Sunday, December 8, 2013

Crushing Year Birds With The Inner Circle

I started this whole Crushing business so that I could be super lazy with my blogging. That is why you have not seen a Crush in many a moon. For this I am sorry. All I can do is promise to try harder.

Since leaving the Island, I have gotten something like 35 State Year birds. The accumulation of State Year Birds has consumed my entire being. It is all that I think about. I have spent an enormous amount of time and energy on Sierra Yankee Bravos. I have had help from family, friends, and the hyper-secret society known as the Inner Circle of California Birding. As I write this, I have 18 days left to add to my CA 2013 list. This is a very small amount of days. My list stands at around 415, and I am hoping for at least ten more before I fly to Mexico fro the last week of 2013. Here are my Crushes of some post-SEFI birds. Most are Yankee Bravos, but not all.

Savannah Sparrow, Salt Springs Valley. Not a year bird. Not even a rare bird, but I thought that it was interestingly buffy. Buffiest Savannah I've ever seen. 

Scarlet Tanager, San Diego. 

This is a top secret Inner Circle San Diego bird. If you would like to see it, you must either check every Coral Tree in Mission Bay, or learn the Puppet-master's Secret Handshake.

I had to pay twelve bucks for this State Year Bird. It was foolish of me to wait until November to see a Common Poorwill, but this was the Crushiest Poorwill I've ever gotten to see. Totally worth it. LA Natural History Museum.

Just one more of this stunner. Kimball said that this bird is quite pale and is likely not the typical subspecies seen in S. California. I know little of such matters, but trust in this information wholeheartedly. 

Mmmm... Life Birds. So delicious. Oscar Johnson and family kindly shuttled my friends and me around Santa Cruz and Anacapa Islands a few weeks ago. It was ridiculously fun. We saw the Jays on Santa Cruz and I found the first Island Record for Scarlet Tanager a few minutes later (not sufficiently Crushed for blogging purposes).

Masked Booby, Long Beach Harbor Buoy. This is one of two MABOs that roost every night on a buoy near the entrance to the Long Beach Harbor. They are awesome, and you can see them by buying a ticket on a whale-watching boat. Again, totally worth it. We saw Blue and Fin Whales as an added bonus.

I think it was Jon Feen who spotted this totally typical American Coot at my birthday party in Earvin Magic Johnson Park. Compton, CA.

Outright State Bird. Also another birthday bird. Philadelphia Vireo at Legg Lake. Quite drab for a Philly.
I shocked the birdwatching community to its very core by finding and Crushing this Blackpoll Warbler at Legg Lake this fall. Los Angeles will never be the same.

I will never forget this day. The Inner Circle accepted me as one of their own. They introduced me to Puppet-master McCaskie, taught me the Handshake, issued me a personal Com-link unit, and allowed me to bask in the glory of this beautiful Wood Thrush somewhere in Southern California. 

The bird just kept walking up to me on the lawn like a lost puppy, so I did what came naturally. Crushing. This little booger had his face so Crushed in that by the time I was done, I don't think he could fly straight. Hopefully, the bird survived the Crushing process.