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wildfelco

What is your 3 Best Lifers?

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I wouldn't have seen it if the post was elsewhere, and I am thoroughly enjoying the read, so I'm going to keep it going. 

I'm going with what I was most excited to see at the time:

1. Harlequin Duck

2. Barrow's Goldeneye

* important to note the I saw both of these (1 and 2) together in the same big flock of Common Goldeneye

3. White-Crowned Pigeon, on my last bird outing in the Florida Keys

 

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16 minutes ago, lonestranger said:

 

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.

With pleasure! It was fun reading back. My number 1 is still the same, but the most exciting bird I've seen recently was the Turkey Vulture that flew in close to the schoolyard last week just as my student/birding protegé was observing the difference in the shape and wing position between Turkeys and Blacks. He now calls the Black Vultures airplane vultures!

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4 minutes ago, inastrangeland said:

I wouldn't have seen it if the post was elsewhere, and I am thoroughly enjoying the read, so I'm going to keep it going. 

 

I left a link in the ID forum so hopefully everyone else willl find it.

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Sheesh, I've only been birding for a year and a half but I've been through A LOT, so this is hard....

 

1. PINK-FOOTED GOOSE, 11/1/16 - This one has a fun story behind it. I got the eBird alert for it in the middle of school one the worst possible day, since I had planned on finishing a massive project I had to do that same night. I panicked my way through school, rushed through the project and quickly found someone to take me in fear of it being a one day wonder. We hit traffic along the way, causing me to worry of not having enough daylight left (it was 5PM and the sun was setting). When we got to the park I did something between a panicked run and a joyful bounce to the lake (200ft from the lot) and started searching. Not to long after, and probably right at sunset, I caught sight of the frosted scapulars of the Pink-footed Goose among the flock of Canada's roosting on the bank. It was obviously exhausted, so it didn't care that I came to about 10ft from it (which was the point I wouldn't dare cross since I didn't want to bother it). I got a boost of excitement and this bird was the first of a lifer-packed month, including quite a few rarities.

2. House Sparrow, 7/14/15 - This one may seem strange, especially since I've proven that I had seen, acknowledged and photographed them before the date afterwards, but this was the main event that pushed me into the world of birding. I had gotten a pet Parrot a few months earlier than pushed me to start questioning what birds I was seeing outside. I even thought about looking into the hobby the previous March, but it fell through. Eventually, summer came, and my Parrot wanted to do nothing but sit in the side widow and observe (and screech at) the birds outside. He especially loved watching a pair of birds nesting in the siding of the neighboring house. I started wondering what they were, and by coincidence I happened to go to the local bookstore (a giant Barnes and Noble) around then. I got a tiny book, "Peterson's First Guide to Birds", and went to the window the next day to see what was out there. I flipped through the book from the front to the back and, since it was closer to the front than the correct species, initially called them House Wrens (which my mom heard as House Rats and got very confused). A few minutes later I found the correct species and was hooked. That first ID sent me onto a life-changing path that is now my biggest hobby (it overtook Astronomy a month later).

3. Tufted Duck, 2/6/16 - My first self-found rarity, which I found by chance in a large flock of Scoters in a nearby canal (not at all like the ones in Venice; think of a very short but fat brackish river connected to a saltwater bay and you have a Long Island Canal)

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Cerulean Warbler - Because they are awesome

Northern Wheatear - Also awesome, but rare too

Graylag Goose (wild) - Not as awesome, but extremely rare.

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These are not necessarily the rarest birds I have seen, but the best experiences.

1 - Crested Caracara in Northern Ontario. The longest twitch I have ever done (2200 kilometer round trip drive with 2 friends). Third ever living record in Ontario (I've actually seen some first ever provincial records, but this was the better experience).

31271656202_58025f88f1_b.jpgCaracara cheriway_2016-12-03_00129_Small  on Flickr

2 - Red Knot on Lake Erie shore. Red Knot are not that common in Ontario, especially in breeding plumage, but not a super rarity. Best because it was the first really quality bird I self found after moving back to North America.

31681247712_37d6b80733_b.jpgCalidris canutus_2014-09-01_00007_Small  on Flickr

31828368255_1b40cac219_b.jpgCalidris canutus_2014-09-01_00191_Small  on Flickr

3 - Ferruginous Duck in Prague, Czech Republic. Just for the sheer absurdity of the sighting. I was not even birding, but doing the tourist thing along the river in the city and this thing pops up. Only 5 have ever been reported in the Czech Republic (with caveat that Ebird gets less use there), and each time only a single person saw the bird.

30095663151_770ecab3d6_b.jpgAythya nyroca_2013-12-24_00003_Small  on Flickr

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1. Tufted Duck   (bad photos) 

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S34172392

2. Pine Grosbeak (good photos) First and only record for my county. Self found in my yard!

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S31491076

3. Toss up between Gray-cheeked Thrush (first county record, self found in my yard) and a Black-backed Woodpecker (very cool birds!)

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I would have to say that my top lifer was the Three-Toed Woodpecker that I had in my backyard in central Maryland.  The sighting occurred when I was young and the internet was just taking off so there wasn't really a means to report it. 

My second best lifer would have to be the Tufted Flycatcher that has been a resident of Ramsey Canyon, AZ for the past several years.  Not only was it a code 5, but I also got to experience it with my kids who also got to see a Flame-Colored Tanager and rattlesnake on the hike.

My third would have to be the California Condors that I saw at the top of Angel's Landing in Zion NP.  Great hike and great bird.

I am still debating if this counts, but while watching a feeder cam in Texas, I spotted a Mexican Violetear that I was unaware was coming to the feeder at the time and had only been spotted once or twice before.

