight, gator(I think that's what they are called.)face covering .

Broad brimmed hat.

Advantages/disadvantages 

Sandals-Light, fast dry, comfortable, and does not collect a bunch of velcro like seeds and stickers. Disadvantage, the tops of your feet are open to stickers, bugs, sticks poke into you, etc.  

Fishing/kayaking pants-Dry fast, keeps you from having to put a bunch of sun block on, and reflects the sun off of you, keeping you cooler. The disadvantage is price$$, but, like @Caley Thomas 2.0 I have some from Academy that aren't so much. Also, I would suggest not getting the ones with the zippers to make them shorts, they are not as comfortable as the ones without.

As to a shirt, it does not seem to matter too much, and it depends on what you are doing, plus the weather.  

Gator face covering- Keeps the sun from your neck and face. Can't think of a disadvantage.

Broad brimmed hat-More sun protection. Disadvantage, some times it is hard to see birds up above you. Also If you get a hard brimmed one it can cause problems with you camera/bins. 

https://www.omahas.com/product-category/clothing/headwear-2/boonie-hats/

By the way, Army surpluses are great! 

I'm with you on this as well, but due to my frequenting coastal Texas areas, I'd gotten so tired of biting flies and mosquitos that I opted for long sleeve shirts and also the head net.  Not exactly a 'cool' look, but I stopped caring about that a long time ago to be honest.  I'm even considering some sort of lightweight / breathable gloves for some of the worst areas to keep the biting flies / mosquitos off of my hands as of lately! 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Caley Thomas 2.0 said:

I'm with you on this as well, but due to my frequenting coastal Texas areas, I'd gotten so tired of biting flies and mosquitos that I opted for long sleeve shirts and also the head net.  Not exactly a 'cool' look, but I stopped caring about that a long time ago to be honest.  I'm even considering some sort of lightweight / breathable gloves for some of the worst areas to keep the biting flies / mosquitos off of my hands as of lately! 

There is one place I hit up occasionally that has a TERRIBLE deer fly problem. One time I was there I wore a blue hat, and they were insane. I read later one theory that they're attracted to the color blue. Fantastic.

  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/22/2021 at 11:38 AM, PaulK said:

Ha, that reminds me of a hike my wife took alone (came with me on a work trip). It was utterly silent, snowing heavily, and she saw these.

 DSC_0051.thumb.jpg.bcd053e0801002be3e7f29451a5722a1.jpg

DSC_0053.thumb.jpg.72206695e76b855ca46e9f356b82eec0.jpg

Note the lack of snow accumulation from the ongoing blizzard. She hopped the fence to a horse farm and trespassed across to get to the road as quickly as possible. She'd been incorrectly assured that the grizzlies would be hibernating.

Bigfoot!

Edited by Seanbirds
Yes, this is a joke
  • Haha 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This story actually has a happy ending, but didn't know where else to tell it, so here's as good as anywhere:

Today when I was out trying to relocate the Wilson's @HamRHead found, I walked down a treeline. On my way back, I heard a lot of chipping noises, and could see a flurry of activity. I walked over to where all the movement was coming from, and it turns out to be a female black-and-white warbler, hanging with the tip of her wing trapped in remnants of a Golden-silk Orb Weaver web.

I walked over to where she was and reached up, but she was too high, and I couldn't touch her. I hunted around and found a stick with a crook on the end. I figured I'd snag the web and drag it down. I tried multiple times. Sometimes the bird would grip onto the stick, which I was happy about, and it would help take some of the weight off her wing. Inevitably, she'd panic, flail, and cause the line she was hanging from (which I thought at first was fishing line, and am glad it wasn't) to swing back and forth. I'd have to wait for the swinging to slow down, and try again. Finally, after a dozen tries, I had snagged the line! Huzzah! I was relieved, because I was starting to get concerned that she was going to break her wing.

I was able to drag it toward me, as well as her. This is where the bird FREAKED. She did not like coming closer to the giant ape-like creature. I finally got a hand on her and tried to get her securely. First attempt failed, as she was feisty and tried to bite me and flapped around, squawking loudly. Luckily, she couldn't go anywhere, as she was attached to the spiderweb securely. Finally, I was able to get my hand all the way around her and cupped her to my chest and decided on a plan of action. I unhooked the stick and dropped it to the ground, and then attempted to pull the line off. It was tricky, that spider makes some TOUGH stuff. (And I was afraid to pull too hard, as I didn't want to hurt her.) I finally figured out a way to hold her body still, but the tip of her wing out where I could pinch the feathers, and was able to use the other hand to break off the spider web line. I opened my hand and she hastily flew off. As she did, I noticed she still had spiderweb on her wing, but I figured she'd be ok, considering the fight she put up, and the fact that she flew just fine.

