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wildfelco

What is your 3 Best Lifers?

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1) Horned Lark, which I found only a few weeks ago.

2) Greater Roadrunner, which I saw first in west Louisiana in 1967.

3) Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, seen in Texarkana, Arkansas in 2002.

I only have a photo of #1. Now my desire is to get good photos of #2 and #3.

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I decided to add my three favorite birds.  I think they are my favorites because I get to see them in my backyard or at least my neighborhood.

1. Cooper's Hawk

2. Sandhill Crane

3. Eastern Bluebird

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1) Florida Scrub-Jay, went to Merritt Island NWR looking for them, found them and had one land on my hat.

2) Painted Bunting, also at Merritt Island NWR. I was about to leave, when this guy was leaving and asked me if I had scene the Painted Bunting and he then told me where to find them.

3) Groove-billed Ani, a rare visitor to Florida, saw him at Paynes Prairie.

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My rare ones are on my signature with the best probably the Brown-Chested Martin.

More common ones I enjoyed:

1)  Monk Parakeet (my guess as the most intelligent bird I've seen)

2)  Eastern Bluebird (this yard-bird sparked my interest and got me hooked three years ago)

3)  Black-Billed Cuckoo (because I found it without any help or tips)

Fun post!

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1)  Barn Owl - because it's my favorite bird and because I got to see them up close and hold them (babies, anyway!)

2)  Cedar Waxwing - because I had been looking for a LONG time and finally found them!

 3)  Canvasback - same reason as #2 above!

 

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Hoo, boy. That's a very tough question.

!. Pileated Woodpecker has to go on here. For years my grandma would call to say that one had been visiting her feeders and maybe it would still be there when I came for a visit in a few days. Never got to see it. Finally, last year I saw (if I remember correctly) four flying overhead on a camping trip and then one a few months later in GA.

2. I think the Blackburnian Warbler deserves a place on this list because it was the first warbler besides Yellow-Rumped that I was able to identify. I've seen other warblers, but never got a good enough look or photo for ID.

3. The Eastern Kingbird may be one of my most memorable bird sightings. Several years ago, one let me get within a few feet of where it was sitting. Too bad I wasn't into photography then!

Just realized...I don't have photos of any of these birds. 

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For me, it would have to be Chinese Pond Heron, Eurasian Tree Sparrow, and Light-vented Bulbul, but that's only because I lived in China for a time. Those three are actually really obvious "gimme" birds there.

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Great thread, very interesting. Notice the frequent mention of Pileated Woodpeckers. I will admit they are awesome birds, no matter how frequently you see one. Here is my list (subject to change because this is off the top of my head)...

1- California Condor (Last summer at the Grand Canyon, AZ)

2- Barred Owl (Summer of '07 in my neighborhood- only wild owl ever heard or seen)

3- Sandhill Crane (seen for first time this year migrating in NY- rare) / Magnificent Frigatebird (sorry for dual entry, but I was about 12, saw it in NY and remember it vividly)

 ...Still thinking about the question/revising list lol...

 

~Matt in NY 

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1. Whooping Crane. I got to photograph a group of 19 a couple of years ago. That was pretty exciting to say the least.

2. Would have to be the Bald Eagle that was eating a dead pigeon IN MY FRONT YARD about 5 years ago. I've seen a few hundred Bald Eagles in my life, but to get on as a yard bird has to qualify in the top three.

 3. In Montana about 10 years ago I got to watch a mother Peregrine Falcon apparently teaching her youngster how to stoop at some ducks on a small lake I was fishing on. This went on for about an hour and they would often zoom by me within 20 feet. That has to be my all time favorite birding experience.

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1: Crested Caracara seen in Winter Garden, FL

2: Smooth-billed Ani seen in Windermere, FL

3: Bobolink at the Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive

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I'm not sure what you mean by "best" lifers, so I'm going to arrange these in categories 

Rarest lifers:

1. Pink Footed Goose!

2. Rock Wren

3. Northern Shrike 

Prettiest Lifers:

1. Indian Peafowl

2. Alexandrine Parakeet

3. Brahminny Myna

Lifers with restricted ranges

1. Brown Rock Chat 

2. Himalayan Bulbul

3. Shikra

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My 3 favorite birds (in terms of how exciting it and memorable they were...). All are from Northern Mississippi except the 3rd.

1) A beautiful male Wilson's Warbler which I discovered during the winter. In Mississippi, where I live, they are uncommon in migration, so it was an especially unusual siting. I'd only been birding 1 year at that point, so it was exciting finding something that got my more experienced birding friends excited too!

