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migrateblog
in which witness is borne: birds, politics, fiction and critical art theory

heroes of observation

Tuesday, May 17, 2005
Witness Doug Stotz, my favorite ecologist of the moment, from the Field Museum of Natural History here in Chicago, birding in Grant Park, the urban oasis on Lake Michigan today:
"Out in Grant Park today, 17 May, it was not bad. The only migrant that
was really common was WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW with 260. The number two
migrant was LINCOLN'S SPARROW with 21. I had 20 species of warbler,
including my first BLACK-THROATED BLUE, WILSON'S and CANADA of the
spring. The most abundant warbler was AMERICAN REDSTART with 16. Other
birds of interest included a RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD, NORTHERN
MOCKINGBIRD, and PURPLE FINCH."

Yes, that's right: he saw 20 species of warbler. In the Olympics of birding, Dr. Stotz would totally win a medal.
And anyone who can spot a hummingbird in a tourist-filled urban park--we're talking highly, highly evolved birding sense. I am humbled and jealous.
12:45 PM :: ::
2 Comments:
  • A hero, indeed. I always count myself lucky if I identify one new bird :-) I'll be in Chicago in June, and will be sure to go to Grant Park.

    By Blogger Eva, at 12:58 AM  
  • ooh, you have GOT to go over to Montrose Point and the Magic Hedge, where 95% of NOrth America's songbirds stop over at this one little sandy hedge on the lake! Take Lake Shore Drive to Montrose, and then follow the signs for the Magic Hedge!

    By Blogger mar-mar, at 6:36 PM  
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