Crawlin the Walls in Niwot

Obsession.  My thoughts are dominated by an incessant  desire to chase. And it’s getting stronger every day. It crept in while I shoveled 10” of snow from the driveway this morning, “There’s a Crescent-chested Warbler at the Melrose Trap”.  Last night over dinner with Linda, I could barely taste the luau pork and brown rice and hardly heard anything she said; only the whisper in my mind, “There’s a Green-breasted Mango at Quinta Mazatlan in McAllen”.   The fact that I’ve sat idly around the house for the last three days certainly hasn’t helped.  I’ve got way too much time on my hands. So I’ve come up with a goal.  Two new year-birds before the Hyannis Pelagic trip on Nov. 12th.

In order to reach one’s goal you need a plan. Here is my plan. First of all it’s now time to chase the Eurasian Tree Sparrow.  Aaron Brees from Iowa, one of my blog readers, floated an interesting suggestion.  Why not try for the Eurasian Tree Sparrow in Iowa and combine it with a search for Gray Partridge?  This immediately struck a chord. It’s perfect. I’ll fly into Chicago and join up with some of my brothers. We can drive out to Iowa City; have dinner with our nephew Bob and then the next morning team up with the  Mailman – James Huntington. Secondly, the Pink-footed Goose in Nova Scotia was seen again today by Dave Currie.  My plan is to chase it (or a closer one) on the front end of the Hyannis Pelagic trip.

Of course, both these plans may be tossed into the wind if I get the call this weekend. “John, the chase is on.  A Mega Rarity has shown up in -California, Texas, Florida, the East Coast, or any place else in the ABA area- you must leave now. You must leave now.”

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12 Responses to Crawlin the Walls in Niwot

  1. Gloria Nikolai says:

    What a fabulous adventure you are on! Thanks so much for putting your thoughts, photos and plans on-line so they can be shared by others. I am a beginning birder, love to photograph birds and went to see The Big Year last night. That led me to avoiding work while I puttered around the www today and stumbled on your website. Great find for me, I am enjoying every entry (started with October and then ditched that thought by going back to January). I have some catching up to do! I love the photos – thank you, thank you, thank you!

  2. Sounds like a good plan, good luck!

  3. Great plan, good luck to you!!

  4. Mike Hendrickson says:

    Especially good luck on the Gray Partridge! That is a tough bird to get right now.

  5. Linda Vanderpoel says:

    I guess I could cook “s&*%” for dinner and he wouldn’t even know it. . . .

  6. Harriet Stratton says:

    go. leave now.

  7. Todd Myers says:

    What would Sandy K. do? Chase! The finish line is close and you know it. Blast that record away! Then, on New Years Day, 2011–have your wife recook that meal so you can really taste it.

  8. Mike Hendrickson says:

    Good one Linda you made me laugh!! Then on the side have a nice roasted Crested Auklet too!

  9. Jim Mountjoy says:

    If you do plan to chase Eurasian TS on a Chicago to Iowa run, you should contact me. You will probably want to search south of I-80 (there are a few ETS north of the interstate, but not many), and shooting down to Galesburg on I-74 may be the most efficient way to get into an area where they are fairly common. I would be more than happy to guide you to them if we can arrange this. E-mail me if this is of interest and I will send more contact details.

    Jim Mountjoy
    Galesburg IL

  10. Fernando says:

    I’m not from the U.S. so I don’t know the reason, but why you can’t count the California Condor?

  11. Alison Quinn says:

    That’s a great question, Fernando. The California Condor became extinct in the wild and it is uncertain whether it has truly been re-established by the reintroduction efforts.
    And, Linda, I bet he’s missing your dinner tonight as he huddles over a Subway sandwich.

  12. John Buchanan says:

    Hey John- great blog
    Fascinating to read it from here in the UK- we can relate to your exploits but with a different species mix. While you seek out stray Barnacle Geese & Pinkfeet amongst the Canada Geese, we are hunting out Snow, Ross’s & wild Canada Geese amongst our Pinkfeet & Barnacles!
    Best of luck with chasing down another dozen before the year runs out- we’re rooting for you!
    John Buchanan

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