My final tally for Global Big Day was 60 species of birds - which means a nice, even $300 for Wild and Free!
May 4th was a beautiful day in Minnesota. The day started with 39F and patchy fog, but it eventually warmed to 70F with no humidity, easily our nicest day of the year. After finding 49 species in the morning, things slowed in the afternoon, mainly due to a lot of the same birds being seen in multiple locations, and because I think this year's migration is slow. I only saw two species of warblers, and I visited five different parks, so there are a lot of birds yet to arrive. Still, it was a fantastic day, and I tied my previous best Global Big Day total.
The full list of birds I saw is as follows (it was a great sparrow day):
Canada Goose, Trumpeter Swan, Wood Duck, Blue-winged Teal, Mallard, RIng-necked Duck, Hooded Merganser, Ring-necked Pheasant, Wild Turkey, Pied-billed Grebe, Rock Pigeon, Mourning Dove, Sora, Sandhill Crane, Killdeer, RIng-billed Gull, Forster's Tern, Common Loon, Great Blue Heron, Turkey Vulture, Broad-winged Hawk, Belted Kingfisher, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Blue Jay, American Crow, Purple Martin, Tree Swallow, Barn Swallow, Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch, House Wren, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Eastern Bluebird, Hermit Thrush, American Robin, Brown Thrasher, House Finch, American Goldfinch, Grasshopper Sparrow, Chipping Sparrow, Field Sparrow, White-throated Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow, Henslow's Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Lincoln's Sparrow, Swamp Sparrow, Eastern Meadowlark, Red-winged Blackbird, Brown-headed Cowbird, Common Grackle, Palm Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Northern Cardinal, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, House Sparrow
Thank you to each and every one of you who supported this campaign. It means the world to me!
On May 4th, 2019, I will be participating in the fifth annual Global Big Day. Each year thousands of birders around the world embark on a race of sorts - a bird finding race, if you will - to identify as as many species of birds as possible in a single day.
In celebration of Global Big Day, I have established this fundraiser for Wild and Free. They are a non-profit wildlife rehabilitation center in Garrison, MN, that helps injured and orphaned birds and animals in an effort to release them back into the wild. I have been a supporter of theirs for a number of years. They subsist entirely on charitable donations, and the work they do is extraordinary.
This fundraiser also has a personal meaning for me. I completely owe all of my birding and photography interests to my parents, and I am doing this in memory of my incredible father who passed away unexpectedly last year. Dad was a bird and wildlife photographer; an artist who had a great rapport with the natural world around him. He loved and appreciated the work of Wild and Free, and I want to honor him with this fundraiser.
Would you please join me in supporting Wild and Free? I know they would greatly appreciate any help we can offer, especially as their busy summer season approaches.
As for me, I will personally pledge $5 to Wild and Free for every different species of bird I find on May 4th. My previous best Global Big Day effort was 60 species, but I hope to eclipse that this year with some better planning. I will provide updates following the event with a full report on my numbers and total contribution.
Thank you very kindly for your consideration!