the madness of migration

The general public does not realize the significance of the month of May in the life of a North American birder. It is a magical time when all birders would much rather be prowling their favorite haunts searching for spring migrants than toiling away at their desks, or doing anything else for that matter. Every year I say I’m going to take the entire month of May off the following year because unless you go birding every day there is a good chance you are missing something somewhere. And that is a terrible feeling. I have seen some good birds this spring, but I crave more and more and more. Too much time sitting at a desk, and too little time scanning the treetops. The other day I was riding to work and not a quarter mile from my house I heard warblers singing. I literally threw my bike down in the street, pulled my binoculars from my backpack, and began frantically glassing the trees. Warblers are the true jewels of migration. Sure, there are lots of other cool birds that arrive in the area during this time, but I doubt there is a single birder whose pulse does not quicken when she or he hears that familiar buzzing high above them.

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