Dog Days Of Summer

With it being the last day of July I’m sitting in an unfamiliar spot, my front porch. With a surprising day off in the middle of the week I’m having my second d cup of coffee as neighbors drive to work. Our local Red-shouldered Hawk is screeming. Blue Jays, Cardinals, and Blue Birds are active this cool morning at 7:40.
I feel a little guilty not having written any post for some time, but there are some extenuating circumstances that are keeping me close to home. And with fall migration starting to ramp up in the Ohio Valley I having been itching to get out. Reports of American Avocets, Short-billed Dowitchers, Baird’s, Stilt, and various peeps are being seen by our intrepid local birders. However for myself I had to stick close to home lately. A early Spring hail storm which damaged our roof has finally been replaced. Then we decided that it was high time to replace our worn out driveway and do something drastic about our very poor drainage system that moves rain water away from the house. Also I have to replace a retaining wall with something a little more solid than landscape timbers. So with all this activity our house is in some form of disrepair for the last month. And we still haven’t started the foundation work yet.
So as you can see it hasn’t been a good time to go birding. However there is light at the end of the tunnel.
I volunteered to lead small groups of birders on field trips starting on the third Saturday of August. So how in the hell did I get involved with something like this?
Well, I’m a member of a local group called Cincinnati Birders Meetup. It’s a group where people of various interests have an opportunity to meet others who are like minded. There are groups for people who hike, cook, backpack, photographers, an the list goes on and on.
Well my group has over 120 members and some of the field trips were either too far and in between, or just plain boring as they would go to same place over and over again. No variety. So this is where I step in since it seems I’m the biggest critic whenever I bring up the fact that since March our Meetup group has gone to same place 10 times. So instead of answering my question, they told me to lead a group on a field trip of my choice. So I am, with conditions.
Not liking large crowds I’m keeping the group small by setting 3 as the limit, so I can do the driving and go to places where the group has never gone before. So I’m kind of excited about my new venture and I hope it doesn’t interfere with my other birding trips I go on with some of my other friends. And as usual I will write a full report after our first trip. So stay tuned here.

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One response to “Dog Days Of Summer

  1. I use to lead walks with a naturalists’ club when I lived in Ottawa, ON. I ran into the same problem as you did: too many outings going to the same places. So naturally when I decided to lead walks, I picked locations that were not as well known, or “the road less traveled.” Like you, I also kept the group sizes small, usually 10-15 people. The outings were usually a success, and I noticed after awhile that the list of upcoming outings started to show new locations that hadn’t been visited before. I’m sure your group will appreciate the change of scenery.

    Looking forward to hearing how it goes,

    Pat

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