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10 minutes ago, eb2156a said:

I would have to say that my top lifer was the Three-Toed Woodpecker that I had in my backyard in central Maryland.  The sighting occurred when I was young and the internet was just taking off so there wasn't really a means to report it. 

My second best lifer would have to be the Tufted Flycatcher that has been a resident of Ramsey Canyon, AZ for the past several years.  Not only was it a code 5, but I also got to experience it with my kids who also got to see a Flame-Colored Tanager and rattlesnake on the hike.

My third would have to be the California Condors that I saw at the top of Angel's Landing in Zion NP.  Great hike and great bird.

I am still debating if this counts, but while watching a feeder cam in Texas, I spotted a Mexican Violetear that I was unaware was coming to the feeder at the time and had only been spotted once or twice before.

Feeder cams don't count

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Here are my top three lifers...

1. My #1 lifer would have to be Lesser Goldfinch, that I saw in Abbotsford. Not just because it's super rare but because it was one of the most easiest birds to twitch; it was at someone's bird feeder and right in front of me!

2. #2 Would be the first year Black-headed gull that I saw in a Delta turf farm. It was just such a cool bird to see since I missed the one in Vancouver.

3.. #3  ROCK WREN! This one was just so cooperative, At one time he hopped onto a driftwood log and posed for me for maybe one minute. I've never sen such a cooperative bird

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11 hours ago, Short-eared Owl said:

1. Tufted Duck   (bad photos) 

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S34172392

2. Pine Grosbeak (good photos) First and only record for my county. Self found in my yard!

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S31491076

3. Toss up between Gray-cheeked Thrush (first county record, self found in my yard) and a Black-backed Woodpecker (very cool birds!)

Pretty cool story behind the Grosbeaks!!

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14 hours ago, Short-eared Owl said:

1. Tufted Duck   (bad photos) 

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S34172392

2. Pine Grosbeak (good photos) First and only record for my county. Self found in my yard!

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S31491076

3. Toss up between Gray-cheeked Thrush (first county record, self found in my yard) and a Black-backed Woodpecker (very cool birds!)

My parrot doesn't even allow me to pet him while he's eating!!!! That's just remarkable

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1: Ross's Gull - Tupper Lake, Feb 2, 2017. We twiched it on our way to Burlington VT. We saw it at 8:45 AM and got great views. The bird has not seen again after 10:20 that morning. We got lucky! Top of the list because of rarity and timing

2: Akiapolaau - Big Island of Hawaii, Feb 9, 2012. Got this bird while on a guided tour, but its sheer rarity (tiny population) and overall cool look make it one of my favorites

3: Worm-eating warbler - Point Pelee Tilden Woods, May 13, 2016. Although we had heard there was one in the area, we were not looking for it or expecting it. It had been on my wife's "want to see" list for a few years, since we have seen just about every other warbler. The special part of this one is that our 3 year old daughter found it! We were sitting on a bench along the trail eating a snack of goldfish, and she says "Daddy, a bird!" And there, right on front of our faces, is the worm-eating warbler! It was priceless. Our daughter really enjoyed the huge group of people that quickly showed up also

 

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Gyr falcon snowy owl who probably hitched a lift on a boat to Felixstowe suffolk but theone real lifer it a purple swamp hen who turned up at minsmere suffolk he/she showed well for a few days and then gone escapee maybe but what a truley stunning bird

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Update:

1: Lark Sparrow - A pair found in my yard a few months ago!

2: Bronzed Cowbird - Self-found and first in Polk county since 2013!

3: Hooded Warbler - Self-found in my yard a couple years ago! (Different yard and terrible shot)

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1.  Only county record of Summer Tanager at my bird bath

2.  First county record of Ross's Goose (they now get found yearly around here)

3.  First county record of Long-billed Dowitcher for eBird.  

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1. Black-and-White Warbler

2. Sora

3. White-throated Sparrow

This list would be much different if some of the WA rarities I found weren't birds that I've seen before elsewhere..

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Siberian Accentor (7th Canada record), Red-flanked Bluetail (2nd Canada record), and I dunno, maybe BBSA just because I got to photograph 4 of them from 3 ft away last summer. 

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1. for rarity: Rhinocerous Auklet juvenile - in a fresh water creek no less! He must have gotten lost in a windstorm and got blown up the inlet and into the creek.

2. for the experience: Rufous Hummingbird female feeding two fledglings right at eye level

3. for the thrill and the rarity: Pygmy Owl -- January, my husband says, "There's a bird in that tree." I reply, "That's just a dead leaf." Then I zoomed on it and "OmygodOmygod, it's a PYGMY OWL!!!!!"

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1. Red-headed Woodpecker. My fiance and I went to Rondeau and the kindest couple allowed us into their yard to have a look. Not only did we SEE them, we saw them mating! Such a gorgeous bird.

2.Whip-poor-whill. Same trip, we walked in the dark with our dogs (my dog has since passed), to find this little guy singing along one of the roadsides a few roads beyond our campground.

3. Prothonotary Warbler. Also same trip! We got to see 3 of them building a nest, bathing and foraging. It was so amazing. 

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Oh man that's hard. I've got to divide it into a few categories.

Peru Birds:

1. Sparkling Violetear Hummingbird 

2. Black-chested Buzzard-eagle

3. Torrent Duck

Backyard Birds:

1. Common Nighthawk

2. Blue Jay

3. Pileated Woodpecker

Florida Birds:

1. Tricolored Heron

2. Sandhill Crane

3. Swallowtail Kite

Missouri Birds:

1. Green Heron

2. Summer Tanager

3. Fish Crow

 

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