Bill and I are flying back to Anchorage this afternoon where we will spend the night. Tomorrow we head north to Barrow with Zugunruhe Tours. Now it’s time to summarize the St. Paul adventure and reflect on a few things. But first of all to update day 7, we did not add any new birds for to my year-list today. Bill caused some excitement in the crab pots when he located a small bird hiding in the pots, but it turned out to be a Ruby-crowned Kinglet. I was able to flush up the Siberian Accentor for the Heavy Hitters and Friends, which was nice. We also relocated the Eurasian Bullfinch in the same barabaras Bill found it in yesterday evening. Larry Peavler was able to see it this morning and it was ABA #869 for him. Incredible! I always feel a sense of satisfaction in helping others find birds, especially when it’s a life bird. Monte Taylor flew in on the same plane we flew out of; he needs the bullfinch for photographed bird ABA #821. Hopefully Doug will show him where the bullfinch is hiding.
Speaking of that it’s time to recognize another type of birder; Doug Gochfeld is in the field birding day in and day out, birding a particular area and finding unusual birds. Whether it’s in their own favorite patch or county, dedicated birders like Doug are the heavy lifters. They find birds. Without them the rest of us wouldn’t see as many birds as we do, nor have as many birds to chase. So here’s a toast to the Heavy Lifters- those birders who find their own birds and enrich the birding experience for the rest of us.
Anyways, St. Paul was an incredible experience. I’ll never forget St. Paul- the fallout – adding three life birds in a single day. Or the thousands of Northern Fur Seals. Or the great food at the Trident cafeteria. Or the miles of walking over uneven terrain hoping to find a mega. Or the wind swept landscape on a sunny day. Or the excitement of a Eurasian Bullfinch on the last full day. Yeah, it would have been nice to add a few more birds to my life list, but I wouldn’t trade any of it. How blessed am I?