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PhoneSkope Mods

I'm pleased that several manufacturers are producing phone scoping adapters, giving folks a stable option for recording distant birds with their smart phone through their scope.  Meopta and Kowa have nice models that work well, and I'll have a detailed review of these coming up in the Feb. issue of Winging It.  Their main limitation [read more…]

Who Else Likes My Brush Pile?

A couple of weeks ago, I extolled the virtues of my back yard brush pile.  I find myself surveilling the structure nearly every day breakfast, and last week was tickled to see a Red Fox effortlessly hop my 5-foot fence as I enjoyed toast and coffee.  It was clearly well-practiced at the ambush, probably hoping [read more…]

#ABArare – Brambling – Colorado

A 1st-winter male Brambling was found by Mike Henwood yesterday (19 Nov) at Bear Creek Lake Park in Lakewood, Colorado.  Word got out late last night, and scores of chasers observed the bird coming to scattered seed today, associating with a loose flock of mostly American Tree Sparrows and House Finches.  The code-3 rarity stands to [read more…]

Brushing Up

Earlier this fall, I had an ash tree that needed some pruning back.  One cut led to another, and soon I had a daunting pile of limbs, branches, and twigs to deal with.  I lopped the bigger stuff into campfire wood (local use only, wouldn't want to inadvertently spread Emerald Ash Borers…) and chopped a [read more…]

Phoggy Photo Phixes

I thought I'd continue on my theme of rescuing less-than ideal bird images through simple digital post-processing (in the last episode I talked about dealing with high-noise images.)  Today I'll address a few ideas for dealing with foggy images.

The issue came home for me a couple of weeks ago when I was on the [read more…]

Negate the Noise

In my last installment I talked about potentially Red-lining your ISO by setting a desired shutter speed and letting your camera's auto-ISO feature keep up by adjusting the sensitivity.  As advertisers are fond of saying, results may vary- make sure to play around with ISO on your camera to see how far you can push your [read more…]

Red-lining the ISO

Earlier this summer, I got a paradigm-altering email from my techno-savvy birding buddy Tom Wilberding. (I know- what a cool name for a birder!) Here's what he had to say:

Hi Willy,

I enjoyed your post on feeding buzzards. Glad you wear rubber gloves for that!

 Re camera tips and tricks, I sometimes miss shots going from [read more…]

Been Banding Lately?

Last weekend I had the pleasure of visiting an educational bird banding station run by the Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory at Barr Lake State Park, just northeast of Denver.  Meredith McBurney and her team of volunteers do a fantastic job of engaging school groups, bird club trips, individual birders, and passers-by (the banding table is [read more…]

What’s your favorite non-birding book for birders?

The August 2012 volume of Winging It should be winging its way towards your mailbox (and there’s no need to wait…read it online RIGHT NOW and in color!). In my Geared for Birding Column I mention some of my favorite non-birding references that I think would be of interest to birders. I know that [read more…]

Young Birds & Young Birders

I'm enjoying my last day of summer break, doing a little back-to-school shopping (yeah, teachers do that too) and taking some trips down memory lane as I review some pics & vids from the last few weeks' worth of adventures.   Some of my most rewarding experiences this summer involved birding & naturalizing with young [read more…]