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Rylirk's 2019 list

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Old Monday 13th May 2019, 04:05   #51
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12/5/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

At the usual haunt of Lake 6 again today, trying to track down that Hermit Thrush I had last week when my camera decided to die. No thrush but, considering I was only out maybe an hour and a half, pretty happy with my lifer!

324. * Bell's Vireo

Last edited by rylirk : Monday 13th May 2019 at 14:27.
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Old Friday 17th May 2019, 14:22   #52
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16/5/2019 - Big Spring, TX, USA

To celebrate submitting my first paper since moving to Texas, I took a day off to go look around Big Spring state park, with targets of Cactus Wren, Woodhouse's Scrub Jay, Pyrrhuloxia and Scaled Quail. Only got 1 of those 4, but I did get 2 more lifers and a year tick I wasnt expecting. So I'm not really sure if the trip was a dip or a success?

325. * Woodhouse's Scrub Jay
326. American Bushtit
327. * Western Tanager
328. * Black-Throated Sparrow
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Old Monday 20th May 2019, 03:39   #53
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19/5/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Another day another flycatcher, in the distance off in a tree. But the real highlights of the day for me were a very showy olive-sided flycatcher (only my 3rd ever) and a pair of showy roadrunners (my 4th and 5th). Always good to finally get a good long view of a bird, especially ones that are supposedly common in your area!

329. * Western Wood Pewee
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Old Thursday 23rd May 2019, 20:29   #54
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Headed back to England for a week for a wedding, so hopefully should be getting some of the English summer birds in the next few days. But first, had a day's birding during a 13 hour flight layover... on my birthday, no less.

21/5/2019 - Denver, CO, USA

Quite a few new birds from Denver today! Target was the black-billed magpie and, as expected, it was quite easy to find. All birds are from City Park near the science museum; heavy snow dissuaded me from trying anywhere more wild... no photo of the hummingbird (which was a brief flyby), so I'm back up to 10 birds seen but not photographed.

330. * Violet-Green Swallow
331. California Gull
332. * Black-Billed Magpie
333. * Swainson's Thrush
334. Eastern Kingbird
335. * Broad-Tailed Hummingbird
336. * Black-Capped Chickadee
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Old Thursday 23rd May 2019, 20:31   #55
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23/5/2019 - Warnham, England, UK

Well, I wasn't expecting to get garden warbler on the list this year! Although it seems like its been a pretty good year for this somewhat difficult bird in the UK. Only my 3rd sighting ever.

337. Common Tern
338. Eurasian Reed Warbler
339. Garden Warbler
340. Common Swift
341. Eurasian Blackcap

Beat my previous year total best of 337 in 2018... and its only May...
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Old Friday 24th May 2019, 15:25   #56
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24/5/2019 - Elstead, England, UK

Off to go see a true celebrity of British birding today! Colin the cuckoo did not disappoint. Did dip hobbies, however.

342. Common Whitethroat
343. Woodlark
344. Common Cuckoo
345. Common Redstart
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Old Tuesday 28th May 2019, 21:18   #57
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27/5/2019 - Henfield, England, UK

One final day of British birding before heading back stateside. Didn't expect to get either turtle dove or nightingale on the list this year, so a nice couple of bonuses there:

346. Sedge Warbler
347. European Turtle Dove
348. Common Nightingale
349. Willow Warbler

Then one more enroute to a quick visit to the grandparents:

350. Common House Martin



Summary for May:

42 year ticks
17 lifers

Last edited by rylirk : Sunday 2nd June 2019 at 04:55.
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Old Saturday 1st June 2019, 23:02   #58
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1/6/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Back in the US, and had a fairly quiet birding day down at the trails beyond Lake 6... until two of these beauties appeared! Frame-filling views

351. * American Barn Owl
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Old Sunday 9th June 2019, 21:40   #59
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9/6/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Very windy down the Yellow House canyon trails today; very few small birds around, except for this lifer!

