Saturday, February 11, 2012


Meanwhile...back at the Longest Twitch...

Continuing on from last weekend at Miller Road Park, and looking out onto the lake we saw hundreds of Red-breasted Mergansers and a few of those gray and white birds and one black and white bird. Oh, and one odd bird all by itself.

When I first spotted it, I thought "Myself(that's what I call me), that looks like a bird in the water, and NOT a gull. 
Myself thinks it's a Grebe."

"But wait Myself! Lookit them wings..."

"And that longish pointy like beak..."

"Myself, that there bird might be a Red-throated Loon!"

"Or is Myself the loon here?"

"Myself, maybe it's an odd looking Horned Grebe...yep, that's it."

 "But wait, after looking at Myself's many guides of the field, 
photographic and otherwise, maybe it is a Red-throated Loon."

Well, after hours and days of arguing with "Myself," I have surrendered. It is both a Grebe AND a Loon. The world's first hybrid and documented here for the very first time. I shall await a call from the National Geographic...or possibly the local asylum.

What do you think...about the bird that is?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Longest Twitch goes on and...A CONTEST!!

Power Plants attract gulls and ducks! 

Ah, the continuing saga of...
The Longest Twitch! 
This weekend we finally made it outside to find us some birdies. And we did manage to find a few. There had been reports of THOUSANDS of those silly gray and white birds at Lorain Harbor...butt of course they were gone when we showed up. Go figure. So, we hit three spots on the Lake Erie Birding Trail Saturday, Lorain Harbor, Lakeview Park and Miller Road Park. 

This post will focus on Miller Road park in Avon Lake, right next to a power plant. Because of the power plant's out flow of warm water, the lake doesn't freeze in this area. Though this winter, nothing froze. You can tell you're having a mild winter when there's no ice on the lake, the Doodles hasn't fallen down and your face isn't numb from the wind! Also, the variety of watery wet birds isn't quite up to standards. It was still a good day with Bufflehead, Common and Red-breasted Mergansers and another odd bird that I'll post in the next installment! Stay tuned kiddies!

The Doodles gives this park a "4 bench" rating...they're everywhere!

Spoiled by the warmer than usual winter, even 40 degrees f. feels cold!

Yes, there are even birds in the trees here!

We saw hundreds and hundreds of Red-breasted Mergansers flying past and floating in the lake.

This poor lady has about a hundred males zooming up behind her.

 Just chillin' in the lake...brrrr....

Oh look, a gray and white bird and a Bufflehead.

There's just a few birds that hang around here...
For you folks that like those gray and white birds, look closely, there's a number of Great Black-backed Gulls on the jetty. Wheeeee.

Gulls doing what they do best...making other things gray and white.

 This bird was making the boy ducks crazy!


Who's butt is this?

This is a real live contest, open to anyone but the Doodles, anywhere in the world. Princeton University Press has a new book, "Petrels, Albatrosses, and Storm Petrels of North America" by Steve Howell. This book is great for any of you pelagically inclined folks that don't have vertigo(like me!) and won't stay below deck giving up your insides while trying to keep your camera clean(like me.) Fantastic photos, great descriptions and more in a format that even I can figure out!

Speaking of Princeton Press..."Avian Architecture", a book I've mentioned here won a Prose Award  in the Popular Science category, and "The Crossley ID Guide", another fine book that I use, won best Single Volume Reference Book and the Award For Excellence in Reference Works. One day I'll torment you all with my book of bird butts...

Post your answer in the comments section! I'll pick the winner and get your shipping address and you'll be all set to ID those birds and lose your lunch!

Good luck...