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« September 2007 | | November 2007 »

October 26, 2007

Fall Reading

The morning frosts are so heavy now they appear like light snowfalls. The clear skies and the full moon last night reflecting off the frost covered forest made the night radient with light. Scott Weidensaul's new book "Of a Feather, A Brief History of American Birding" is a nice book for fall reading. I only wish he had gone in deeperi into the subject. There is much that is left out, but his goal for this book was a brief history. His earlier book "Living On The wind, Across the Hemisphere With Migratory Birds" is very worth reading, too.

October 18, 2007

Birding Festivals

We just wrapped up the annual birding festival, BirdFest, at Ridgefield National Wildife Refuge along the Columbia River between Washington state and Oregon. There were guided walks and birding tours, live bluegrass music and Sandhill Crane tours. A birders marketplace and various family activities make birding festivals a good opportunity for children to have fun and introduce them to the fun of birding and develop an appreciation for the natural world. Check out the National Wildlife Refuge System on the web to see where the nearest ones are located to you and look for the announcements of birding festivals. Some of the major festivals like the one at Bosque del Apache in New Mexico are events that attract people from around the world.

October 08, 2007

Fall Rains And Busy Birdfeeders

With the longer nights and colder days my birdfeeders are seeing non stop action. Spotted Towhees, Oregon Juncos, Fox Sparrows, as well as Song Sparrows, Black Cap Chickadees and Chestnutback Chickadees, Nuthatches and the occasional Downey Woodpecker are coming and going. While cleaning out the rain gutters of Douglas Fir needles I looked up at several flocks of Canada Geese passing overhead.

Recently I bought a long sleeved crew neck shirt and leggings to wear as an base layer to stay extra warm while out birding (or cleaning rain gutters). Made from very soft and non itchy, pure Merino wool they are now my favorite instead of synthetic "fleece". Mine are made by "Icebreaker", but there are also other brands on the market. Treat yourself to a warm base layer of clothing of Merino wool for fall and winter wear. Comfy to wear indoors, too, if you want to turn down your thermostat a couple of degrees to save energy and heating costs.

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