Saturday, January 9, 2010


I'm a little embarassed to admit we went twitching today. Twitching is a birding term for traveling some distance just to get a look at a rare bird. I'm not crazy about the idea for a couple of reasons. First, it's not exactly ecologically sound to drive a great distance for something so frankly frivolous. Second, it can be harmful for a rare bird to be mobbed by eager birders anxious to get it on their life lists. Just last year, I believe it was, a Burrowing Owl lost it's life in the Chicago area because of too much attention.

Still, the co-conspirator and I didn't have any big plans today so we threw some optics in the car and took off for Wisconsin's East Coast to see a Black-legged Kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla.) It's a pretty little gull that has been present in the harbor at Port Washington for nearly a month.

We watched it sitting on the water.

We watched it flying around.

We watched it catch and eat a fish!

All this made us hungry so we stopped at a local Mexican restaurant and had lunch before returning home. So, I guess you could say we combined two activities into one trip.

2 Responses:

Dev Wijewardane said...

the flight shot looks quite sharp. They take a lot of practice to perfect.

Gallicissa said...

I strongly object the use of the word, frivolous. The twictching scene here is not bad as in the UK and US, and we do not get huge crowds congregating at sites to cause disturbance for birds and general public. I think twitching spices up one's birding life! Quite often you get other birding and wildlife viewing opportunities too and it doesn't seem that you have made the effort just for one bird in the end. I missed the target bird on one of my solo twitching expeditions, but ended up seeing male Leopard for 1 1/2 hours on that trip near a water hole, amply justifying all the rupees I spent for that trip.