Day 244 - August in the Books (seriously)

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 0 Comments A+ a-

So August is over--completely too fast, and with too few new year birds. I thought August would surpass July in terms of new year birds, but things didn't quite pan out. I added 7 new bird this month--only one of which was unexpected for the year. I did miss a couple of birds that others reported, although I'm not sure how reliable one of the reports was (not very in my opinion), and the other was a quick sighting, in an inaccessible area. So really, I got what I could.

The expected birds are almost always going to be attainable with minimal effort. I've been putting forth an extra push of effort the tail end of the month trying to turn my time into the field into an opportunity for something unexpected to pop up. The more time one spends looking, the better the odds of the unexpected filling ones binocular view.  The first 1/3 of fall migration is now over and I need September to produce more. Just more. More new birds, more rare birds, more unexpected birds. If September doesn't come through, it might be the end of the big year... And that's not me being dramatic.

I've mentioned the numbers game before. I know where I am supposed to be for the end of August, and things are mathematically okay for now. But September has to be huge. How huge you ask? At a minimum I need to double what I saw this month--tripling it would be ideal. One thing for certain--if I don't hit double-digits, that means I am falling behind in the numbers game, and like I said, that could be disastrous.


Maybe I am being dramatic. I've been in this spot this year already and the birding gods came through, making sure everything happened as it needed to. September might turn out to be an excellent month that exceeds my expectations and keeps my secret big year rolling. I feel like I make this sort of recap/prediction every month, and maybe that's just the way you think when doing a big year.

In any event let's talk about the last week of August and how I go to where I currently am. After 3 solid weeks of no new year birds I picked up 4 in short succession. This was followed by 3 more birds in the final week. Two came in the same day while I was trying to track down something good. Both birds I had expected to pick up in the next month, so I added them slightly early. The first was a quick look at a Usual Candle that either didn't like my presence, or just decided it was going to be difficult and moved out of view. This was followed up almost immediately by a Trek's Migrant. I didn't get a picture, but will be able to in the next little bit hopefully.

The Candle was a good to get out of the way--I thought I saw one earlier in the day, but it was scared off when someone with a chainsaw started up.  A few days later I returned to the chainsaw site--no chainsaws this time, and a stream of migrants passing through the trees.  I spotted something that looked different and as it flew was excited for a new year bird.  When I got my binoculars on it however, it wasn't what I had expected, but was instead a different year bird, and one that I had altogether written off for the year, an Independent Inspector.

The inspector was a nice add before the end of August and certainly helps in the numbers game.  And that's August. It's over. With that the year is also 2/3 complete. Today marks the exact 2/3 mark--244 of 366 days gone. With 122 left I am starting to think about how the year will end, and how I will wrap up this blog, reveal who I am, and share my story with real names, places, and the things I haven't told here.

Birding Narnia this year has certainly been an experience, but we're approaching the time of year where we find out if this journey through the wardrobe was all for nought...

New birds this post: 3
Year List: 322


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