Apartment Birding and Fire Escapism

Tim HealyBird Sightings, Birding, eBird, Listing, MigrationLeave a Comment

When I first moved into my Astoria apartment in early December, I immediately began keeping a “yard list” of birds seen around my new home. My expectations for the potential of this urbanized neighborhood weren’t particularly high, but I reasoned that watching for birds of note outside my window would be a fun way to pass the time between proper … Read More

The Snowy Owl’s Supper, a Pellet Mini-Mystery

Tim HealyBehavior, Bird Sightings, Birding, Identification, Mammals, Mystery Birds, Science1 Comment

My fondness for Snowy Owls is well-documented. I consider myself incredibly fortunate to live in a corner of the continent where sightings of these nomadic raptors are an annual occurrence. I’ve spent many a winter’s day trudging about on the barrier beaches of Long Island in search of Snowies. It was through such scouting efforts that I honed my field … Read More

Life in Queens: A New Patch

Tim HealyBanding, Bird News, Bird Sightings, Birding, eBird, Listing, Research, Science1 Comment

My recent move from Nassau to Queens was one of the final big events in a very eventful 2019. A few months out, I’d consider myself comfortably settled in, and the pros certainly outnumber the cons so far. Somewhere in between “notably shorter, easier commute” and “return to reliance on laundromats” on the Cool-to-Lame Scale lie the changes to my … Read More

2019 Top 10 Birding Highlights

Tim HealyBirding, General Rant, Listing, Rarities, Trip ReportsLeave a Comment

Like many nature-based bloggers, I enjoy closing each year with a retrospective highlight reel. Ever since 2016, this personal countdown has taken the form of a Top 10 Lifers post, detailing the best new species I tallied during the preceding months. 2019, however, has been the undisputed biggest year of my life thus far. A pair of long-awaited dream trips … Read More

October Big Day 2019

Tim HealyBig Days, Bird News, Bird Sightings, Birding, eBird, Listing, Mammals, Migration, Migration Update, Rarities, Science, Trip ReportsLeave a Comment

Who doesn’t love a Big Day? Any excuse to get out and count birds in the name of science is a worthwhile cause in my book. eBird has been orchestrating Global Big Day events each May since 2015, an international effort to record as many of the world’s species as possible within a 24 hour period. Last fall, the Cornell-based … Read More

Beyond the Shelf Again

Tim HealyBird Sightings, Birding, Listing, Mammals, Trip ReportsLeave a Comment

Late summer is usually a busy time, filled with pre-work preparations and plenty of outdoor exploration as vacation ends and migration begins. This year I was fortunate enough to join a pair of offshore journeys with See Life Paulagics. The first was a two-day cruise from Point Pleasant, New Jersey on the Voyager in mid-August. The latter was a September … Read More

Birds We’ve Met Before

Tim HealyBehavior, Bird Sightings, Birding, General RantLeave a Comment

Knowingly seeing an individual bird that has been previously encountered is a special treat in the world of birding. Most birders would probably agree that the fascinating life cycles of these wild creatures are among the greatest draws that keep people invested in the hobby. It is a truly remarkable privilege to witness multiple chapters in the stories of specific … Read More

Boreal Bird Blitz

Tim HealyBird Finding Tips, Bird Sightings, Birding, Photography, Rarities, Science, Trip ReportsLeave a Comment

No one likes to let vacation time go to waste. As my schedule began to fill up with responsibilities and obligations, it became apparent that I wouldn’t be able to orchestrate a grand international adventure for my February break this year. Nevertheless, I still had a few days to spare and didn’t want to spend them just sitting around. I … Read More

2018 Top 10 Lifers

Tim HealyBirding, General Rant, ListingLeave a Comment

At the end of every year, I like to take some time to reflect on the highs and lows of the year’s birding escapades. 2018 definitely had its rough spots, with a few painful dips and shortcomings scattered throughout, but on the whole it was a fantastic year chock full of great birds. Out of 526 species observed since January … Read More

Finch Flight Frenzy

Tim HealyBird News, Bird Sightings, Birding, distribution, eBird, General News and Info, Migration, Migration Update, Predictions, Rarities, ScienceLeave a Comment

“Mr. Healy, I have a question I’ve been meaning to ask you.” My coworker approached me as I was stowing my binoculars after a brief pre-work survey of the schoolyard. “I’ve been at my place in northern Jersey for years now, but this year I’ve noticed something different. There are these birds, I can only describe them as…finches?” I smiled, … Read More