Friday, January 1, 2010

January 1, 2010: First Birds

On the first day of the near year, I like to make a personal game out of listing the first 10 bird species I see. So far, here's my list: 1. Crow.

Granted, I slept in, and a wet heavy snow has been falling since yesterday. But after asking my friends on Facebook what they've seen today, the range of responses has made me a bit envious. A friend in the deep South saw a black vulture. My father in Delaware saw snow geese while out on a walk. A friend in Hope saw a deer under her apple tree. My neighbor saw her chickens (hey, a bird's a bird!) Others have seen woodpeckers, chickadees, doves, and titmice at their feeders. Where are my chickadees? Where are the ducks? I think I'm going to have to actually venture outside my cozy house  to really see what's out there.

As if to confirm this, a crow just flew into the yard, cawing energetically. It landed on a branch right outside my window in a poof of snow, cawed in my direction a few times as if to say, Get out here now!, and flew back across the yard to join its friends who are all now making a racket somewhere down river.

First bird of the year:
black crow flies past snowy trees,
yin-yang made alive.

Update: I went out to run some errands and stopped off to scan Camden Harbor. Now it's near dark, and my list has not expanded by much. Hopefully this isn't prescient of my birding luck for the year ahead, though presumably I will be making a much greater effort on future occasions.

2. Mallard
3. Black duck
4. Herring gull

No other identifiable birds--not even a chickadee, which was last year's first bird. Except a lot more crows, as if they want to be sure I know they are the Bird of the Day. Or maybe Bird of the Year!

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