352. * Lazuli Bunting

Last edited by rylirk : Sunday 16th June 2019 at 20:19.
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Old Sunday 16th June 2019, 20:19   #60
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16/6/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

It's turning out to be a pretty slow June! Still, got another couple of birds for the year list down Yellow House Canyon again today, haven't seen either of these birds since Junction, TX in 2016:

353. * Yellow-Billed Cuckoo
354. * Dickcissel



Summary for June:

4 year ticks
2 lifers (lowest number in a month since I started listing in December 2016)

Last edited by rylirk : Monday 1st July 2019 at 05:14.
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Old Saturday 13th July 2019, 16:30   #61
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13/7/2019 - Badshot Lea, UK

Well, the rest of June and the first half of July in Lubbock were a total write-off! No birds to be found in the Texan summer, apparently...

Back in the UK for a couple of weeks for another wedding and a graduation ceremony. Went to Tice's Meadow to look for LRPs and a common scoter that has been around. Dipped both but got one for the list:

355. Common Sandpiper

Last edited by rylirk : Thursday 29th August 2019 at 15:00.
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Old Sunday 21st July 2019, 15:50   #62
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20/7/2019 - Titchfield, UK

Took the weekend to go and visit my favourite sites from when I was based back in Southampton. Plenty of birds about, but July continues to be a dry month for year ticks.

356. Green Sandpiper
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Old Sunday 21st July 2019, 17:14   #63
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21/7/2019 - Lymington, UK

Down to Pennington Marshes today; seems like a lot of notable birds have been passing through lately, so I was hoping for a few more year ticks! Fairly successful for a change; eiders were absolutely everywhere, and was very nice to see 2 spotted redshanks in summer plumage.

357. Common Eider
358. Little Tern
359. Spotted Redshank



Summary for July:

5 year ticks
0 lifers (first month in my birding career with no lifers)

Last edited by rylirk : Thursday 1st August 2019 at 16:15.
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Old Thursday 1st August 2019, 22:59   #64
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1/8/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Back in Texas. Too late to stave off my first ever liferless month, but good to get a new bird after a 50+ day dry spell! Thanks to the eBird reporter of this bird who, after some emails and text messages, let me come see the bird in her back yard

360. * Rufous Hummingbird
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Old Saturday 17th August 2019, 21:42   #65
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17/8/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Birding Lubbock in summer continues to be a grind... nothing of interest has been reported for months, and its boiling hot every day. Ah well, still going out when I can in case I find anything interesting. One more for the year list today from Yellow House Canyon:

361. Lesser Goldfinch
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Old Sunday 18th August 2019, 15:14   #66
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18/8/2019 - near Abernathy, TX, USA

At last! Some Autumn migration! Up early morning to Uber to a Playa lake ~5 miles east of Abernathy to chase up on a report of (amongst other things) Virginia Rail, Western Sandpiper and Black Tern. Only heard the rails and no sign of the Western sandpipers, but got a couple of bonus birds too. Black Tern has long been my biggest bogey bird; there were a couple of months last year when I would go out to Hill Head (Hampshire, UK) every week to try and find them! So I'm glad to finally get them on the life list!

362. Least Tern
363. * Black Tern
364. * Upland Sandpiper
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Old Thursday 22nd August 2019, 02:26   #67
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21/8/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Another trip to one of the seasonal playas after work. Many assorted sandpipers present, two new ones for the list (and a lifer!):

365. Short-Billed Dowitcher
366. * Western Sandpiper

Last edited by rylirk : Thursday 22nd August 2019 at 16:25.
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Old Wednesday 28th August 2019, 02:12   #68
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Back from a short trip to California, so now I can finally update this with what I found...

23/8/2019 - Mountain View & San Francisco, CA, USA

Quick trip to visit a friend back from my undergraduate years at Southampton. Birding wasn't the aim of the trip, but my non-birder friend may have had to put up with a little more birding than he'd expected

First some California commons from near the house in Mountain View:

367. California Towhee
368. California Scrub Jay
369. Western Gull

Then we headed into San Francisco for the day. Walked from the station up to Pier 39 and got a few more for the list, including the first lifers of the trip:

370. Heermann's Gull
371. * Red-Masked Parakeet
372. Brandt's Cormorant
373. * Western Grebe

Then onto a boat for a whale-watching tour. Had hoped for a few pelagic birds, and did indeed get a few, but the sea was extremely rough and the trip was generally a bit of a washout...

