Day 118 - Impatiently Waiting...

Wednesday, April 27, 2016 0 Comments A+ a-

The waiting game can drive a person nuts. Whether its knowing there is a rarity to chase that you can't quite get away to look at yet--or--just knowing there are new birds arriving everyday and wanting to get out to look for them, but can't because of the weather, time, or any number of things. There is also the waiting game of having a planned trip and having to wait while you see others pile onto their year lists while yours slowly creeps higher. The waiting game, especially in the age of eBird can be maddening.

For the past week I've meandered around picking up a few new birds as they arrive and/or head north.    The first Obvious Hikers of the year showed up and I'll have to admit--I didn't report them.  They're common enough, and I wanted to keep my day list a secret.  The day also turned up both American and Usual Loungers, and my first Dusky Yellowchests of the season.  I didn't get a picture as the yellow chests were just an audible.  I've only had a handful of audibles this year that I haven't gotten pictures of, so my hopes remain high that I'll find some later to take pictures of.  As of today I added 7 species since my previous post--and am still missing some of the most common arrivals of the season...

Today I am playing the waiting game for the month of May. April has been kind to my year list, but not as kind as I had hoped. I had planned to have 2 more major birding outings for the month which would have probably netted 50+ species, but it looks like both trips will be pushed back to May. May will be busy. I will be fitting a lot of birding into a few days spread out of the month. In between specific outings to help build my list, I'll be trying to spend several hours every morning in the field, playing the odds, and hoping to find a few rare birds to help pad my year. And the wait is killing me.

I expect May will produce no less than 74 new years birds, and maybe as many as 89. If I pick up 89 that will put me right at 300 species five months into 2016. That's a good place to be at going into June. June should net another 10-15 new species before things slow down for July. Then fall migration will hit and we'll be right back at it. So you might be thinking, this undercover birders is telling me that 1/2 way through the year they think they'll have around 310-315 species of birds. What does that leave for the following 6 months?

I won't get into the specifics of that yes as its still 2 months away, and everything right now is speculation. That number might key you in on a handful of states to look at--but your list should have been narrowed considerably at this point. I'm not going to give any clues away in the next two months that will help though. No proper names, no narrowing of states, nothing. May and June are all about the birding and hammering away at the have-to-gets, and the have-to-chases. For now I'm impatiently waiting for the next new year bird, and the birding that will follow over the next 60 days!

New birds this post: 7
Year List: 211


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I'm on a mission to see as many birds as I can in 2016... within the borders of my home state. The only catch is I'm not telling anyone that I'm doing a Big Year...