Later that day I was back in that same spot and saw a female B&W Warbler high up in a tree foraging for food. I like to think that was her. 🙂

So, I didn't get the Wilson's, but like I told my friends, I obviously was meant to be in that spot at that exact time. Since I didn't see her on my way up the treeline, just on the way back, I had to have found her right after it happened.

I have attached an illustration for you, since I didn't get any pictures.

rescue.png

  • Like 14
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, meghann said:

This story actually has a happy ending, but didn't know where else to tell it, so here's as good as anywhere:

Today when I was out trying to relocate the Wilson's @HamRHead found, I walked down a treeline. On my way back, I heard a lot of chipping noises, and could see a flurry of activity. I walked over to where all the movement was coming from, and it turns out to be a female black-and-white warbler, hanging with the tip of her wing trapped in remnants of a Golden-silk Orb Weaver web.

I walked over to where she was and reached up, but she was too high, and I couldn't touch her. I hunted around and found a stick with a crook on the end. I figured I'd snag the web and drag it down. I tried multiple times. Sometimes the bird would grip onto the stick, which I was happy about, and it would help take some of the weight off her wing. Inevitably, she'd panic, flail, and cause the line she was hanging from (which I thought at first was fishing line, and am glad it wasn't) to swing back and forth. I'd have to wait for the swinging to slow down, and try again. Finally, after a dozen tries, I had snagged the line! Huzzah! I was relieved, because I was starting to get concerned that she was going to break her wing.

I was able to drag it toward me, as well as her. This is where the bird FREAKED. She did not like coming closer to the giant ape-like creature. I finally got a hand on her and tried to get her securely. First attempt failed, as she was feisty and tried to bite me and flapped around, squawking loudly. Luckily, she couldn't go anywhere, as she was attached to the spiderweb securely. Finally, I was able to get my hand all the way around her and cupped her to my chest and decided on a plan of action. I unhooked the stick and dropped it to the ground, and then attempted to pull the line off. It was tricky, that spider makes some TOUGH stuff. (And I was afraid to pull too hard, as I didn't want to hurt her.) I finally figured out a way to hold her body still, but the tip of her wing out where I could pinch the feathers, and was able to use the other hand to break off the spider web line. I opened my hand and she hastily flew off. As she did, I noticed she still had spiderweb on her wing, but I figured she'd be ok, considering the fight she put up, and the fact that she flew just fine.

Later that day I was back in that same spot and saw a female B&W Warbler high up in a tree foraging for food. I like to think that was her. 🙂

So, I didn't get the Wilson's, but like I told my friends, I obviously was meant to be in that spot at that exact time. Since I didn't see her on my way up the treeline, just on the way back, I had to have found her right after it happened.

I have attached an illustration for you, since I didn't get any pictures.

rescue.png

This story makes me happy.  ❤️ 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

To date this was the most memorable day I have ever spent birding. I started off at Chatfield State Park on the Jefferson County, CO side. It is mid August 2015. I'm meeting up with a fellow birder. We find a Red-necked Phalarope which are pretty rare in Colorado and see several other shorebirds. We were on our way to bird another area when I accidentally locked my keys in my car. I called my husband and my fellow birder moved on. My husband rescued me in fairly short order and I met up with the fellow birder once again. He had to get going by then having to travel out of town for work so we parted ways. Chatfield State Park is not far from Waterton Canyon and I had been seeing photos posted of bears on a social media sites taken in the canyon. I had never seen a bear live and in person so I headed up the canyon walking in hopes of catching a glimpse of a bear and maybe some Big horned Sheep. Along the way I saw some good stuff. Posted below along with the Red-necked Phalarope. (Don't scroll down more than 4 photos yet). Before too long I come up on a number of photographers standing on the edge of the dirt road/hiking path. The road is closed to all but a couple of residents. I immediately see what has captured their attention and begin to photograph my self. Sorry the photos aren't better not sure why they are so hazy for the bear shots. Any way what I walk into is a Momma black bear and two cubs. You barely see the 2nd cub in the first two bear shots. By the 3rd bear shot you can tell something has captured their attention. Don't scroll past that 3rd bear photo yet. So suddenly the remaining cub and Momma bear leave with some haste (the 4th bear photo) and I see all the photographers attention has shifted up the road a bit further. Which is when I see what is in the next set of 8 photos. A male black bear is feeding on the carcass of a bear cub. He apparently decides he doesn't like the audience on the other side of the stream and picks up his meal and begins to carry it off. He starts onto a rock slide portion of the bank of the stream and drops the cub carcass which rolls down the bank as limp as a rug. I don't get a photo of the carcass rolling down the bank but the next photo shows the bear seemingly debating whether or not to retrieve the carcass. He decides to retrieve it shown in the next photo. He then proceeds to carry it up the bank and disappears. No one knows if this was his kill that he came back for or the kill of a mountain lion he came across. Whatever the case I am at this point dazed and saddened by what I have just witnessed. Yes, I know it is just the circle of life but it was difficult to witness none the less. All the bears are gone at this point but I was still hoping to see some Big horned Sheep so I turn to go but look up the mountain on the other side of the road and see the last photo. I get a bunch more photos of Big horned Sheep in the next few minutes then decide to call it day and walk back down the road/trail still truly in a daze. I tried to brush it off and bird my way down but it was hard to get the dead cub out of my head. 