2) Two would have to be the male Blackpoll Warbler that I saw last spring. The bird stuck out to me because it was a lifer, because they are pretty uncommon here as well, and because they are beautiful. It was also one of the last migrant warblers that I knew I might see that spring, but wasn't counting on it. There is a gravel road close to where I live that's only about a mile or so long and is incredibly active for birds during spring migration. This is where I found the bird. The day I saw that Blackpoll was one of the most exciting days I've had in a long time. I mean... just check out my list for that day! 20+ warblers in such a short little stretch, and most of them in large numbers. I wish I'd had a decent camera back then:

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S29364419

3) Last, but certainly not least is Lewis' Woodpecker! Lewis' was one of my first lifers outside of Mississippi, and was also one of the most beautiful birds I had ever seen! My sister got them right in her yard in Taos, New Mexico, so in my week trip there I got to see them every day and got some great pictures! I'll attach one below, but if you want to see more just check out this eBird list:

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S32103586

 

47206931.jpg

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1. Colima Warbler in Big Bend NP, Texas.

2. Painted Redstart or Red-faced Warbler in Southeastern Arizona.

3. Green and Gold Tanager in Ecuador. 

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Not for rarity, but for me:

1. My first Swallow Tailed Kite when i was a teen, and thats a long time ago....My favorite American bird. 

2. My first Golden Eagles, a pair on a utility pole in the northwest many years ago.

3. California Condor, I know, restocked, but still amazing to see. 

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1. Swallow-tailed kite - Bledsoe County TN

2. Roseate Spoonbill - Ding Darling NWR FL

3. Cerulean Warbler - Marion County TN

 

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My three favorite finds would be:

1. Northern Jacana - Santa Ana NWR, TX

2. King Rail - Big Island, OH

3. Whooping Crane - Wheeler NWR, AL

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1. Short-eared Owl! Seen while driving, but still extremely fun.

2. Great-horned Owl. Seen in a tree while boating!

3. Chestnut-backed Chickadee. My first rarity, seen eating from my seed piles!

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Hard question! 
I'd have to  break it up as well, omg.
The three/four in each are in no particular order.
 
Rarity lifers: 
Glaucous Gull (KS). Was told it was a very unusual find here in Kansas by an ornithologist/field guide writer I met in person!
Snowy Plover (OK). For years I had always heard a lot about them, and admired their cuteness and was just like, "man I'll probably never get to see one in person.." Then on my first trip to the Salt Plains, I saw one out there with all the Least Sandpipers and just got way too excited!
Painted Bunting. (KS) I don't know if they are still considered rare, but when I first saw a male when I was about 13 my mother and I thought it was someone's lost pet bird due to how exotic it looks!
Also the Rusty Blackbird, thought it looked like a dinosaur.

Coolest Lifers: 
Pileated Woodpecker. The ones around here are seriously some of the hardest birds to photograph, so when I finally got a decent photo of one I just felt so accomplished, plus they are just so cool and I love their call, probably my favourite Woodpecker. (And a lot of others seem to like them too!)
Sandhill Crane. They are huge and have one of my all time favourite bird sounds. When I first saw them when I was younger I thought they were Storks! 
Golden Eagle. There's a bit of a story behind this one. Growing up they had always been a favourite raptor of mine. The first time I saw one as a kid, something horrible in my family had just happened not long before.. We were driving through an area with lots of trees and land and I remember this gigantic raptor that flew from the trees and went into open view,and my mother telling me that it was a Golden eagle, later that same day there was good news that came to my family. The second time seeing one in my life as before was shortly after something tragic had happened, I was taking a walk to let off some stress and I saw the eagle hover from above the trees and soar right above me as I was struck with awe. Shortly after that sighting just like the last, something incredible happened. The third time seeing one, (which was also when I first photographed one) was the exact same scenario. It sounds crazy and superstitious, but that's alright, its one of the most amazing things  to have ever happened to me! 
The Long-Billed Curlew, Roseate Spoonbill, Wood Duck, Roadrunner, Bald Eagle, Cedar Waxwing, leucistic Canada Goose, Grey Catbird are definitely some honorable mentions, too...

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1. Common Scoter (OR) my first ABA Code 5 plus it was the second North America Record

2. Long-eared Owl (CA) Self-found rarity near the coast. 

3. Red-headed Woodpecker (MA) 400th ABA bird seen in May 2016.

I have many more lifers, but I liked these 3 the most.

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22 minutes ago, birdbrain22 said:

5 years ago was a long time ago birding wise... but I will now say my 3 best lifers are my next 3 lifers.

 

I was beginning to wonder if anyone else had noticed the original dates of this thread. While it's an interesting read and brings up memories from long lost names of the past, it doesn't really belong in the ID forum. Perhaps @Aveschapines can relocate it in the off topic section where it would be more appropriate.

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