At the beginning of every new year I search for new blogs that follow the exploits of the big year birder. Last year it was Noah Stryker and his record setting world big year, and this year I’ve found 3 blogs which I’ll follow. In the past the most big year blogs I’ll follow at one time is two, however the format that each big year birder is using this time is a little different.
The first “Big Year Blog” I’m following is “Olaf’s Bad Weather Big Year” This is your traditional big year. One man against the elements, time, flight delays, bad luck, good luck, bad hotels, and equally bad hotels, chasing after the record total of ABA birds in North America.
With impressive numbers so far, and loads of pictures, it can be a struggle reading this blog. I don’t consider myself the best of writers by any stretch of the imagination, however I do re-read each blog post and try to correct any spelling or grammar error. It would do Olaf well to click on the “spelling and grammar check” button prior to publishing.
Despite that, it’s a great little blog and well worth following, just for the sake of seeing how close he gets to Neil Hayward, and Sandy Komito.
The next big year blog I’m following is “Lynn Barber’s Alaska Big Year“. This is the one I’m most interested in. If you’re not familiar with Lynn Barber, she’s one outstanding birder. Besides being a regular contributor to the “ABA Blog“, she did a Texas Big Year in 2003, and 2005, where her record of 522 species still stands. Her ABA Big Year in 2008 produced 723 species. Her book “Extreme Birder: One Women’s Big Year” takes the reader on her ABA Big Year as she recounts that incredible year. And in 2011, while a resident of South Dakota, she posted 350 species for her SD Big Year.
Now she’s living in Alaska and doing her Alaska Big year, while I eagerly await for each and every posting. I would highly recommend this blog to follow, especially if you only have time to follow one blog, this would be the one.
The 3rd and final blog is really different than any big years I’ve heard of, and it’s being brought to you by none other than Greg Miller. Yes, the same Greg Miller who who was one of the three main characters in the book and movie titled “The Big Year”. But this time Greg is doing his big year a little differently. Instead of traveling all over North America willy-nilly searching frantically for every bird, including rarities, he’s doing his big year as a series of 11 tours. Titled “Greg Miller: 2016 Big Year Tours“, Greg has set up these tours so others can join him for a week of all out birding fun. Each tour destination has already been determined, with a set price $1,750.00 per tour. You do save a few bucks if you book multiple tours. And with the first tour finished, their Southern California leg netted them 208 species. Quite a respectable number.
So this is what I’m reading this year, how about you?