Tuesday, September 4, 2007


This morning, my last in MI, I sat nestled in the window seat with my coffee and looked at the birds at the feeder.

First I saw a gorgeous male American Redstart. I saw one in my yard at home the other day, too--a new yard bird for me. I've now seen this species in Michigan, in North Carolina, and in the Caribbean.

As cool as the Redstart was, though, I was extremely surprised to get a new lifer, as pictured from someone else. An eensy-bitty Red-Breasted Nuthatch swooped down to the feeder, grabbed a nice seed, and zoomed back over to a blue spruce in the neighbors' yard. I was impressed with myself that despite an originally flash-like glimpse, I identified the bird based on my General Impression of (its) Size and Shape (GISS--unfortunately pronounced "jizz"). Sibley and a number of much longer observations confirmed it. Cool.