Birding in the Parks
Birding In The Parks: Discerning An Ancient Murrelet From A Japanese Murrelet At Point Reyes National Seashore
If I were to mention a controversy at Drakes Bay in Point Reyes National Seashore, undoubtedly the two words that would pop into your head are “oyster company” rather than “Japanese Murrelet,” but the latter is what birders have been talking about since Thanksgiving week.
It’s not much of a secret among my birding companions that I am quite fond of woodpeckers. From their unique physiology allowing them to safely bang their head into wood for hours on end to the common theme of stark black, white, and red coloration, woodpeckers are fantastic birds.
I write this from the south shore of Lake Superior, not far from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. Two days ago, while casually birding the lakeshore, my wife Sarah spotted a Black-crowned Night-heron. That’s an extremely unusual bird to find as far north as the Superior shore.
Spring is an exciting time for both birds and birders across North America. The colorful songbirds are on their way back to their northern nesting grounds after spending a lazy winter in the tropics. Warblers, with a rainbow of plumages and equally diverse collection of songs, are the most sought-after birds during migration.
I spend quite a bit of time talking about Everglades National Park, and with good reason. I doubt there’s a birder in the country who would rank it out of the top five national parks in the country for birding. It’s that good.
A fascinating post appeared at the American Birding Association’s young birders’ blog, The Eyrie, last week. You can read it here, but if you’re short on time, here’s the digest version: Birders don’t often bird true wilderness because wilderness is less birdy than fragmented and disturbed habitat often is.
Birding In The National Parks: Enduring The Heat To Bird In Saguaro National Park And Chiricahua National Monument
This past year we started a bimonthly column on birding in the national parks, which is a great way to enjoy the parks while learning more about the hundreds of species that flit about the National Park System. Here's a look back at those columns.