Saturday, December 26, 2009

Last CBC, and home

Dec 28, '09 - Jan 1, '10

Monday - Pretty laid back day. Birded the Northshore Nature Center right outside Mandeville across from Fountainbleau State Park. I've birded the park before too, and it's really good. When I was there it was right after Katrina, there were big piles of downed trees, but the thing that sticks in my memory was the man at the gatehouse who said that the thing he lost in the storm that he regretted more than anything was his life list of bird sightings. A lesson there, and why I multiply back up my records on three kinds of media. I did some shopping, and got a nice feeder setup for Angela, with a big good quality feeder, a metal hanging hook, some feed, and a water dish to set up a dripper. Back at Lindy's we watched TV, which of course I don't remember, and told each other stories.
Tuesday - Northshore/Slidell CBC - Great good luck got me assigned to Bill Wayman, a fine birder and someone intimate with the area we had to cover. Basically it was both sides of the Rigolets, the inlet between the Gulf and Lake Pontchartrain, one of the main routes of the storm surge into the lake where it broke out into the city. The rest is history, sadly. We had pretty good luck, and in fact had the highest species count for any team, 88, including one new for the count, Black-bellied Whistling-Duck. Bill knew tiny little spots that paid off, a little almost hidden mud patch for shorebirds, abandoned subdivisions, little views through the vegetation onto duck filled ponds, the spot on the old fort wall that was reliable for Spotted Sandpiper. He was a great person to spend a day with, and gave me the combination to his gated community house the next day to find a Rufous Hummer. We attended the compilation somewhere out there, I could never find it again since he was driving. Back to Lindy's.
Wednesday - Went by for the hummer, worked on getting Lindy's cable and wifi working, don't know that I actually accomplished anything, Then drove into New Orleans to deliver the feeder to Angela. Strangely enough, it was raining. I had pretty much done what I came for, and looking at the rain, just decided to go home. Drove all the way to Memphis in the rain, and arrived at Shiloh's around 8:30.
Thursday - New Year's Eve - Spent the day getting email set up on my backup Netbook computer, helped with prep for a small party, bought a couple of Pizzas, played games, talked to friends and strangers, and said goodbye to 2009.

Morning helping with some cleanup and talk with Shiloh, then home where everything was fine even though I'd run out the whole tank of gas that I left turned on for bare-bones heat. It must have been cooler than usual, but no frozen pipes or plants.

Even though it was the rainiest month in history in Louisiana, including months with hurricanes, every CBC day was dry and even nice, no terribly windy days either. Five CBCs in LA had put me in great shape for making the 50% threshold for the ABA list, but I was still short a few tics.


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