[CT Birds] A Big January suggestion

Frank Mantlik mantlik at sbcglobal.net
Thu Jan 7 21:59:22 EST 2010

It appears that quite a number of CT Birders are pursuing the friendly competition of a Big January.  That is, trying to identify as many bird species in CT during the month as they can.  Some will also undoubtedly continue this effort through as a Big Year.
I'd like to encourage folks to concentrate their efforts on their home towns.  The reasons being fuel conservation, uncovering new species for your town/town list, and discovering new birding sites close to home.

Many of you are aware that I have been keeping CT Year Lists for decades.  However, last year  I concentrated on my home town of Stratford, much the way Patrick Dugan has been doing in Stamford.  Many of the same species one chases in far-away locales can be found in one's own town.  In 2009, I discovered some great birding sites I was unaware of (community gardens, Wooster Park, the Public Access behind Deluca Field, etc.).  Most towns probably have a website, whereby the Parks Dept. identifies town parks, ponds, and preserves.

In 2009 I counted 254 bird species in CT; with 237 species in Stratford.  Granted, Stratford is a coastal town with some great habitat.  But I'm sure your town has some great birding habitat as well.  Give it a go.

Frank Mantlik

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