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    Photo Quiz: February 2015 Birding

    Oh, for crying out loud. What kind of a sick mind would do something like this? You’ll never see “real” birds like these ones.

    And that’s the point. This image forces us to look at parts of the bird we might otherwise ignore. As you can see, these two birds are quite different. And their [read more…]

      Gluttons for Knowledge


      Suppose you were tasked with characterizing the ABA membership. And suppose you had to do so in a single short sentence. We ABA’ers are all over the place demographically, geographically, ideologically, and other-ically. So we need a characterization that transcends our many differences. I know!—

      ABA members like birds and birding.

      Well, [read more…]

        Great Expectations


        An East End neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Photo courtesy of WQED.

        Christmas day, my family and I flew to my natal town of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We deplaned and were greeted at the gate by a Santa Claus impersonator. Then we got on the bus to my boyhood home, where my parents still live. [read more…]

          Photo Quiz, November/December 2014 Birding


          Update (Jan. 21, 2015): Tom Johnson’s full analysis of this photo is available to ABA members. Click here for the full-color PDF download:




          This has to be a trick. You’re right–it is. This bird was photographed off Cape May County, New Jersey, February 2014. Tom Johnson’s analysis appears in the print [read more…]

            25th Report of the ABA Checklist Committee, 2013–2014

            It’s a holiday tradition at Birding magazine: The last issue of the year features, among many other things, the annual report of the ABA Checklist Committee. Each year, the committee’s report is timely, thorough, and well-researched. So it is with the 2013–2014 report, and we’ll get around to that in a moment. But first things [read more…]

              Introducing the ABA State Guides


              In one of the ABA’s most ambitious undertakings ever, the association has partnered with New York–based publisher Scott & Nix, Inc., to produce a series of field identification guides to the birds of the U.S. states.

              The initiative is briskly under way, with three titles already released in 2014: The ABA Field Guide to [read more…]

                ABA Members: Submit Your Photos to Birding Magazine


                Let’s have some fun. Without any preamble, let’s take a look at five great bird photos. Here goes:


                1. This is sick, as the kids say. A Red-footed Booby in hot pursuit of a fenestrated naffwing. Look at how the booby’s right wingtip is cutting the surface of the water. This is more [read more…]

                  Featured Photo: September/October 2014 Birding


                  No preamble, no hints. What do you think this bird is? And, as always, why? Tom Johnson’s analysis and answer appear in the print version of the September/October 2014 Birding, arriving soon in ABA members’ mailboxes. For now, though, let’s try to work this bird out together, in the “Leave a Reply” section, below.

                  [read more…]

                    Birding magazine welcomes Ioana Seritan


                    Noah Strycker, the globetrotting Associate Editor of Birding magazine, recently announced that he’s taking it to a new level. Starting at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, Noah will embark on the mother of all Big Years: His goal is 5,000 species worldwide. He’ll start in Antarctica, work his way north through [read more…]

                      Response to Al Schirmacher


                      A week ago today I was, for whatever reason, pondering the question of why we bird. Almost simultaneously, it turns out, Al Schirmacher was musing the same matter:

                      Call it a harmonic convergence. Schirmacher, a church pastor, might call it providence. Anyhow, the responses streamed in: the challenge of bird ID, and the [read more…]

                      Birders know well that the healthiest, most dynamic choruses contain many different voices. The birding community encompasses a wide variety of interests, talents, and convictions. All are welcome.
                      If you like birding, we want to hear from you.
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                      • Open Mic: Searching for Snowy Owls in Ohio March 25, 2015 5:22
                        At the beginning of this year, I remembered missing the chance to spot a Snowy Owl when the bird stormed across the United States the previous winter, so I was determined to see one of these birds this winter. […]
                      • Mothing: The Nighttime Addiction March 18, 2015 5:49
                        Note: Although this may not seem to be a relevant post on The Eyrie, I thought it would be a good idea to share the obsession that sparked my passion for the natural world as a whole. I hope this post will inform and excite you about moths; perhaps even making them an obsession of […]
                      • Book Review: Ten Thousand Birds March 10, 2015 5:36
                        Ten Thousand Birds: Ornithology Since Darwin, by Tim Birkhead, Jo Wimpenny, and Bob Montgomerie Princeton University Press, 2014 544 pages, $45.00 hardcover ABA Sales / Buteo Books How did today’s birds come to be? How has the history of ornithology evolved since Darwin’s time. These questions, and many more, are answered comprehensively in the […]

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