079.JPG

116.JPG

123.JPG

132.JPG

135.JPG

147.JPG

150.JPG

153.JPG

159.JPG

162.JPG

166.JPG

167.JPG

168.JPG

171.JPG

174.JPG

175.JPG

180.JPG

  • Like 3
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Clip said:

 

180.JPG

Thanks for ending with this shot! It made me smile after the sad photos. That was a big cub he had, too.

As far as locking the keys in the car, I've done that on multiple birding trips. After all my adventures with things like that, we figured an AAA membership was a smart move.

  • Like 2
  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, meghann said:

Thanks for ending with this shot! It made me smile after the sad photos. That was a big cub he had, too.

As far as locking the keys in the car, I've done that on multiple birding trips. After all my adventures with things like that, we figured an AAA membership was a smart move.

Every six years or so it seems I just have to lock my keys in the car. We have a AAA membership now but didn't then.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, meghann said:

Thanks for ending with this shot! It made me smile after the sad photos. That was a big cub he had, too.

As far as locking the keys in the car, I've done that on multiple birding trips. After all my adventures with things like that, we figured an AAA membership was a smart move.

That last shot remains one of favorite photos. I even have it on a coffee mug. He was completely entertained apparently watching all the photographers on the road below. Such a cutie with that heart shaped nose. It was a sight for sore sad eyes after watching the events on the other side of the stream.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

…..

So. Decided today was the day to go search for a Great Gray owl (🙃), and some other less likely possibilities like gyrfalcon, Northern hawk owl, and maybe add some birds to my county list I haven’t added yet (Canada Jay, golden eagle, barred owl). 

Always had a hunch that this one area was the spot people were seeing them, but it took some researching and ebird sleuthing to confirm it. I set the data range on ebird for March of this year and the purple squares overlapped with the general area so they had at least been seen within the last 20 days. 
Planned to go at 8am this morning (about an hour away) but woke up to a giant snowstorm (happy spring!).  
Left around 3:30pm, when it was mostly sunny, but driving along there were several random small snowstorms that just kept blowing in.

Finally get to the correct habitat (trees instead of fields) and start driving slowly. I was in the passenger seat, but even going slow I did not know how I was going to see a very well camouflaged owl amongst thick spruces and aspens at that speed, let alone if I was just walking. 
A few minutes of driving and we turn down a gravel road and keep going. 

Then what do I see but a giant grey ball of fluff on a far away fence post behind us. My brother stops the car and I grab my camera, But he flies off before I can do anything. Though, he actually came and flew in much closer to the road and landed in a small tree. So we slowly drive up a few feet and he’s just perfectly perched right by the side of the road. I zoom in on him from the car window and press the focus button but nothing happens. So I keep pressing the focus button and still nothing. I think that maybe I accidentally switched it to manual focus, but nope it’s on auto. I turn the camera off and on and still nothing. And then finally I see on the screen it says “NO CARD.” Then I remember how I took the SD card out of the camera a few hours earlier to try and decipher a chickadees leg band and left it on the counter. 
And of course I have no backup SD card.

So I’m just dumfounded with my own stupidity and my brothers laughing, meanwhile the owl is just chilling perfectly on that branch listening for voles.

So I decided to just watch him for a bit and take in the moment, reminding myself that it’s not all about taking pictures (Denial, the first stage of grief). He stays on that branch for a couple more minutes, tilting his head around listening for voles before he jumps off and flys back down the road into the forest. It was all very cool, such a massive owl.

