I’m once again in full chase mode and loving it. Seeing the Graylag Goose gave me a certain sense of vindication. The chance to right a planning mistake on my part; to make things even sweeter, Bland Liz saw her nemesis this morning and Doug Koch and I were able to take photos (see 12-06 post) of the goose while it perched on it’s favorite rock for an hour. But that was then and this is now. It’s Wednesday evening and I’m racing from Baltimore to San Antonio on a Southwest Airlines flight, which should arrive late tonight. Sweet Texas has delivered once again. Tomorrow morning, I’ll drive to the Upper Rio Grande Valley seeking two Brown Jays that are visiting the feeding station in Salineno, TX. This is the first time any have resurfaced north of the border since the Rio Grande R. flooded last year. After that it’s off to California for a Sunday Bodega Bay pelagic trip with the “Dream Team”. I will try to fit in a play for the Rufous-capped Warbler (it was confirmed today) before I take my last trip of the year to the Great White North –this time to Adak in the Aleutian Islands. Hopefully, I won’t get stuck out in inclement weather and will return to Colorado on Dec19 with 12 days to chase rarities and hopefully time to fit in a pelagic trip out of North Carolina with the Admiral of the Atlantic himself, Brian Patteson. A quick note – Linda and I will not celebrate a traditional Chriistmas together this year. Instead she’ll chase with me. I’m inclined to base out of South Texas or Tucson so we won’t be pinned down by weather, but we’ll see.
So this is the plan, tentative though it may be. I could reveal future birds on my wish/prediction list, but fear I might jinx it, since so many of them have already come true over the last thirty days. I’m too busy to make a year-end prediction myself, though Chris Hitt, who as many of you know reached 704 in the lower 48 last year, has made some predictions as well as analyzed other “Big Year” lists. It’s an interesting read; if you wish here is the link.