374. * Pelagic Cormorant
375. * Sooty Shearwater
376. * Elegant Tern
377. Caspian Tern

Last edited by rylirk : Saturday 31st August 2019 at 02:03.
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Old Wednesday 28th August 2019, 02:18   #69
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24/8/2019 - California, USA

Travelled around a lot today, so the birds on the life list are from various locations. First stop was at Sempervirens Point near the edge of the Big Basin Redwood Forest:

378. Acorn Woodpecker
379. Band-Tailed Pigeon
380. * California Quail

Then onto Big Basin Forest proper. On a birding front, this place did not disappoint! The woodpecker in particular has been on my wishlist for quite some time now. I could have easily spent days here...

381. * Steller's Jay
382. * Chestnut-Backed Chickadee
383. * Pileated Woodpecker
384. * Townsend's Warbler

Onto Santa Cruz for a look around the boardwalk. No coastal birds for the list yet, but did find one year tick:

385. Anna's Hummingbird

Then on towards the Monterey area. Took a scenic route, and picked up a couple more year ticks from the car in the vicinity of Castroville:

386. Red-Necked Phalarope
387. Whimbrel

We spent time at a few places around Monterey; the only spot that yielded birds for the year list was the coast in the vicinity of the lighthouse at Pacific Grove:

388. Black Turnstone
389. * Black Oystercatcher
390. * White-Tailed Kite
391. * Wandering Tattler

Last edited by rylirk : Saturday 31st August 2019 at 02:02.
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Old Wednesday 28th August 2019, 02:22   #70
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25/8/2019 - Mountain View & Sausalito, CA, USA

Last full day in California and last few year ticks of the trip. Started the day at a bagel shop in Mountain View; while sat drinking a coffee outside I got 2 lifers! Not every day you get 2 lifers during breakfast

392. * Oak Titmouse
393. * Nuttall's Woodpecker

Spent the rest of the day working our way up the coast past San Francisco. Got one final lifer from the trip from a headland west of Sausalito:

394. * Surf Scoter

Last edited by rylirk : Saturday 31st August 2019 at 02:02.
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Old Thursday 29th August 2019, 03:16   #71
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28/8/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

I'd almost forgotten how good Lubbock can be for waders during migration! A quick trip to one of the playas after work yielded sandpipers galore, including one new one for the list:

395. * Solitary Sandpiper



Summary for August:

36 year ticks
20 lifers

Last edited by rylirk : Monday 2nd September 2019 at 14:10.
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Old Monday 2nd September 2019, 14:16   #72
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1/9/2019 - Lubbock area, TX, USA

Early birding excursion with a regular in the Lubbock birding community and a visitor come to see his son at TTU. First stop was at a playa in the vicinity of the ghost town of Estacado:

396. Black-Necked Grebe

Then onto a playa near Abernathy to find burrowing owls for the visitor, then down to Slaton to get me another long-awaited life tick!

397. * Wild Turkey

Last edited by rylirk : Monday 9th September 2019 at 22:36.
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Old Tuesday 3rd September 2019, 02:46   #73
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2/9/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

Up to the playa I went to back on 28/8 to pick up another bird I've wanted for a long time! Was nice and obliging for photographs too! Stayed around until sunset in the hope of getting some nighthawks, but no luck on that front.

398. * Wilson's Snipe

Last edited by rylirk : Monday 9th September 2019 at 22:36.
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Old Friday 6th September 2019, 16:00   #74
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6/9/2019 - Lubbock, TX, USA

I've been going back through old records to upload to eBird recently, and have decided to start uploading daily reports from my walk into work. 3 days into that project and I get a workplace lifer! My 3rd on TTU campus (Ruby-Throated Kingbird, Mississippi Kite) and 4th ever (Grey Wagtail in Southampton, UK)!

399. * Wilson's Warbler

Then out to Clapp Park after work with a couple of local birders, looking for vireos (which we didn't get) and nighthawks; an unexpected bonus lifer too!

400. * Willow Flycatcher
401. * Common Nighthawk

Last edited by rylirk : Monday 9th September 2019 at 22:36.
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Old Wednesday 11th September 2019, 19:33   #75
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11/9/2019 - Vienna, Austria

Off to another conference, and I'm rather hoping for some good birds from this one. But first I have to suffer through 4 flights. One of my layovers was long enough to go out and bird, so I had a look around the Tiergarten on the western edge of Vienna. Very very quiet, but got one lifer which eluded me last year in Germany:

402. * Middle Spotted Woodpecker
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