The other day, I went to look at bird books in Portland, Oregon, at Powell’s City of Books, which is said to be the world’s largest independent bookstore. Powell’s is a High Island-style fallout of printed pages. The store covers a downtown city block with several floors and 1.6 acres of retail space, holds a [read more...]
So meta: Are birders becoming trapped by technology?
I’m not old enough to reminisce about phone trees and rare bird hotlines, though I’ve heard plenty of stories about birding’s raw old days. By the time I picked up my first pair of binoculars, dial-up was being phased out. I am proud to be of [read more...]
The latest LED flashlights are small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, but as bright as a spotlight.
The dark days of winter lie ahead, and, pretty soon, many of us will be owl-prowling on our favorite Christmas counts. But are you ready to light up the night? If you’re still [read more...]
What are they: Orcs, Auks, or Dovekies?
The first time I heard someone exclaim, “There’s an Orc behind the ship!” this summer, I twirled in surprise, nervously quick-drawing my binoculars. In moody light, the mountain peaks of Svalbard—an isolated archipelago about 1,000 miles north of Norway—can assume an insidious, Mordorish aspect, and, for a fleeting [read more...]
If you blinked last week, you may have missed an outrageous birding competition—certainly the strangest, most wonderful I have ever attended—called the Birding Rally Challenge: an eight-day-long, no-holds-barred torneo June 11-18 across the deserts and jungles of northern Peru. The rally’s organizers call it birding’s World Cup, and, while I might liken [read more...]
Noah and the Wild Turkeys search for Ash-throated Flycatchers in eastern Oregon. (All photos by Tim Kurtz.)
“Ten minutes to go!”
As I stood at Yaquina Head on the Oregon Coast last weekend, my head reeled. Thousands of Common Murres jostled for space on the guano-stained cliffs in front of me, braying into my [read more...]
A cougar cub (with its mother's tail) caught by remote camera. Noah's backyard fence is visible in the upper left. (Click to enlarge.)
I stumbled into my first camera trap a few years ago while birding on Panama’s famous Barro Colorado Island. As I walked quietly down a jungle trail, listening for bird sounds, [read more...]
If the tourists on an Antarctic cruise aren’t birders when they step on the boat, then by god Noah Strycker will make sure they’re birders when they leave it. [read more...]
A screen capture of the Southeast Farallon Island webcam from September 25th, showing a Nashville Warbler clinging to the lighthouse antenna.
On the morning of September 14th, a birder named Matt Brady turned on his computer in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, opened an internet browser, and clicked on the Farallon Islands webcam to do a [read more...]
I was chilled out on Valium when it happened, but I remember distinctly that everything went very blurry, almost black, when a laser sliced a flap from the front of each one of my eyeballs near the crux of the LASIK corrective vision procedure earlier this month. It was unnerving to stare at the ceiling [read more...]