Monday, January 3, 2011


Monday, January 3, 2011

My last bird of 2010 was a whinnying eastern screech-owl, calling from the north border of our farm. I heard it at about 10:50 pm on New Year's Eve, while spending some time around a camp fire with my family and some dear friends. The owl was calling so softly that it was really hard to discern, even though the night was pleasingly still and quiet. It seemed a fittingly subtle and mysterious species to be the last bird of the year (or LBOTY).

My first bird of 2011 was a male northern cardinal in the same tree as this photo and in almost exactly the same pose, minus the snow.

I make a big deal out of the first bird of the year. Sometimes I even go to great lengths to make it a special species. However this year I was feeling rather Zen about it and decided to just let it happen.

And, as it did happen, my FBOTY was Mr. Reddy. He was waiting patiently for SOMEONE to fill the bird feeders, and he successfully guilted me into it.

Thanks for stopping by to read my posts here during the past five-plus years. And thanks even more for all of your comments and kind words.

Here's wishing you a wondrous, healthy, happy, and bird-filled 2011!

Bill of the Birds


On January 3, 2011 at 5:44 PM Lu said...

I liked the pictures!
Beautiful bird!
I like owls.It's a beautiful bird.beautiful eyes!

A beautiful 2011 to you, MANY accomplishments!


On January 3, 2011 at 7:31 PM cyberthrush said...

What was your LDOTY and FDOTY?
(last and first dog of the year)

On January 5, 2011 at 11:29 AM Anonymous said...

Thanks for the last 5 years. Here's to at least 5 more. You and yours have a delightful 2011.
Lynda in Michigan.

On January 5, 2011 at 10:00 PM Caroline said...

We South Dakota birders did a last of the year, first of the year tally on our listserv. People don't really cheat, but go to some lengths to not have that first bird be a pigeon or a starling :o)
2010 ended with house finch and 2011 began with chickadee for our feeders.
Happy New Year to you as well.

On January 7, 2011 at 9:47 AM Rondeau Ric said...

Thanks for the blog Bill, hope everyone has a good year.

On January 9, 2011 at 1:25 AM cindyzlogic said...

Super captures, Bill! I have yet to photograph an owl. Your Cardinal photo is so beautiful...great job!!

On January 11, 2011 at 9:56 PM The Zen Birdfeeder said...

You set an excellent example "settling" for a cardinal as your FBOTY. I'm glad you did!