We decide to continue on driving just to see if I can spot any of the other owls, as the likely hood of running into interesting things increases ten fold when you don’t have a camera. 
Didn’t see anything else the rest of the trip, but very good views of a dark morph rough-legged hawk perched on the side of a road and a very nice Northern shrike perched on the side of the road too. Both of which I needed good photos of (🙃). Though I did add Canada Jay to my county list.

So yup, that had to happen with a lifer, and a Great gray owl of all birds I guess. I’ll try again to see if I can find him in the coming weeks (with a camera and an SD card) as it’s not too far away of a drive. Though, I know it’s gonna be very difficult to A) see one again so easily and B) see one so close and in the open.

Here’s the photo I took through my binoculars just to show you how good of a photo opportunity I missed 

5C396737-163A-4B47-9286-D4184F5313D8.thumb.jpeg.50251f40d53415adf852711d4565b9d8.jpeg

And here’s a photo I took with my phone from the car to show how close he was

B2D611B5-9B4E-4B27-AA52-8D0335D73304.thumb.jpeg.663430bcd9e368a0ae0f3676afa7e2e3.jpeg
 

Writing this out as a form of therapy and a reminder to always check your camera before you leave and to bring extra SD cards!
 

So funny to me that I went to look for this specific bird for the first time and ended up finding it right away, as that never happens. I guess it was all too easy so something had to go wrong. 😪

Would have finally changed my profile picture :’)

  • Like 5
  • Sad 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 minutes ago, Aaron said:

The likely hood of running into interesting things increases ten fold when you don’t have a camera. 

This is by far the most relatable thing I've heard all year!!!

Congrats on the GGOW, I've always wanted to see one! Not that many here in California sadly. 

Edited by Aidan B
  • Like 5
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 hours ago, Aidan B said:

This is by far the most relatable thing I've heard all year!!!

Congrats on the GGOW, I've always wanted to see one! Not that many here in California sadly. 

I swear it’s true… I often ask myself if I should bring my camera and see nothing, or not bring it and see something cool 🤷🏻‍♂️.

Thanks, I really don’t know why I never tried to see one sooner. Definitely one of the coolest birds I’ve seen in Canada. If you ever make it up here I know a place! 
 

13 hours ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Change it.  That photo looks good enough for profile purposes. 

I might test it out, but I’m a bit crazy when it comes to change so I feel like it’d need to be ‘perfect’ for me to commit to it. Plus, there’s so few of us left who haven’t changed profile pics yet, so I don’t know if I should break from the tribe for a photo I took through binoculars 😂

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Aaron said:

I swear it’s true… I often ask myself if I should bring my camera and see nothing, or not bring it and see something cool 🤷🏻‍♂️.

 

I’ve seen two Merlins perched on campus so far. Both times I didn’t have a camera on me, or binoculars. Now I try to keep my camera bag in my backpack when I have room. Haven’t seen another Merlin on campus since…

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/20/2022 at 10:11 PM, Aaron said:

And then finally I see on the screen it says “NO CARD.” Then I remember how I took the SD card out of the camera a few hours earlier to try and decipher a chickadees leg band and left it on the counter. 
And of course I have no backup SD card.

On 3/20/2022 at 10:11 PM, Aaron said:

Writing this out as a form of therapy and a reminder to always check your camera before you leave and to bring extra SD cards!

You only make this mistake once…hopefully. I have a camera bag that doesn't get put into the closet until everything is in it. If I take something out, the bag stays on the table. I also have two spare SD cards (which have no reason to leave the bag unless they get used) and a spare battery (which only comes out if I need to charge it). If I haven't drained a battery or changed in the field, I will always have a full battery in the bag. When I take one out to charge, the full spare immediately gets put into the camera.

Edited by Zoroark
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

58 minutes ago, Zoroark said:

You only make this mistake once…hopefully. I have a camera bag that doesn't get put into the closet until everything is in it. If I take something out, the bag stays on the table. I also have two spare SD cards (which have no reason to leave the bag unless they get used) and a spare battery (which only comes out if I need to charge it). If I haven't drained a battery or changed in the field, I will always have a full battery in the bag. When I take one out to charge, the full spare immediately gets put into the camera.

Are you prior service / ex-military, by any chance?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Are you prior service / ex-military, by any chance?

No, but a lot of family members are veterans, and my father swears by having a packing checklist when going on trips.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...