Desired Life Bird Meme

Yeah, yeah I’m late to the party, but I got the idea from the gang over at 10,000 Birds and Nate at The Drinking Bird.  Really this turned out to be far more difficult that I thought it would be.  But here we go.

1.  Boreal Owl:  I have seen every Owl east of the Mississippi River except for Burrowing and Boreal Owl.  Of the two, I would like to see Boreal the most.  This slightly larger cousin of the Northern Saw-Whet Owl, spends most of the time in the vast (but shrinking) boreal forests of Canada, and only a few unlucky individuals make it as far south as New York in winter.  They may be more common in the Adirondacks in winter, but 98% of the habitat is inaccessible during this time of year.  Of course like most rare owls, you never know when or where they will show up, the last Boreal Owl I know of was actually in Central Park in New York City!  But I didn’t see it.

2.  Harlequin Duck:  This duck at least winters closer to me, from Long Island to Maine, but I so infrequently visit the coast, especially in winter that it is a bird that has eluded me.  A better effort by me and I’m sure to get it!

3.  Western Tanager:  Another ‘common’ vagrant to New York.  They periodically show up and I miss them.  I guess I could solve the situation by going out west, but that isn’t possible at the moment.

4.  Spruce Grouse:  With an estimated population of perhaps only 300 birds in New York State, this is one of the most sought after breeding birds in the State.  I once traveled north to a remote private bog in search of these birds, with Corey Finger, Tom Williams and Jory Langner.  We didn’t find them, but others have.  So maybe next year?  If not I got to plan a Trip to Algonquin Park in Canada or the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont.

5.  Elegant Trogon:  If I could find one of these guys in New York, I would win “Birder of the Year” (if such an award existed).  When I do finally get to see one, I bet it will be in the same tree as a Western Tanager!


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