Thursday, March 17, 2016

There and Back Again - A Chaser's Tale by Jeremy Dominguez

Posted by Christopher Collins On 12:57 PM | No comments
March 17, 2016 - 

As mentioned in the previous post, Jeremy has been chasing all over the place lately adding some amazing birds to his Lifelist and to the RBABA list. Read about his amazing adventure with a few friends and a local legend. Bird On!!!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Ohio's Ten Most-Wanted of 2015

Posted by Christopher Collins On 5:00 PM | 1 comment
March 13, 2016 - 

Now that Jeremy has taken a break from running all over the country chasing down rare birds, he's finally ready to post a blog that he started back in January. There were some great bird species that visited the state of Ohio last year. Here is Jeremy's Top Ten List of Ohio Vagrants of 2015. Bird On!!!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Rogue Rehab - An Introduction

Posted by Christopher Collins On 12:58 AM | No comments
March 9, 2016

Every once in a while I would see a post on Facebook about a bird needing help. A common reply to these posts was, "Contact Tim Jasinski!" I was curious who Tim was, where he works, what he does there, and what happens to the birds he treats. We are proud to announce the start of a new series on the Rogue Birder blog - Rogue Rehab, featuring Tim Jasinski!!!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

RBS - A New England New Year - by Sarah Lucas

Posted by Christopher Collins On 11:54 PM | No comments
January 6, 2016

Happy New Year! To start the year off right, Jeremy and Sarah took off the the Northeastern United States to get away from work, spend some time together, and seek out some new species. A whirlwind weekend as they celebrate a New England New Year!!!

Thursday, December 31, 2015

RBS - Bramble On - by Chris Collins

Posted by Christopher Collins On 12:50 PM | No comments
December 31, 2015

It's the last day of the year. We have so many new posts lined up. Alex and Jeremy's Ohio Big Year; Jacob's Mini Lower 48 Big Year, guest posts, and new features (Tim J!). For now, here's what happened yesterday while seeing the best Ohio Bird I saw this year. Enjoy!!!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Birds and Brews - Orange County - California

Posted by Christopher Collins On 10:34 PM | No comments
December 28, 2015 -

In this latest installment of Birds & Brews, I went back to familiar southern California. Since I had about a half of a day free, I decided to venture a little further from LAX and El Segundo than usual. My plane arrived at LAX around 1PM local and I collected my bag at the baggage carousel. I picked up my rental car, checked into my hotel, dropped off my bags, and headed south.

While I usually go north to Malibu, or stay near the airport at Playa del Rey, I decided to do soemthing different this time. I drove south past Long Beach, and ended up in Huntington Beach at Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. The plan was to bird as long as I had light and then head to a brewery before going back to my hotel. Since I hadn't been to Bolsa Chica before and I had absolutely no idea where I was going due to poor planning, I stopped first at Pacific Coast Highway entrance across from Bolsa Chica State Beach. This turned out to be a great choice as there were birds everywhere as soon as I left my car.

Immediately upon leaving my car I saw a gaggle of photographers working the boardwalk to the east of the parking lot. I saw Western Grebes, American White Pelicans, Lesser Scaup, Great and Snowy Egrets, and a Reddish Egret (my first ever in its “red phase”) amongst hundreds of other birds. After getting a number of great photos, I kept walking down the boardwalk as I knew that I had a long distance to cover. After leaving the boardwalk, I saw a fenced-off area which has signs stating that it was a shorebird nesting area. On the other side of the fences, I saw more marshland and to my surprise 55 or more Brant. Unfortunately, the Brant were a fairly good distance away, not allowing me to do much better than record photos. While looking at the Brant, I noticed a bunch of shorebirds and ducks on the bank. I noticed that there were Long-billed Curlew in the group, my first lifer of the trip. Almost as soon as I had noticed the Curlews and taken a record shot or two, a male Northern Harrier flew by scaring all of the birds off of shore.

Since the Harrier scared everything away, I kept walking to the next point where I saw another Long-billed Curlew foraging in the mud near shore. I sat down on the bank and waited for it to get closer. Sure enough, it did and I was able to get great full-frame photos. After a while of watching the Curlew, I continued to see what else I could find. I saw Northern Pintail, American Wigeon, another Reddish Egret, Savannah Sparrows everywhere, and even a few Surf Scoters as I made my way to the other end of the reserve. I also saw countless shorebirds on the mudflats adjacent to the highway, but without a scope, I wasn't able to get thorough looks. In addition, there was an abnormally large number of little-old-ladies walking there in parkas staring at me for wearing a t-shirt in 65 degree weather.

I turned around at this point and headed back to see what else I could find. I stopped once in a while to take more photos as the birds didn't seem to care that humans with gigantic lenses wanted to get close to them. When I got back to the boardwalk, I just tried to improve on my photos despite the fact that it was starting to get dark. But, I still wasn't finished birding as a congregation of White-faced Ibises flew by, allowing for some low-light shots, my last of the day. In all, I saw 44 species of birds, a very respectable total for two and a half hours, though I'm sure it could be easily increased with better planning before arrival.

As the sun set over Bolsa Chica, I got back in the car and headed northeast to Placentia, home of The Bruery. The Bruery is a nationally known craft brewer specializing in barrel aged and experimental ales according to their website. What I knew The Bruery for is their Belgian styled and sour beers. After a surprisingly short drive given Los Angeles traffic, I found a dark industrialized warehouse complex. My GPS told me that I had arrived, but I was suspicious. But, I drove on to the back of the complex. Apparently my GPS was right as The Bruery was in the very back with their own “beer-tower”. When I walked in, I immediately knew that I would like the place, but also that I had to restrain myself for the 45 minute drive back to my hotel afterwards.

To start, I saw a table with a menu of all of their beers and a card to order a flight. Since I had never been to The Bruery, I felt this was a good first choice. I choose five beers of a few different varieties and sat down to drink. It wasn't until after I started drinking that I remembered that California doesn't have a law like Ohio limiting beers to 12% alcohol. It seems as if I'll need a designated driver next time. Though I really missed an opportunity at tying a beer into this column by failing to order the “4 Calling Birds” beer, I feel that I made some great choices with my samples. The MolĂ© Smoking Wood, a bourbon barrel aged porter with cacao and Mexican spices was my favorite, a delicious monster at 13% alcohol.

In addition to that, I tried a number of other fantastic beers before settling on a pint of the Autumn Maple, a Autumn seasonal brewed with 440 pounds of yams. Before I left, I was determined to spend entirely too much money there and left with a few bottles and a t-shirt to bring home.

In all, it was a great day and night, and I would have stayed longer if I didn't have to drive. 44 birds in Orange County, California and an amazing new brewery made my work trip worth it. I'll certainly go back if I have the chance.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

RBS - My Mini Big Year - by Jacob Roalef

Posted by Christopher Collins On 8:27 PM | No comments
December 19, 2015 - 

After topping the eBird charts for Ohio last year, Jacob set out this year to expand his knowledge and his Lifelist by traveling across the country to chase down as many species as he could. With help from Danno, the Rogue Birders, and others, he has made us all very proud with what he has accomplished this year. Here is the first installment of his "Mini Big Year". Much more to follow!
Start making plans for 2017 May 5-14!!